Sen. Huxtable represents the 6th District, covering Milton, Lewes, Rehoboth Beach and Dewey Beach.
Let’s spread love not hate this Pride Month! Love is Love!
MEMORIAL DAY 2023
This cloudy Memorial Day began for me this morning at the Lewes Presbyterian Church, alongside community members and veterans for a wreath laying ceremony. We gathered around the gravesite of Colonel David Hall, a Lewes native and a former Governor of Delaware. Colonel Hall boldly led in the Battle of Brandywine and the Battle of Germantown — crucial battles in the American Revolution.
Then, the rain couldn’t stop the American Legion Henlopen Post 5 from hosting its annual Memorial Day ceremony — quickly pivoting from the Rehoboth Bandstand and moving the entire event inside to the Convention Center. Commander Tom Dahl and his team put on an excellent ceremony, featuring a keynote address from Korean War Veteran Greg Gause.
Finally, I stopped at American Legion Post 17. Post Commander Steven Missimer put on a great program with USAF Major General Craig La Fave providing the keynote speech.
Memorial Day allows us to reflect upon the liberties we have in this country that we often take for granted. Let us all remember that these freedoms came with a price — and honor all who gave their lives to protect ours.
Let us remember to honor and appreciate those who have fought for our country this Memorial Day!
According to the latest data available from the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Delaware is currently facing a shortage of more than 20,000 affordable rental homes available to extremely low-income renters.
That’s why I am proud to report that last week, the Senate passed my legislation, Senate Bill 87 (S). This legislation would fully exempt affordable housing projects funded by nonprofits and government entities from the state’s portion of the realty transfer tax.
By effectively lowering the cost for both buyers and sellers, SS 1 for SB 87 will help to spur growth among the housing stock most within reach for low- and medium-income families. This law will encourage our local jurisdictions to participate in the growth of affordable housing more robustly, while streamlining existing transfer tax exemptions for first-time homebuyers.
While we still have a lot of work left to do around affordable housing, I want to thank my Senate colleagues for taking this important step to make sure our tax code aligns with our values and the needs of our residents.
Delaware is working diligently to close the digital divide and bring high-speed internet to every home in the First State. Thanks to a boost from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the American Rescue Plan Act, our goal is now more in reach than ever.
Your input is critical.
The Delaware Broadband Office has recently launched several new tools to collect your feedback, track our progress and see exactly when high-speed internet will be available in your area.
Click here to fill out a survey and sign up for the Office’s newsletter: https://bit.ly/456JBzE
Click here to see how the Office is using federal funds to expand high-speed internet in Kent and Sussex Counties: https://bit.ly/3o6ORCL
To learn more, visit https://broadband.delaware.gov/
The Delaware Tree Stewards, housed under the Delaware Forest Service’s Urban and Community Program, is offering a four-session training, geared toward participants living in Sussex County, Delaware.
Participants will be equipped with skills to be able to work with neighbors, organizations and local public agencies within their own communities to organize and lead tree planting projects, assess new potential tree planting sites, care for existing tree canopy and access a variety of technical and financial resources to support their endeavors.
The training covers topics including:
– Tree biology & health
– Site assessment & tree selection
– Proper planting techniques
– Maintenance & tree care
– Organizing community plantings events
Launched in Fall 2020, the Delaware Tree Stewardship program connects Delawareans to their landscapes through the acts of planting and caring for trees. Delaware Tree Stewards is an excellent opportunity to connect with experts and learners alike. By completing training and networking with other stewards, graduates will be able to recognize opportunities and coordinate tree projects where they are needed most. Visit http://de.gov/treestewards to find out how you can get involved!
Delaware’s Libraries are some of the biggest assets in our communities. Last week, my colleagues and I were paid a visit by several librarians from up and down the state, reminding us about the good work they do and the innovative programming they offer.
One of those programs is Delaware’s Imagination Library, which is a collaboration between the Dolly Parton Imagination Library and First Lady Tracey Quillen Carney. This program lets children ages birth up to their 5th birthday receive a free book in the mail each month to promote an early love of reading!
Over the past several months, I have learned all about the many traditions that have been passed down through Legislative Hall.
Last week, I brought my first piece of legislation to the Senate floor — and it passed! But first, many of my colleagues “stumped” me with a long list of questions, which is something that every freshman Senator must endure during their first time managing a bill.
Senate Bill 30 clarifies language in our code about what constitutes a sawmill under Delaware law and adds definitions related to agriculture and silviculture. This legislation gives us a great opportunity to educate and improve awareness of forestry, trees, and the DE Forest Service staff and resources.
The Historic Lewes Farmers Market strengthens our local food systems and economy by bringing fresh food across Sussex County. I’m glad I got the chance to “ring in” opening day for the 18th annual market.
Historic Lewes Farmers Market is a nonprofit organization that operates two weekly markets from May-November and manages many programs including our SNAP match, Food Pantry Purchase Program, and farmer scholarships.
As a project partner in a two-year program with the Delaware Department of Agriculture’s Council on Farm & Food Policy, the Historic Lewes Farmers Market is able to procure, aggregate, and distribute produce, meat, eggs, and dairy from Delaware small farmers and other local sources to food pantries across Sussex County. This program adds fresh local food to the diet of over 3,000 individuals in need in Sussex County weekly.
Electric vehicles reduce smog-forming air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions in our state, our country and the world.
In order to encourage Delawareans to purchase new electric vehicles, Delaware DNREC will continue to give state rebates on qualifying makes and models with the extension of the Clean Vehicle Rebate Program.
For vehicles purchased or leased after May 1, 2023, there are a few enhancements to the program:
– A new application portal will make it easier for car shoppers to redeem the rebate at the dealership or up to 90 days after their purchase.
– New price limits are based on the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP), instead of total price, to ensure additions like trailer hitches won’t affect rebate eligibility.
– A regularly updated list provides car shoppers a quick reference to the 30+ Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) and Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) eligible for the rebate.
To learn more, visit https://tinyurl.com/47yrrrfy
Rep. Stell Parker Selby and I stopped in for a visit at the Milton Theatre — another institution that has served our community for more than 100 years!
Saturday was National Train Day. Rep. Stell Parker Selby and I spent part of the day with the Lewes Junction Railroad & Bridge Association and the little red caboose. Their display adjacent to the Lewes Public Library and the Lewes Historical Society Museum will highlight the impact the train industry has had on this area. Watch for their growing work and display and if you want to volunteer with them, just reach out.
Cape Henlopen is an incredibly peaceful place. Its beaches and trails provide a quiet sanctuary for residents and tourists alike to enjoy nature’s wonders just a few short blocks away from our thriving business corridor all along the Coastal Highway.
In the wake of overwhelming public opposition to last year’s proposal to construct and open a restaurant at Cape Henlopen State Park, Speaker of the House Pete Schwartzkopf and I have filed legislation to protect the park’s beauty and natural resources.
Senate Bill 6 will require the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, as a trustee of the land that the parks sits on, to administer it in the public interest.
As we approach graduation season for the Class of 2023, I want to give a special congratulations to local high school students who were recently selected as Secretary of Education Scholars based on their academic records and community service.
Cape Henlopen High School’s Camryn Cunningham and Colleen Flynn have both succeeded academically while also serving as leaders in their schools and communities.
I am so proud of this impressive group of honorees, and wish them the best of luck as they continue on the path to become future leaders here in Delaware.
The Delaware State Police have served as Sussex County’s lead law enforcement agency for decades, and it was my honor today to join them for a celebration of the agency’s 100th anniversary.
On behalf of the 6th Senate District, I want to express my gratitude to all of the men and women – troopers and civilians – who have served DSP with distinction over the last 10 decades.
Your commitment, your service and your sacrifice have made our communities and our families safer.
Click here to read more about DSP’s proud history: https://bit.ly/3ADbYY4
Here in Delaware, there are around 400 people waiting for life-saving organs to be donated. Those in our state represents just a small percentage of the national transplant waitlist, which currently sits around 104,000 Americans.
Someone gets added to the donor waiting list every 9 minutes in this nation.
That’s why I was proud to introduce House Concurrent Resolution 37, sponsored by Speaker of the House Pete Schwartzkopf and me, which recognizes April 2023 as “Donate Life Month” here in the First State.
Joined by several guests from the Gift of Life Donor Program and other community organizations, we raised awareness about the value of becoming an organ donor.
Check your driver’s license for a “heart” the next time you open your wallet to see if you are an organ donor!
One of the best ways you can help fight drug abuse and prevent addiction is by discarding your expired or unused medication.
Continuing Delaware’s rich farming tradition for generations to come means we have to do more to build resilience in our local food supply.
That’s why the Delaware Council on Farm & Food Policy is offering grants to local farmers and other food supply businesses to help them expand capacity, build partnerships and increase their resilience.
Applications for grants ranging from $2,500-$150,000 are currently being accepted.
Click here to learn if your farm or business is eligible and how you can apply today: https://bit.ly/41HiSas
With Earth Day right around the corner, it’s a good time to remind ourselves we have a collective responsibility to improve our local air quality.
Delaware’s open burn ban, also known as ozone season, begins on May 1. That means the opening burning of cut or fallen tree limbs, dead branches or shrubbery will not be allowed again until Oct. 1. Instead, please use curbside or drop-off yard waste sites, composting or mulching to dispose of your residential yard waste until Fall.
Cooking fires, recreational campfires and ceremonial bonfires using firewood will still be permitted during this period. And remember, it is never legal in Delaware to burn leaves, grass, trash, garbage, tires, plastic or other refuse.
Click here for more information about Delaware’s annual open burn ban and alternatives to for dealing with your yard waste during the spring and summer: https://bit.ly/40mlskT
Looking for a way to give back to your state and community? Apply to become a member of a Board or Commission.
Governor John Carney makes appointments for about 300 Boards and Commissions that impact nearly all public policy issues, like education, healthcare, public safety and more.
To streamline the application process and encourage more Delawareans to apply, Governor Carney’s office has launched a new website for Boards and Commissions.
Apply today to be part of a Board and Commission and use your voice to serve your community.
There were several special guests in Legislative Hall this week, including visitors from the Delaware Farm Bureau, Humane Animal Partners, and even the Greek ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Alexandra Papadopoulou
This morning we made it out and planted some beach grasses at Cape Henlopen State Park. Brandon Williams, my Legislative Aide, and my daughter joined a whole host of volunteers to help Delaware DNREC plant grasses in a number of locations on our dunes.
Then we headed over to the Friends of Cape Henlopen State Park annual flea market. That’s going on until 3pm.
I was invited to Milford to join the Food Bank of Delaware as they “topped off” their new facility with the last beam. Can’t wait to see the facility be completed as they serve the residents of Kent and Sussex Counties. This will help their capacity to serve. Thanks for sharing your mission and helping our community with the challenges of food insecurity.
I next joined the The Green Beret Project at their Milton location to learn more about how they serve the youth in our communities. Thank you all for sharing your mission and vision.
Had the pleasure of hanging out with Rep. Stell Parker Selby yesterday touring the Brandywine Valley SPCA facilities in Sussex County with a couple of our constituents who are concerned with veterinary capacity in the area. Thank you for the work Brandywine Valley SPCA and others are doing in the field of veterinary medicine.
One of my last appointments yesterday was at Fort Miles Historical Association museum where I snapped this picture.
Great day. Started the morning with my friends and colleagues Sen. Sarah McBride and Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf at the Delaware State Dental Society “Give Kids A Smile” event in Lewes, providing underserved children free oral health care. Thank you for the great energy and your outreach and service to our community.
Then spent the evening at the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village celebrating 100 years of growing chicken here in Delaware with Delaware Department of Agriculture (DDA) and several more friends and colleagues like Bethany Hall-Long, Sen. Dave Sokola, Sen. Kyra Hoffner and Rep. Sherry Dorsey Walker. Just imagine, this industry started with an accidental shipment of 500 chickens and now it’s a multi-billion dollar industry here in Delaware!
Teachers have endured an extraordinary and trying past few years. Now more than ever, these dedicated public servants deserve to be compensated fairly — and Delaware can’t afford to be out-competed by our neighboring states who pay their educators a higher salary.
I was proud to stand alongside my colleagues and several educators yesterday as Governor John Carney announced a historic increase for teacher salaries that will be included in this year’s budget. His plan includes a 3% raise for everyone working in public education, with a total of a 9% raise for our teachers. There’s still more work to do to improve our schools, but this is an exciting first step.
Delaware families face many barriers accessing affordable and quality housing. Recently, the Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA) has announced two updates that will help reduce these barriers for Delawarean homeowners and renters.
First, DSHA is expanding their Delaware Mortgage Relief Program in a variety of ways, including: an increase in available financial assistance, future mortgage payments, removal of the delinquency requirement, and partnerships with community organizations. Over 1,100 Delawarean families have benefited from this program and DSHA hopes to help even more. Learn more about the Delaware Mortgage Relief Program at https://demortgagehelp.com/.
Then, DSHA is proud to announce the opening of the Delaware Tenant Rent Reporting Pilot Program. This program will help renters build credit without going into debt. Interested to see if you qualify? Visit https://www.
While I look forward to the opportunity to work with my colleagues in Dover on steps we can take locally to combat climate change, I was excited to join our federal delegation at Bowers Beach today as we celebrated the passage of the Water Resources Development Act through Congress. This federal legislation authorizes much-needed investments in flood mitigation and coastal restoration projects.
The WRDA will benefit communities in Delaware through a number of avenues: it updates the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ emergency authorities to provide greater support to Delaware’s beaches following damaging storms, lowers costs for shoreline protection efforts, and invests in modernized drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure across our state — just to name a few.
Delaware’s coastal communities are already feeling the effects of rising sea levels and are often impacted the hardest by extreme weather events. I’m glad that we have partners in Washington, D.C. who understand the urgency of this matter and look forward to the implementation of the WRDA here in the 6th District.
Senator Tom Carper
Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester
Before he gave his State of the State address last week, I had the chance to sit down with Governor John Carney. We discussed some of the biggest issues facing families living in the 6th District, like access to affordable housing, the effects of climate change on our coastline, and the need to preserve open space across our community.