Delaware school funding needs financial oversight

In a blatant disregard for fiscal responsibility and Delaware law, for almost a decade, the Joint Finance Committee has inserted language into the annual budget bill to remove oversight and protections from the use of taxpayer money to fund charter schools. One charter school that is under investigation for financial mismanagement has received millions in unaccountable funding, including over $750,000 in the past year. I have consistently opposed this use of taxpayer money with no accountability or understanding for how it is spent. This year, I filed an amendment to […]

Christina School Board election on April 14

This Tuesday, May 14, there is a very important election scheduled for a Christina School Board position. John Young is an extremely intelligent and dedicated advocate for public school children, educators and families. He has consistently shown the willingness and courage to confront the mercenary corporate reformists who are causing irreparable damage to Delaware public schools. He has used his experience, intellect, and work ethic to allow the public to see the intimate details and harmful effects of Standardized Testing, Common Core curricula, the dismantling of neighborhood schools, and the […]

Undo the Republican extortion over minimum wage

The minimum wage protects the poorest of the poor working people. Last year, the Republicans in the House took the state budget hostage in order to create alternative categories to undermine a minimum wage increase. Any elected Democrat who chooses to deliberately ignore the plight of those who are struggling to make ends meet under the false pretense that the Republicans are again threatening to hold up legislation such as the Bond or Grant-in-Aid bills should consider changing their registration or resigning from office. Any elected leader of the Democratic Party […]

Economic stability requires progressive tax structure

With the start of the new legislative session last week, we must take concrete steps to avoid the last minute budget scramble in June. Delaware needs to improve the long-term stability of its revenue streams by creating two new personal income brackets. HB 14 and HB 15 would create brackets applicable to Delaware taxable income in excess of $125,000 and in excess of $250,000. Currently, our highest bracket is rate is $60,000, and income over that $60,000 is taxed at 6.6% (income below and up to the $60,000 is taxed between […]

Ban toxic flame retardants in Delaware

As National Fire Prevention Week comes to an end, I want to highlight the negative effects of toxic flame retardants, which I have worked to ban in Delaware. Toxic flame retardants are chemicals known to cause cancer and other health effects. While these chemicals were intended to slow or prevent fires, the reality is that they are ineffective and pose serious health risks for millions of Americans. These chemicals are prevalent in everyday household items like carpets, mattresses, and furniture, as well as in firefighter uniforms and many children’s products. In previous […]

Fight against Trump’s Post Office privatization

As Post Office workers rallied to oppose Trump’s plan to privatize the United States Postal Service. I was pleased and privileged to join scores of Postal workers at the Newark Post Office located on Ogletown Road for a full display of unity against such a foolhardy move. Privatization of any government entity has historically resulted in inefficiencies and less services for the people. Privatization allow a third party to profit from the efforts of the workers and inevitably results in less employees and dwindling wages. Further enriching business speculators at […]

New savings coming to Delmarva electric bills

Over a year after seeking an increase in rates for electric customers, Delmarva Power (DP&L) has agreed to a settlement that will actually see a decrease in electric rates. The successful outcome of this long fight was only possible due to the remarkable efforts of the Delaware Public Advocate, Drew Slater, who deserves my sincerest appreciation and respect. When Delmarva submitted this most recent request for a rate increase last year (PSC Docket #17-0977), I continued my practice of intervening in rate cases that are brought before the Public Service […]

Letter of Support for State Auditor Candidate Kathleen Davies

I have sent the following letter of support for Kathleen Davies to some of my constituents. I believe this upcoming primary on September 6th is of the utmost importance to Delaware. I also believe that Kathleen Davies stands head and shoulders above her competitors as far as qualifications, ability, and willingness to dedicate herself without any reservation to serving the public interest. Her desire for an open, transparent good government will be enabled with the appropriate and objective oversight she will administer as our Auditor General. Please read about Kathleen […]

Lawmakers demand leak investigation into Kathleen Davies report

In response to the misguided and irresponsible statements of News Journal Executive Editor Mike Feeley unfairly criticizing the letter sent to AG Matt Denn seeking an internal investigation of a releasing of a confidential report, I am including my comments and challenges to Mr. Feeley’s statements in the article copied below. Rep. John Kowalko Mr. Feeley, In an obvious misrepresentation of the truth, you made statements in today’s article (“Mike Feeley, executive editor of The News Journal, said the news organization will not be deterred by threats of legal action”) […]

Kowalko: Governor’s secrecy hurts public trust

The News Journal | Letter to the Editor | by Rep. John Kowalko This governor’s unwillingness to engage and inform the public in matters of significant importance to their quality of life, such as the decision to remove the Rodney Square bus hub, is a violation of the public trust. Implying that some conveniently created policy of “executive privilege” exists is inexcusably wrong. Without full transparency and openness in the government’s decision-making processes, we as legislators cannot and should not expect to have the public’s confidence and trust in the […]