Booster seats, beer gardens, banking discussed in Senate

Jarek RutzHeadlines, Government

Booster seats and beer gardens were topics of discussions for two bills Thursday.

Booster seats and beer gardens were topics of discussions for two bills Thursday.

Child booster seats and beer garden workers  had two things in common Thursday: Bills involving each were on the Delaware Senate’s agency, and both passed handily.

Senate Bill 68, sponsored by Rep. Kyle Evans Gay, D-Arden, would require children under 2 years old and under 30 pounds to be seated in a rear-facing seat with a 5-point harness. 

Children under 4 years old and under 40 pounds would need to be seated in either a forward facing or rear-facing seat with a 5-point harness. 

Children between the ages of 4 and 16 would be required to sit in a booster based on the manufacturer’s guidelines or a seatbelt. 

SB 68 removes the existing fine for the first offense and requests law enforcement to provide a referral to the Office of Highway Safety car seat fitting station for guidance and education regarding proper use of a child restraint. 

If the bill is signed into law, the Department of Safety and Homeland Security would be required to implement an awareness campaign within 180 days of enactment.

SB 68 now heads to the House side of the General Assembly, where it will be assigned to a committee for a hearing.

House Bill 69, sponsored by Rep. Sean Lynn, D-Dover,  eliminates the requirement that beer gardens must have a daily average of at least 25 full-time employees to operate.

Beer gardens are the only liquor establishments that have a statutory staffing requirement. 

HB 69 now awaits Gov. John Carney’s signature. 

Also Thursday in the Senate:

House Bill 53, sponsored by Rep. Krista Griffith, D-Greenville, removes the requirement that a head or assistant head of any division of the State Department of Justice or the chief prosecutor of a particular county be a resident in Delaware. 

HB 53 is heading to the governor’s desk for signature. 

Senate Bill 83, sponsored by Sen. Darius Brown, D-Wilmington, would create the Delaware Community Investment Venture Fund to develop opportunities for banks and credit unions doing business in Delaware to better serve the needs of low to moderate income tracts in Delaware.

The source of funds will be transfers from the Delaware State Bank Commissioner Regulatory Revolving Fund which currently has an amount in excess of what’s needed to cover the operating expenses of the Office of the State Bank Commissioner. 

The initial transfer will be up to $2.5 million, plus another $250,000 for expenses. 

After that, additional transfers of up to $500,000 each fiscal year are authorized. No further transfers are authorized after June 30, 2028, unless further legislation is approved by the General Assembly.

SB 83 will now be assigned to a House committee for discussion.

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