As one of a few state senators appointed by leadership to serve on the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) these past 12 years, I have had the unique opportunity to work with state agencies and organizations to ensure that all Delawareans have access to programs and resources that meet their needs. I have been given the responsibility to review budget requests totaling in excess of $36 billion and to assist in writing appropriation bills totaling over $25 billion together with Grant-in-Aid funding totaling over $300 million.
Since being appointed to JFC, I have consistently supported cuts that have saved taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars while maintaining essential services. It is legally required that we craft a balanced state budgetand vitally important that we preserve essentialprograms and services. My primary focus is to make sure that our budget will be sustainable for the next fiscal year.
I believe that budget-setting and the decisions of the Joint Finance Committee should be open and available for the public to see. That's why I worked as a co-sponsor of legislation to amend Delaware's State Constitution so that the public has 3 days to review the Budget Bill and 2 days to review the Bond Bill before the legislature votes on it. Additionally, in 2008, I worked as co-sponsor of a bill that created a searchable budget database for state spending.