The Delaware General Assembly will continue to meet virtually when the House and Senate return next Tuesday March 9th.
Senate President Pro Tem David Sokola, D- Newark, and House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf, D- Rehoboth Beach, made the announcement Tuesday. Lawmakers have been meeting virtually since the start of the session, with some choosing to go to Legislative Hall on meeting days.
Legislative Hall in Dover remains closed to the public.
“Although we have made good progress in combating the virus, administering more than 228,000 doses of the COVID vaccine, we still are in a situation where we cannot fully open the building safely,” Schwartzkopf said. “As I have stated numerous times, the health and safety of my fellow legislators, our staff and the public are my primary responsibilities. Remaining in virtual session for the time being is critical to that goal.”
“One of the more positive outcomes of this pandemic has been the enhanced ease and convenience with which the public is able to actively participate in the legislative process from the safety and comfort of their own homes,” Sokola added. “Our public health workers deserve an enormous amount of credit for the strides they have made in vaccinating our state’s most vulnerable residents, but we are not yet in a position where we can safely return to the world we left one year ago. Fortunately, the General Assembly has proven that we can continue to debate and pass meaningful legislation that will improve the lives of Delawareans, even when we are not all in the same room together.”
According to Schwartzkopf and Sokola, virtual sessions have allowed more people to remotely ‘attend’ committee meetings, which are often held in small rooms at Legislative Hall.
The virtual format will continue for at least four weeks.
To review the agenda of the House and Senate, the committee schedule and to link to a live broadcast, please CLICK HERE