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DANA will be updating you on important public policy matters as they happen. We will also post about the activities of the Governor, Delaware's General Assembly, local issues, hearings & meetings, and legislation that relates to DANA's Public Policy Agenda.


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Top tags: nonprofits  budget  Joint Finance Committee  General Assembly  Delaware  Grant-in-Aid  Governor  DEFAC  Workers Compensation  Insurance  Delaware Nonprofit Day  government  charitable solicitation  National Council of Nonprofits  Public Policy  revenue  Attorney General  Legislative Hall  Lt. Governor  Task force  Board Member  Calendar  charities  Healthcare  Nonprofit  Office of Management and Budget  taxes  Wilmington  Advocacy  Affordable Care Act 

UPDATE: What's Happening at the State and Federal Level

Posted By Sheila Bravo, Thursday, May 25, 2017

Hello everyone:

This is an update on what is happening at the State and Federal level which impact nonprofits in Delaware.  I would like to say brief – but there is so much going on!


Governor Carney issued his budget proposal back in March. Since then there have been two DEFAC reports which estimates a $385 million budget closure for Fiscal 2018.  Governor Carney has recommended a balance of expense reductions and revenue, which he refers to as shared sacrifice. 

Areas which DANA has raised concerns in meetings with Senators and Representatives include the implications of losing the State charitable tax deduction, moving pass-throughs to Grant-in-Aid, and overall reductions of direct services to those who are most vulnerable in our communities. Without a change, we believe an estimated 10% of funding to nonprofits could be at risk.  We also have continued to express our desire that expense reductions and Grant-in-Aid award reductions are not done with a swift across the board cut. 

This week, the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) began the budget markup process.  On Monday, they identified around $51 million worth of expenses to cut from all departments.  Of that, over $664,000 were pass-through reductions.  Contractual services and some grants were also reduced. Our higher education institutions also saw large funding reductions.   Where it was clear which agency or subsector was impacted, DANA reached out to notify. Today the JFC approved over $100 million in increased costs due to population adjustments (education/Medicaid) or priority areas (such as Education, Substance Abuse, Corrections). JFC has this week and next week to complete the budget mark up.  As DANA learns of these decisions, we will share the news.

Though Governor Carney presented several strategies to raise revenue, at this time it seems like the increase of the Corporate Franchise tax has the most momentum.  That would generate around $116 million in revenue leaving the Joint Finance Committee to develop a budget with $184 million in fewer expenses.

DANA, along with other members of the steering committee of the Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition (DRSC) (Ability Network, Association of Fundraising Professionals, and the Delaware Arts Alliance, Delaware Grantmakers Association, Delaware Community Foundation, United Way of Delaware, and the University of Delaware) believe increases in revenue is a more favorable approach, particularly given how the nonprofit sector receives less funding than it did in 2008. Some legislation is starting to emerge in addition to the corporate franchise tax, and include raising tax levels, increase the income brackets, raising taxes on cigarettes, and extending lodging taxes to vacation rentals. The coalition is reviewing each of these proposed bills and will be providing more insight in the coming weeks on how it compares to Governor Carney’s proposals and the previous Revenue Solutions recommendations issued in 2015.


  • In partnership with DCF, DGA and UWDE, DANA issued a letter to members of the General Assembly regarding concerns on removing the state charitable gift deduction. 
  • We are holding as many meetings as we can with key legislators to express our concerns over across the board cuts, and cutting desperately needed services.
  • We are also discussing with these legislators the need to change the trend of funding decreases to community services to funding increases.  We are advocating for long-range planning to develop the right level of funding resources to fuel the quality of life we desire for Delaware.
  • We are holding a Nonprofit Advocacy Day on June 8th with a hope that as many nonprofit leaders, staff, and volunteers attend to show the tremendous impact in the state.  It is a day that our Government recognizes the work we do, and how important our partnership is – let’s show them how many of us there are!
  • DANA in partnership with the DRSC are updating the sector coalition “logo letter” for you to share, and will have additional resources for you to reference in the coming weeks.


  • Help us tell your story.  Share with us the implications of 10% less funding –  in what way will your clients/customers be impacted.
  • Share any insights you have regarding revenue solutions that you may hear
  • Be aware of what funds you may receive from the State Government is at risk – whether as a grant, pass-through, Grant-in-Aid or contract
  • Connect with your Senators and Representatives and share your impact story.  We strongly encourage you to be clear about how the funds you receive directly benefit people. 
  • Develop contingency plans – not just for your organization, but for your clients.  If you are not able to serve these people due to reduction in funding, who else can.  Ultimately our goal is to ensure people are served, and if a partner agency can help – set up those conversations in advance of losing funding.
  • Explore other sources of revenue – consider collaborating with other agencies to seek Federal grants or national foundation funding.
  • Attend DANA’s upcoming Nonprofit Advocacy Day on June 8th. Modern Maturity is providing lunch, so we ask you register so that we know how many lunches to provide.


DANA, along with thousands of other nonprofits and religious institutions have sought to maintain the Johnson Amendment, which prohibits partisan activity of nonprofits. See What this Is.  The National Council of Nonprofits, along with many foundations have been active at preventing the repeal of this act.

A proposed Federal Budget was released yesterday, which would have catastrophic impact to many parts of the nonprofit sector.  The good news is that it is a proposal, and can be revised significantly.  We encourage you to understand how this budget impacts your organization.

Beyond hard funding cuts, of serious concern is the impact the proposed tax reform would have on charitable giving.  The Independent Sector just release a report, of which the Association of Fundraising Professionals have summarized  Read more about it


Reach out to Senator Carper, Senator Coons, and Congresswomen Blunt Rochester.  Share with them your concerns.  They will not be in session next week, so perhaps you can catch them here locally.

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned.  You are welcome to reach me directly with questions, ideas, or concerns at


Tags:  Budget  DEFAC  Delaware  Government  Governor Carney  Nonprofit  Senator Ernie Lopez 

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Vote Tuesday - Then OMB Budget Hearings Begin Wednesday November 9th

Posted By John Baker, Monday, November 7, 2016

Nonprofit Votes Matter – So vote on Tuesday, November 8th!!!

Then, if you haven’t already, checked the Delaware Office of Management and Budget calendar for the 2018 Budget Hearings and plan to attend and give public comment – limited to two minutes. Here’s the calendar:

Some Messaging Points:

We the Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition of the nonprofit sector agree upon the following points:

  • The Nonprofit Sector represents over 233,000 Delawareans that work and volunteer at Delaware Nonprofits.
  • The Nonprofit Sector, in partnership with state government, provides innovative, efficient, and effective services for all Delawareans.
  • Funding for the “Nonprofit Partners” line-item should be included in the Governor’s 2018 Budget.
  • No cuts should be made to contracts with Delaware nonprofits for services to Delawareans.
  • No more allocations should be added to the “Tobacco-Master Settlement Agreement, diluting remaining resources available for existing service providers.
  • Hold Grant-In-Aid level (FY2017 GIA Bill $45.9 Million).

The Nonprofit Forum on October 25th was a resounding success with over 75 nonprofit executives in attendance to engage in lively discussion with the Governor’s Chief of Staff, Drew Fennell, Delaware OMB’s Bert Scoglietti, the State Chamber’s James DeChene, DANA’s Sheila Bravo, The Ability Network of Delaware’s C. Thomas Cook, and United Way of Delaware’s Tyrone Jones…as well as your blogger…John. We heard from OMB’s Bert Scoglietti that with various cost drivers the budget gap will broadly exceed the September DEFAC forecast gap of $167 Million. This is a clarion call for you to mobilize your Board, Volunteers, and Friends to work with our Elected Officials to make the changes in funding that are needed to support the Life-Sustaining and Enriching Services that the Nonprofit Sector provides 24/7/365 to all Delawareans!

DANA and the Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition will be working on your behalf, but this is the year we need to mobilize all possible resources to get our message out and have our elected government officials and the public understand that we are partners, critical to the successful navigation of our State’s Fiscal Challenges.

Check out the ADVOCACY TOOLKIT here:

Advocacy Tool Kit Cover
2017 Toolkit
2017 Toolkit Part 2

As always, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to me at jbaker@delawarenonprofit.orgor 302-777-5500.


Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition:
Delaware Alliance for Nonprofit Advancement
Ability Network of Delaware
Delaware Community Foundation
United Way of Delaware
Delaware Grantmakers Association
Association of Fundraising Professionals – Brandywine Chapter
University of Delaware Center for Community Research and Service
and the Delaware Nonprofit Sector


Tags:  Advocacy  Delaware  Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition  Government  Nonprofit  Vote 

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Thank you Joint Finance Committee!

Posted By John Baker, Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Joint Finance Committee truly demonstrated the high regard they have for the great work of the nonprofit sector by voting in a $2.8 million increase to the Grant-In-Aid bill (GIA) – SB295. Details should be available late Tuesday or early Wednesday, so you can see how your organization fared.  Thank you also to the Controller General’s Office and Analysts who visited more GIA applicants than ever before.  Finally, thank you to the Delaware Office of Management and Budget (OMB) which worked tirelessly on GIA.

You can view the GIA SB 295 details as they’re released here:

Thanks to each of you for your deliberate engagement in the various nonprofit sector initiatives this year:  Delaware Revenue Solutions Coalition, the “Advocacy Logo Letter”, the October Nonprofit Forum, the Annual Budget Update, Nonprofit Day, Social Media campaign “Partners In A Stronger Delaware, and using “Voter Voice”.  Thank you to each of you for your focused efforts to engage your organizations, staff, boards, volunteers, and clients to communicate your value to Delaware’s quality of life.

Now, please take the time and send thank you notes, letters, emails, tweets, etc. to let the Joint Finance Committee members feel your gratitude.  In a year as tight as this one has been, the JFC had to make some very tough choices and they chose to recognize the nonprofits in Grant-In-Aid that demonstrated results.


This is a big win as we continue to build awareness and recognition of the important services you provide.  This win is a good start as we continue our efforts to build stronger relationships with our Government Partners.  We’ll keep you updated as we prepare for the 2018 Delaware State Budget.  We will be meeting with OMB, Departments, and other government officials starting in July and running through the budget development cycle, maintaining the momentum we’ve built this year to strengthen our sector and Delaware for the future.


As always, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to me at or 302-777-5500.


Tags:  budget  Delaware  government  Grant-in-Aid  Joint Finance Committee  Nonprofit 

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