Campaign notebook: Bonini plan would reduce Medicaid spending

VOTE 1 COL by . DOVER — With the primary election less than a month away, Republican gubernatorial candidate Colin Bonini has unveiled his first policy proposal.

Sen. Bonini on Monday released details on a plan to offer early retirement for state workers and reduce Medicaid spending. His idea would have the state give a three-year pension credit to employees who will retire early, which, he said, could save “literally hundreds of millions of dollars over time.”

The state did something similar around 1991 when it faced trouble keeping revenue in line with expenses but then hired new employees to fill the empty positions when more money began flowing in, Sen. Bonini said.

He would leave some positions empty and, to avoid losing too many people, would offer only a certain number of credits. If more people than budgeted for signed up, a lottery would be held to determine receives the credits.

“Obviously you don’t want everybody to take it and close the government,” he said. As an aside, he joked such a scenario would not bother him, since it would halt government spending.

He also proposed providing data cards to Medicaid patients to better track services and reduce waste and abuse. The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee pushed a very similar idea in 2014.

Democratic LGBT group makes endorsements

Barbara Gittings Delaware Stonewall Democrats announced last week it has endorsed state Sen. Bryan Townsend for the U.S. House and state Sen. Bethany Hall-Long for lieutenant governor. Both candidates are competing in primaries with five other members of the Democratic Party.

The group, which supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender causes, backed U.S. Rep. John Carney for governor and New Castle County Sheriff Trinidad Navarro for insurance commissioner in the other statewide races.

It also supported 19 House Democrats, five Senate Democrats, three Democratic challengers running for the General Assembly and a Sussex County Council hopeful.

Registration deadline

Anyone who wishes to vote in  Sept. 13’s primary election and is not already signed up must register today. Only Republicans and Democrats can vote and only for members of their party.

Delawareans can register at https://ivote.de.gov/, by mail or in person. Individuals should have identification when signing up. The deadline to change party affiliation has passed.

All Department of Elections offices will be open today:

• New Castle County Office, Carvel State Office Buildin, 820 N. French St., Suite 400, Wilmington, DE 19801, 577-3464, http://electionsncc.delaware.gov, 9 to 5

• New Castle County Office Warehouse, 220 Lisa Dr., New Castle, DE 19720, 328-8652, 9 to 4 Saturday

• Kent County Office, 100 Enterprise Place, Suite 5, Dover, DE 19904, 739-4498, http://electionskc.delaware.gov, 9 to 2

• Sussex County Office, 119 N. Race St., Georgetown, DE 19947, 856-5367, http://electionssc.delaware.gov, 9 to 2

• Office of the State Election Commissioner, 905 S. Governors Ave., Suite 170, Dover, DE 19904, 739-4277, http://elections.delaware.gov, 9 to 2

Reach staff writer Matt Bittle at mbittle@newszap.com

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