Blevins Legislation to Set Animal Shelter Standards Signed Into Law

Legislation Will Protect Animals, Promote Pet Adoptions and Reduce Euthanasia

Pet lovers will be able to go to animal shelters around Delaware knowing that shelters will have to meet standards for medical care and housing thank to action by Senator Patricia Blevins.

Blevins worked with Governor Markell’s office, State Representative Melanie George, D-Bear, and representatives of the state’s five animal shelters and veterinary community to develop the state’s first-ever standards for shelters.

Blevins Continues Battle Against Domestic Violence by Making Strangulation a Felony

Senator Blevins has always made keeping our families safe a top priority and this year she took on strangulation, a crime that’s often a red flag for even more violent domestic abuse, by making it a felony in its own right.

Because strangulation wasn’t previously an offense and because it can be hard to spot in some cases, it was often plea-bargained down to a misdemeanor.

“Treating this crime as a misdemeanor sent the wrong message to abusers and their victims,” Blevins said. “We need to treat this crime with the seriousness it deserves.”

Blevins’ Action Protect Children from Lead Poisoning

Toddlers facing the greatest risk of lead poisoning will get additional health screenings thanks to Senator Patricia Blevins’ leadership.

While lead paint has been banned for use as interior house paint since the 1970’s, there are still older homes where the durable paint remains on interior window sills and doors. Blevins’ new law builds on existing statutes that mandate lead testing for all one-year-olds by requiring tests for two-year-olds in homes and day cares deemed to be high risks for lead poisoning.

Blevins Helps Curb Health Insurance Rates by Giving State Power to Review Premiums

Until recently, health insurance companies could set rates and Delaware could do nothing to challenge excessive increases. Thanks to a determined effort by Senator Patricia Blevins, that’s changed.

Under legislation Blevins sponsored, health insurance rates are now subject to the same kind of state review as are life, homeowners or car insurance.

The new law gives the Insurance Department 30 days to review requests by health insurance companies to raise their rates. If the commissioner doesn’t think the increases are justified, they can be adjusted.

New Law Toughens Penalties for Abandoning Children

When a toddler was abandoned in the parking lot in front of the Christiana Care emergency room, all of Delaware was shocked to learn that this tragic child abandonment crime was classified as only a misdemeanor. Individuals who commit such a crime now face tough penalties, thanks to legislation sponsored by Senator Blevins in 2009.

Under the law, individuals convicted of abandoning a child under age 14 face up to five years in prison, and those who do the same to teens between the ages of 14 and 18 could face up to three years in prison.