TITLE 29

State Government

The General Assembly

CHAPTER 11. LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL

Subchapter I. General Provisions


There is created a Legislative Council which shall be composed of 10 members of the General Assembly as follows:

(1) From the Senate: The President Pro Tem, the Majority Leader, the Minority Leader, 1 member appointed by the President Pro Tem and 1 member appointed by the Minority Leader.

(2) From the House: The Speaker of the House, the Majority Leader, the Minority Leader, 1 member appointed by the Speaker and 1 member appointed by the Minority Leader.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1101; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 59 Del. Laws, c. 253, § 14.;

(a) The members of the Council who are not appointed shall serve during their term of office in the General Assembly and until their successors are selected. The members of the Council who are appointed shall be appointed at the first annual session of every new General Assembly and shall serve during their term of office in the General Assembly and until their successors are selected.

(b) In the case of a vacancy in the office of any member of the Council who is not appointed, a successor shall serve during such member's term of office in the General Assembly and until a successor has been selected. In the case of a vacancy in the office of any member of the Council who is appointed, a successor shall be appointed by the member of the Council occupying, at the time of the vacancy, the office from which the appointment was made.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1102; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The President Pro Tem shall be Chairperson of the Council during odd-numbered years and Vice-Chairperson during even-numbered years.

(b) The Speaker shall be Chairperson of the Council during even-numbered years and Vice-Chairperson during odd-numbered years.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1103; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

The Council shall:

(1) Summarize and digest information on matters relating to the general welfare of the State;

(2) On its own initiative or at the direction of the General Assembly or of the Senate or House, make studies on subjects of interest and concern and, based thereon, recommend such legislation as the welfare of the State may require;

(3) Recommend such codification and general revision of the Constitution and the laws of the State as may from time to time be necessary;

(4) Recommend such changes in the rules and procedures of the Senate and House as may advance the consideration of legislation by the General Assembly;

(5) Cooperate with and assist the work of interim committees or of commissions appointed at the direction of the General Assembly or of the Senate or House;

(6) Cooperate with the appropriate committees of the General Assembly or of the Senate or House to assure efficient utilization of its employees;

(7) Arrange for the obtaining of the printing needs and supplies and equipment of the General Assembly, subject to the laws of the State relating to the purchasing of state supplies;

(8) Employ such staff as it deems necessary to carry out this chapter;

(9) Prepare or cause to be prepared and drafted such bills, amendments, joint and concurrent resolutions, resolutions, memorials and revisions and substitutes thereto which are proposed to be introduced into the General Assembly as may be requested by any member of the General Assembly and otherwise render assistance, aid, information, counsel and advice in the preparation and drafting of any such proposed legislation;

(10) Collect or call to be collected all available information relating to any matter which is the subject of proposed legislation by the General Assembly, to examine acts of any other state and to investigate all available sources of information;

(11) Answer any and all inquiries for bills, resolutions, committee reports and abstracts, excerpts or copies of Laws of Delaware within the limits of available time and moneys and charging out-of-pocket expenses where such is determined appropriate for such abstracts, excerpts or copies;

(12) In general, act as a reference bureau for all matters relating or pertaining to legislative matters and subjects, whether enacted by this State or any other state or whether proposed by this or other states, at the request of any member of the General Assembly.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1104; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 59 Del. Laws, c. 253, § 13.;

The Council shall:

(1) Receive recommendations and suggestions for studies or legislation from all sources;

(2) Appoint committees and subcommittees which shall include only members of the General Assembly and at least 1 Council member and which shall be subject to the authority of the Council;

(3) Adopt such rules and procedures as may be necessary or appropriate to carry out its duties;

(4) Request information from any officer or agency of the State or of its political subdivisions bearing on subjects under consideration by the Council or by any of its committees or subcommittees.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1105; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322.;

(a) The Council shall appoint, with the consent of a majority of the members elected to each House of the General Assembly, a Director of Research who shall serve full time. The Director shall:

(1) Be licensed to practice law before the Supreme Court of this State; or

(2) Have been awarded a master of arts or master of science degree from an accredited college or university; or

(3) Have been awarded a bachelor of arts or a bachelor of science degree from an accredited college or university and have had 3 years experience in governmental research.

(b) The Director of Research shall receive such compensation as shall be determined by the Council, subject to the limitations contained in the annual appropriation act.

(c) The Director of Research, upon appointment, shall serve for so long as the Director properly performs the duties of Director and shall not be removed except for cause and only then upon the affirmative vote of 8 members of the Council.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1106; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The Director of Research shall:

(1) Organize and supervise the Research Division of the Council;

(2) Submit and publish such reports as the Council directs;

(3) Employ or engage assistants, stenographers and other persons or research agencies, subject to the approval of the Council;

(4) Assist any member of the General Assembly with respect to present or prospective legislation within the limits of the Director's staff and budget.

(b) The Director of Research shall be the Secretary of the Council. The Director shall prepare the agenda for meetings pursuant to the direction of the Chairperson. The Director shall cause to be kept the minutes of the Council and shall submit a copy thereof to the members of the General Assembly within 15 days of each meeting of the Council.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1107; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The Council shall meet at the call of the Chairperson and at such place as the Chairperson shall designate. Meetings of the Council shall also be called by the Chairperson upon the written request of 6 members and upon 48 hours' notice to the members of the Council.

(b) No less than 6 members of the Council shall constitute a quorum, and no act of the Council shall be valid unless approved by at least 6 members.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1108; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322; 66 Del. Laws, c. 54, § 1; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

The Council shall submit an annual report of its activities to the members of the General Assembly and to the Governor, which shall become a part of the journal of the Senate and House.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1109; 55 Del. Laws, c. 322.;

(a) The Council shall appoint a Controller General who, primarily, shall work with and assist the Joint Finance Committee of the General Assembly.

(b) The Controller General shall:

(1) At all times have full and complete access to all records of all agencies of the state government;

(2) Participate in any or all hearings held by the Joint Finance Committee of the General Assembly, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget or other state agencies in connection with contemplated general fund budget appropriations, capital improvement programs or supplementary appropriations;

(3) Request and obtain from any state agency all reasonable information and data as directed by the Joint Finance Committee to assist the General Assembly in the effective discharge of its state financial responsibilities; and

(4) Perform such duties as may be assigned or delegated to the Controller General by the Legislative Council.

(c) The Controller General has the authority to perform management and program reviews. Management and program reviews shall include, but are not limited to, any analyses necessary to determine operational efficiency and effectiveness, compliance with the laws of Delaware and legislative intent.

(d) The Council shall provide a secretary and such other aides as may be necessary to enable the Controller General to perform such functions.

(e) The Controller General, the secretary to the Controller General and such other aides as shall be employed to assist the Controller General shall receive such compensation, including salaries and other necessary expenses, as shall be determined by the Council, subject to the limitations imposed in the annual appropriation act.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 1110; 57 Del. Laws, c. 277; 62 Del. Laws, c. 277, § 18; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 75 Del. Laws, c. 88, § 21(13).;