How the Republican Tax Cuts Are Helping Delaware

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Posted by John Kartch on Monday, January 4th, 2021, 1:45 PM PERMALINK

Delaware is benefiting greatly from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted by Republicans in 2017:

65,680 Delaware households are benefiting from the TCJA’s doubling of the child tax credit.

Every income group received a tax cut. Nationwide, a typical family of four received a $2,000 annual tax cut and a single parent with one child received a $1,300 annual tax cut.

311,370 Delaware households are benefiting from the TCJA’s doubling of the standard deduction. Thanks to the tax cuts, nine out of ten households take the standard deduction which provides tax relief and simplifies the tax filing process.

11,230 Delaware households are benefiting from the TCJA’s elimination of the Obamacare individual mandate tax. Most households hit with this tax made less than $50,000 per year.

Lower utility bills: As a direct result of the TCJA’s corporate tax rate cut, Delaware residents are saving money on utility bills. Lower electric, water, and gas bills help households and small businesses operating on tight margins. For example, Delmarva Power (see below) passed along tax reform savings to its customers by reducing its power rate increase request in Delaware by $26 million.

Thanks to the tax cuts, Delaware businesses of all sizes are hiring, expanding, raising pay and increasing employee benefits:

Green Recovery Technologies, LLC (New Castle, Delaware) — $1,000 bonuses for all seven employees:

"We are a startup waste-to-value biochemical company of seven that believes in the direction the country is going and that our best days are ahead of us. These tax reductions benefit our workers by providing an instant no cost wage hike. Paying the bonuses in a low tax environment was an easy decision for GRT since we know that this low cost capital is being invested in the local community where it will be spent on goods and services as well as being by employees into their retirement savings accounts.” — Kenneth Laubsch, President and CEO, Green Recovery Technologies, LLC

Delaware Supermarkets Inc. (Wilmington, Delaware) -- $150 extra bonuses to 1,000 non-management personnel.

“Our ability to provide bonuses and training to our employees demonstrates the far-reaching implications of this tax reform. We have a renewed optimism for the local and the national economy, and this important legislation better positions us for future growth.” – Christopher Kenny, CEO

 “This legislation benefits those of who count on Main Street budgets for our livelihoods, and it’s a privilege to share the benefits with the men and women who work so hard at ShopRite. It makes it possible to succeed in a very competitive industry.” -- Melissa Kenny, director of sales and marketing

Navient (Wilmington, Delaware) – 98% of Navient’s 6,700 employees will receive a $1,000 bonus (approx. 6,566 bonus-eligible employees):

Crediting the new corporate tax rate recently approved by Congress, approximately 98 percent of Navient employees across the country received a $1,000 bonus just before the holidays.

Navient has approximately 6,700 employees nationwide, including more than 900 in Hanover Township, company officials say.

According to a memo from Jack Remondi, Navient president and CEO, the firm announced it will pay a $1,000 bonus to all non-officer employees.


Colleen Hughes, an instructional design specialist — she works behind the scenes in the training department — said co-workers “cheered and hollered” when they read their emails.

“And it came right before the holidays,” said Hughes, 33, of Dupont. “I literally started to cry. I was shocked. I have a 3-year-old and I overspent for the holidays. This really helped me out.”

As news of the $1,000 bonuses made its way through Navient, Hughes said people became emotional.

“I know I feel I’m valued that we were even considered,” Hughes said. “We all feel valued by the company — that we all are a valuable asset to the company. So much so that they recognize our talent and dedication.” -- Jan. 2, 2018 Wilkes-Barre Times Leader article excerpts


Farmers Insurance of Salem (Wilmington, Delaware) -- An insurance company is moving their offices from New Jersey to Wilmington, Delaware to a location in an Opportunity Zone created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

A New Jersey insurance company is moving its offices to Wilmington and with it more than 50 jobs.

Delaware's privately run economic development agency announced this week it had negotiated a $400,000-taxpayer grant package for Farmers of Salem. In a press release, it said the company plans to spend $5.6 million to purchase and renovate an existing office building in Wilmington's "central business district."

But the company's grant application, released Friday, states that Farmers of Salem's plans instead are to move to a building along the Wilmington Riverfront. Today, the 3-story brick building, located at 1 Avenue of the Arts, houses two companies, Mitchell Associates and Blue Rock Financial Group.

The once-industrial redeveloped structure sits along the banks of the Christina River next to the Riverfront Market. It has been for sale since at least 2018. Three months ago, its listed price was reduced by $300,000 to $4.5 million. It is unclear what Farmers of Salem's final negotiated price might be, as neither the company, nor its broker returned a call. The building's seller declined to comment. Also unclear is whether either of the building's existing tenants will move out following Farmers' purchase. Currently, 6,000 square feet on the third floor sits vacant.

Farmer of Salem's move into Wilmington likely will boost the city's commercial real estate market. While owners of office buildings in Delaware's largest city still struggle to fill large amounts of empty offices, momentum might be shifting. Farmers of Salem is the latest in a string of out-of-state buyers of commercial properties in a market that has long been dominated by a single owner, the Buccini/Pollin Group.

The insurance company told Delaware officials that it is seeking "a more vibrant and robust community." It said its decision to relocate to Wilmington came amid overall company growth and the taxpayer "incentives do help."

Other organizations that have recently considered relocating to Wilmington include Widener University's Delaware Law School. Its dean, Rodney Smolla, said the school ultimately decided against a move, yet plans to open a "satellite location" remain.

CSC, the state's largest and most politically influential registered agent company, recently purchased a building next to the Wilmington train station.

Based on its $120,000 real estate transfer tax payment, The News Journal estimates the sale price for the 112 S. French St. property at $4.8 million, or about $110 per square foot.

The number is significantly less than the asking price of $184 per square foot for the nearby 1 Avenue of the Arts building, which Farmers intends to buy.

Highlighted on a sale brochure for 1 Avenue of the Arts is that two floors of the building currently is leased as well as a proclamation that the property sits within a Delaware Opportunity Zone.

Gov. John Carney recently named much of downtown Wilmington and the Riverfront as Opportunity Zones. Investors who direct money to such "economically distressed" areas can avoid or delay paying federal taxes. Not included on the state's Opportunity Zone list are Wilmington's low-income neighborhoods of Hedgeville and Hilltop. -- February 1, 2020 Delaware News Journal article

Second Chance Farm (Wilmington, Delaware) -- A company focused on helping formerly incarcerated citizens get back into the workforce will be headed to Delaware and will be located in an Opportunity Zone created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

First, you need to understand the Opportunity Zone Program, which was enacted as part of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

It’s an economic development program where census tracts are designated as eligible for tax breaks for private investors through a program called Opportunity Funds. The goal is to help under-resourced communities become more economically stable by creating jobs for the people who live there — or, as the IRS puts it in its FAQ: “Opportunity Zones are designed to spur economic development by providing tax benefits to investors.”

Opportunity Zones are basically an incentive for people to invest in areas that need it — something that, historically, has led to gentrification and displacement of the under-resourced people who were theoretically meant to benefit. (See a map of Delaware’s zones here.)

That’s why Second Chances Farm, an LLC founded by entrepreneur and TEDxWilmington organizer Ajit George, is an interesting concept — one that combines farming, jobs for local returning citizens and ultimately entrepreneurship opportunities that require neither capital nor credit.

“We call them ‘green collar” jobs,” said George in an interview with “Green because it’s organic, it’s pesticide free, and it’s herbicide free. And it’s about growing food locally. This is not a hobby, this not a corner garden in the summer, it’s about growing food year round, on a production scale.”

So, how did the concept of Opportunity Zones, urban farming and ex-offenders come together? It was the result of two very different 2016 TEDxWilmington talks — one about reentry and recidivism, the other about farming of the future.

Employees — virtually all of whom will be formerly incarcerated — will run the farms with a starting pay of $15 an hour. As the company grows, the plan is for employees to eventually acquire farms of their own and become business owners (or “compassionate capitalists,” as Second Chances Farm calls them).

In contrast to downstate’s traditional outdoor crops, Second Chances Farm will be an indoor, LED-lit, vertical hydroponic farm that will operate year-round; the first farm’s location is yet to be determined

“There’s no soil, it’s all grown in continuously flowing water,” said George.

Vertical hydroponic farming has become increasingly popular over the last few years across the country — even Jeff Bezos has backed a hydroponic farming venture. Second Chances will likely be the first one in Delaware.

The for-profit venture is projected to have its first indoor farm up and running by the fall, pending a final clearance with the IRS. It’s already won a few awards and startup grants.

If placing a farm inside the city seems strange, consider the challenges the average ex-offender faces when trying to get to get a job — and how much easier it would be if $15-an-hour jobs were available right in the neighborhood.

In order to qualify to be placed in a job at Second Chance, inmates heading toward reentry will work with the behavior health and wellness program Connections during the final six months of their sentences.

“We are working with Connections, who currently have an exclusive contract with the Delaware Department of Corrections with regards to people re-entering society from Delaware’s Prisons,” said George. “Issues like anger management are beyond the scope of what we can do. They offer more social work, so it just made sense for us to work with them.”

Connections also has a transportation group that can help Second Chances Farm employees get to and from work, an issue for many looking for work after reentry, as drivers licenses are sometimes still suspended and getting car insurance can be a challenge.

The organic, hyperlocal vegetable crops will be sold to restaurants, organic farm stands and to cancer patients avoiding even the minimal amount of pesticides allowed in traditional organic mass farming.

“Delaware used to be known for three things — chicken, credit cards and cars,” said George. “What we’re really talking about is adding a new industry, which is organic hydroponic crops. And with that comes my notion, which is ‘compassionate capitalism,’ which is really providing opportunities for people.” -- February 27, 2019 article

Mountaire Corporation (Millsboro, Delaware) – $1,000 or $500 bonuses based on length of service; increased 401(k) matches:

Mountaire had an amazing year in 2017. We are blessed with great people and great opportunities. Our performance is outstanding and the blessings of Jesus Christ are all around us to enjoy.

I am very encouraged that the President of the United States and the Republican Congress have reduced taxes for businesses and individuals for 2018. I am extremely excited about what this new change means to our company and all Mountaire employees.

Very soon you should see the impact of the new lower tax rate in your paychecks.

Additionally, because of this new tax reduction, I am pleased to announce that on February 2, 2018, Mountaire is going to pay a one-time discretionary bonus to hourly employees. This bonus will be subject to normal taxes and distributed to all full-time Mountaire hourly and piece rate employees as follows:

  1. $1,000 for all active full-time hourly and piece rate Mountaire employees with more than 180 days of employment as of January 27, 2018.
  2. $500 for all active full-time hourly and piece rate Mountaire employees with between 91 and 179 days of employment as of January 27, 2018.
  3. $500 for all active full-time hourly and piece rate Mountaire employees with between 1 and 90 days of employment as of January 27, 2018. This group of employees will receive their bonus money as soon as they have completed their first 90 days of employment.

I have also decided to make significant improvements to our 401k savings plan. Effective November 1, 2018, Mountaire’s 401k match will be increased to 100% of the first 3% invested, and 50% of the next 2% invested. And also, effective November 1, 2018 you will be given immediate vesting on 401k matching monies.

All these improvements are being done because of the Tax Reform and Tax Cut passed by the Republicans in Congress and signed into law by our President.

I am very optimistic about our performance and the future of Mountaire and our country.

May God continue bless us and guide us! -- Jan. 26, 2018 letter to employees from Ronald M. Cameron, Chairman

Delmarva Power (Newark, Delaware) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Tax cuts passed by Congress in December have effectively caused Delmarva Power to reduce its power rate increase request in Delaware by $26 million, the company announced on Friday. – February 9, 2018 Delaware Online excerpt

Harvard Business Services, Inc. (Lewes, Delaware) – $1,000 bonuses for all full-time employees:

“Harvard Business Services, Inc., located in Lewes, Delaware, has just announced it will join many companies nationwide and award all full-time employees with an immediate $1,000 bonus in their next pay check in order to augment their tax savings.

Mike Bell, Vice President and Director of Marketing, announced the bonus, saying, “We appreciate the great job you do, and the dedication you show our clients every day. Keep up the good work.” – Jan. 26 2018, Harvard Business Services, Inc. press release

T.J. Maxx – 3 stores in Delaware – tax reform bonuses, retirement plan contributions, parental leave, enhanced vacation benefits, and charitable donations:

The 2017 Tax Act benefited the Company in the fourth quarter and full year Fiscal 2018. The Company expects to continue to benefit from the 2017 Tax Act going forward, primarily due to the lower U.S. corporate income tax rate. As a result of the estimated cash benefit related to the 2017 Tax Act, the Company is taking the following actions:

  • Associates

A one-time, discretionary bonus to eligible, non-bonus-plan Associates, globally

An incremental contribution to the Company’s defined contribution retirement plans for eligible Associates in the U.S. and internationally

Instituting paid parental leave for eligible Associates in the U.S.

Enhancing vacation benefits for certain U.S. Associates

  • Communities

Made meaningful contributions to TJX’s charitable foundations around the world to further support TJX’s charitable giving. – Feb. 28, 2018 The TJX Companies Inc. press release excerpt

Home Depot -- 9 locations in Delaware, bonuses for all hourly employees, up to $1,000.

Lowe's -- 1,000 employees at 10 stores in Delaware. Employees will receive bonuses of up to $1,000 based on length of service; expanded benefits and maternity/parental leave; $5,000 of adoption assistance.

AT&T -- $1,000 bonuses to 124 Delaware employees; Nationwide, $1 billion increase in capital expenditures.

Cintas Corporation (Seaford, Delaware) -- Bonuses for 38,000 employees; $1,000 bonuses for employees of at least a year, $500 for employees of less than a year.

Comcast (Multiple locations in Delaware) -- $1,000 bonuses; nationally, at least $50 billion investment in infrastructure in next five years.

Chipotle Mexican Grill (Multiple locations in Delaware) – Bonuses ranging from $250 to $1,000; increased employee benefits; nationally, $50 million investment in existing restaurants.

Ryder (Delaware location: Wilmington) -- Tax reform bonuses for employees.

Starbucks Coffee Company (Multiple locations in Delaware) – $500 stock grants for all retail employees, $2,000 stock grants for store managers, and varying plan and support center employee stock grants. Nationally, 8,000 new retail jobs; an additional wage increase this year, totaling approximately $120 million in wage increases, increased sick time benefits and parental leave. 

U-Haul (Multiple locations in Delaware) – $1,200 bonuses for full-time employees, $500 for part-time employees; nationally, over 28,000 workers will receive a bonus.

Wal-Mart – 9 locations in Delaware -- Walmart employees are receiving tax reform bonuses. Nationally, base wage increase for all hourly employees to $11; bonuses of up to $1,000; expanded maternity and parental leave; $5,000 for adoption expenses.

Wells Fargo – 18 bank locations in Delaware; raised base wage from $13.50 to $15.00 per hour; nationally, $400 million in charitable donations for 2018; $100 million increased capital investment over the next three years.

Bank of America (Multiple locations in Delaware) -- Delaware-based employees of Bank of America will receive $1,000 bonuses.

Apple (Apple store in Newark, Delaware) -- $2,500 employee bonuses in the form of restricted stock units; nationwide, $30 billion in additional capital expenditures over five years; 20,000 new employees will be hired; increased support of coding education and science, technology, engineering, arts, and math; increased support for U.S. manufacturing:


Apple Inc. told employees Wednesday that it’s issuing a bonus of $2,500 worth of restricted stock units, following the introduction of the new U.S. tax law, according to people familiar with the matter.

The iPhone maker will begin issuing stock grants to most employees worldwide in the coming months, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. The move comes on the same day Apple said it would bring back most of its cash from overseas and spend $30 billion in the U.S. over the next five years, funding an additional technical support campus, data centers and 20,000 new employees.

Apple confirmed the bonuses in response to a Bloomberg inquiry Wednesday. – Jan. 17 2018, Bloomberg News article excerpt

     Capital expenditures, etc:

Apple expects to invest over $30 billion in capital expenditures in the US over the next five years and create over 20,000 new jobs through hiring at existing campuses and opening a new one.

Building on the initial success of the Advanced Manufacturing Fund announced last spring, Apple is increasing the size of the fund from $1 billion to $5 billion. The fund was established to support innovation among American manufacturers and help others establish a presence in the US. It is already backing projects with leading manufacturers in Kentucky and rural Texas.

Apple works with over 9,000 American suppliers — large and small businesses in all 50 states — and each of Apple’s core products relies on parts or materials made in the US or provided by US-based suppliers.

Apple, which has a 40-year history in education, also plans to accelerate its efforts across the US in support of coding education as well as programs focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM). – Jan. 17, 2018 Apple press release excerpts

Note: If you know of other Delaware examples, please email John Kartch at

The running nationwide list of companies can be found at

More from Americans for Tax Reform