Our next meeting is Wed. Feb. 8, 2023
The following are excerpts from Governor Carney’s remarks:
“I believe that our success as a state must start with building a strong and growing economy. We know that a good job solves a lot of problems – and that’s not just political rhetoric.”
“The biggest challenge we have is filling the job openings that are out there. For my entire career in public service, we’ve been focused first on creating jobs. There have always been more people looking for work than jobs available. Today, it’s just the opposite. We have thousands more job openings than we have people looking for work. Let me say that again – in a different way. Employers have 37,000 job openings in the State of Delaware. And there are just 21,000 Delawareans looking for a job. I’ve never seen a situation like this before. Our state government sees those challenges every day. Across the executive branch agencies, we have 2,000 job openings and it’s harder than ever to find candidates. This is not a problem unique to Delaware. In fact, every state in the country is facing similar challenges. And so our ability to compete will depend on our success building and attracting a highly skilled workforce. Our colleges and universities have never been more important in this work.”
“Thanks to President Biden and our congressional delegation, we’ve also seen a significant influx of federal dollars that will help us build on this progress. With the support of the American Rescue Plan, we’re building a Clinical Lab at Delaware State University. An Allied Health Center at Delaware Tech in Wilmington. And a state-of-the-art laboratory on the site of the McKinly Lab at the University of Delaware. Over the course of the next year, ARPA funding will help rehabilitate blighted homes and properties on the east side of Wilmington.”
“All children should be able to read at grade level by third grade. Be proficient in math by middle school. And graduate high school ready for college or a career. If we meet those targets, our students will be better off in the long run. And our state will be stronger. But here’s the uncomfortable truth: too many students are behind. That’s especially true among our most vulnerable students. And that’s just not acceptable. We need everyone to lean into this issue.”
“Supporting our youngest learners and their families has to be a top priority for all of us. That’s why my budget next week will increase state investments in early childhood education. We will propose an increase in purchase of care to help more low-income families access quality child care. We will also double funding for the Early Childhood Assistance Program – or ECAP. These programs serve many of the most vulnerable 3- and 4-year-olds in our state. And with the help of an $8 million federal grant, we will develop a plan for the future of child care and early education in Delaware. I know this is a priority for Lieutenant Governor Hall-Long, Senator Gay, and many others in this chamber.”
“In the Oath of Office, we all take as elected officials, we pledge to ‘respect the right of future generations to share the rich historic and natural heritage of Delaware.’ But, that natural heritage is under threat. We’re the lowest-lying state in the nation. And the effects of climate change and sea level rise on Delaware communities are real. We’re seeing them every day. That’s why we need to take action. With the help of federal infrastructure funding, we will accelerate efforts to build out Delaware’s electric vehicle charging infrastructure. And we’ll restore investments in the Clean Water Trust – to protect our waterways and drinking water.”
“Protecting our state also means making sure Delaware families feel safe in their homes and communities. We’re working with leaders in Wilmington and Dover to expand our Group Violence Intervention Program – to reduce gun violence. Our collective efforts have shown good results. Statewide, shootings are down 30 percent since last year. There’s a lot more work to do, for sure. Gun violence anywhere is unacceptable – and we need everyone to make this a priority.”
“We can’t make any of these investments – in education, in our economy, in environmental protection and public safety – if we don’t have our fiscal house in order. Over the past six years, we have charted a responsible course, together. We’ve protected taxpayer dollars and directed investments where they can have the greatest impact. I’ve talked to a lot of taxpayers over the years – and that’s what they expect of us. When I took office six years ago, we were facing an almost $400 million deficit. Now, we have $400 million more in reserves for when the economy turns down again which we know will happen at some point. Despite a global pandemic that ravaged our economy – we have turned a significant deficit into a surplus. We have directed one-time revenue into one-time projects and built the largest infrastructure program in Delaware history – two years in a row now.”
Expanded abortion access, allowing licensed physician assistants, certified nurse practitioners and nurse midwives to perform abortions, and protecting those traveling to the state to terminate pregnancies.
Increased paid leave for all Delaware families, offering workers up to 12 weeks of paid leave to address a worker’s serious health condition or that of a family member.
Delivered $300 direct payments to Delawareans, as part of a bipartisan tax rebate to help counter the impact of inflation on families.
Upgraded local infrastructure, following passage of a $1.4 billion capital budget, which provides funds to improve roadways, schools, libraries and state parks like Cape Henlopen.
Adopted healthcare legislation that expands Delawareans’ access to telehealth and telemedicine services.
Protected Delaware’s environment, with the Clean Water for Delaware Act which protects waterways and rebuilds drinking water infrastructure, focusing on underserved communities.
Expanded access to the polls, for the first time offering early in-person voting in Delaware at least 10 days before Election Day.
Improved gun safety, the result of six gun safety bills which ban the sale of assault weapons, raise the age from 18 to 21 to purchase most firearms, and strengthen background checks.
Passed education legislation that increases K-3 special education funding and expanded Black history ecducation for all K-12 students.
The choice is clear
The other political party wants to steal your right to vote.
The other political party wants to take away your right to control your body.
The other political party wants to remove your right to affordable health care.
The other political party wants to repeal your right to privacy.
Only one political wants to protect your rights. . .
Republicans are trying to take rights that have been part of American life for decades. Protect your rights by supporting Democratic candidates in your district.
To vote in the upcoming primary and general elections, you must register by August 20, 2022.
Register to vote today at ivote.de.go
Several potential candidates for public office nurtured their civic duty ambitions by attending How to Run for Public Office, a workshop held Feb. 10 in Georgetown.
Strategic and tactical advice was provided by a panel of former campaigners addressing key aspects of running for office: preparation and advance planning, staying authentic, cultivating support personnel and finances, messaging, problems to avoid, and the personal ingredients needed for successful campaigning.
The program was conducted in a hybrid format with attendees present both in person and via Zoom. It was sponsored by Sussex County Democratic Party at its Sterling Avenue headquarters.
“This is part of our ongoing outreach effort to identify, encourage and enable good candidates for public office; to help folks who want to contribute to the well-being of their community,” said Jane Hovington, party chair.
Panelist Leslie Ledogar, then chair of the 14th Representative District Democratic Committee, which is anchored by Lewes & Rehoboth Beach, currently supports Speaker of the House Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf, D-Rehoboth Beach, at the capitol. Ledogar described important styles and types of messaging to help candidates align their personal values with voter needs. She counseled taking the long view and soliciting enduring voter support.
Panelist Kerri Evelyn Harris, former candidate for U.S. Senate and current DNC National Committee member, is beginning her campaign for the 32nd Representative District. Her counsel to other candidates covered matching one’s promises to the scope of the office sought, keeping the campaign staff aligned with one’s personal mission vision, and using voter feedback productively.
Panelist Erik Raser-Schramm, a campaign worker in Delaware since 2004, has participated in runs for offices up and down the line: local, state and national. A past chair of the Delaware Democratic Party, he is currently deputy chief administrative officer for New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer. Raser-Schramm contributed advice via Zoom on places to secure campaign support, how to advance plan around these targets, and ways to utilize help so it matches volunteer interests and capacities. He also counseled how to manage screening questionnaires from potential endorsing organizations.
The workshop included a spirited question-and-answer session as well as closing commentary on candidness as both a candidate and a subsequent public officeholder. In closing discussion, the need to maintain voter contact after the election also emerged as a vital aspect of politics in Delaware.
PHOTO: How to Run for Public Office candidate training in-person attendees shown are (l-r) Leslie Ledogar, then 14th RD Democratic Committee chair; Jane Hovington, Sussex County Democratic Party chair; Kerri Evelyn Harris, National Democratic Committee member; and Michael Payam, Sussex County Democratic Committee vice chair.
I hope that you and yours are doing well. The New Year is well underway, and I want to reach out with a few important updates from our district and the legislature. As always, I am mindful of the pandemic’s impact on our state. To remain informed, please visit or call to for the most up to date information on the pandemic, testing sites, vaccine information, and more. https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/and https://coronavirus.delaware.gov/vaccine/or the hotline 1-833-643-1715.
As soon as I receive updates that would be helpful to you, I push them out on my Facebook which you can follow here https://www.facebook.com/RepPeteSchwartzkopf
Please know I am here to help you in any way I can. As always, if you have any questions or concerns please reach out to me at email@example.com. You can reach my office by calling 302-744-4351. You can also reach my assistant, Eric Hastings, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 302-577-8481.
As you may have noticed, the beginning of the 151st General Assembly’s second leg began a lot like our last. Due to the significant rise in COVID cases and extremely contagious nature of the Omicron variant, we are taking several steps to limit exposure and mitigate the chances of spreading the virus. Ensuring the health and safety of legislators, staff and the public is a top priority. Additionally, the work of the General Assembly is critical, and we want to reduce the chances of an outbreak, which could potentially cripple the operations of this branch of government. That is why many of our operations were virtual and or with limited in-person staff.
The safety of our legislators, staff, and the public is my highest priority. Fortunately, we have phenomenal staff who put forth great effort to ensure our work has remained effective as ever, and that legislators can work on behalf of their districts with as little disruptions as possible despite the severe challenges the pandemic brings.
By the beginning of February, the General Assembly will adjourn for Joint Finance Committee Hearings. You can keep informed about all events at Legislative Hall here: legis.delaware.gov.
Since the onset of the pandemic, Delawareans have looked for ways to continue supporting their local restaurants while being mindful of covid-19 safety measures. In our district, there is no shortage of fantastic eateries, and understandably, many have leaned on creativity and support of the public to survive.
HB 290 is the final iteration of my bill that allows alcoholic beverages in transactions for take-out, curbside, or drive-through service and to use outdoor seating for serving of food and drinks so long as the licensee satisfies certain conditions. In previous sessions, there was an end-date to these allowances, now, the sunset provision is removed, and this may become a more permanent way of life.
Supported by stakeholders, legislators, and most importantly, the public, I’m hopeful this will be a win-win for all of us in the years to come. I have worked diligently alongside my co-sponsor Sen. Ernie Lopez to alleviate any concerns that remained, as evidenced by the amendments to the bill. and I want to thank everyone who emailed, called, and supported this measure in the past and now.
Online: Due to the recent surge in COVID-19 cases and demand for surf fishing permits and annual passes, the quickest and safest way to purchase permits and passes is online at www.destateparks.com. Sales will start online 10 a.m. Feb. 1 for surf fishing permits and Feb. 15 for annual park passes.
At state parks: Permits and passes will be on sale at offices within Delaware State Parks starting at 10 a.m. on Feb. 1 for surf fishing permits and Feb. 15 for annual park passes. Those who choose to purchase annual passes or surf fishing permits at a park office should expect long wait times and must wear a mask inside the building. Park office locations are listed at www.destateparks.com/FindPark. (Please note: Permits and passes are not available at DNREC’s Dover office.)
I’m proud to sponsor upcoming legislation alongside Sen. Ernie Lopez that will prohibit discrimination based on an individual’s status as a living organ or tissue donor in the offering, issuance, cancellation, coverage, price, or other condition of an insurance policy, including a life, health, disability, or long-term care insurance policy.
Regarding protections for donors, Delaware lags behind our neighboring states, and we simply need to do more.
You can now order four at-home COVID tests delivered straight to your home, completely free of charge.
Frequent testing is key to putting this pandemic behind us. Take a moment and order your tests today at CovidTests.gov. A reminder that you are limited to one order (four tests) per residential address. https://www.covidtests.gov/
In addition, President Joe Biden's administration will ship roughly 400 million free N95 face masks nationwide starting in late January. Distribution centers will be identified, like pharmacies and community centers. The CDC recently updated their guidance to recommend N95 masks over all other types, as they are respirators, unlike cloth or surgical masks.
November 16, 2021
Nine months and five days ago, President Biden invited me to the Oval Office for a meeting. Together, we discussed the dire need to pass legislation that finally addressed our nation’s infrastructure needs.
After years of neglect, many of our roads, bridges, and water systems were not working for the American people. Our public works required a bold investment worthy of our twenty-first-century challenges. And as Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, I knew that our committee should lead the way in bringing Democrats and Republicans together to enact an expansive, historic vision for the future of our country.
By doing so, not only would we modernize our crumbling infrastructure but we would also create millions of good-paying jobs in communities of all shapes and sizes.
All these months later, we finally saw that hard work pay off. Yesterday afternoon, President Biden signed into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act—a once-in-a-generation investment in our nation’s infrastructure.
No matter where you live in Delaware, you and your loved ones will benefit from this bipartisan legislation and feel its impact for years to come.
Maybe you’ve been paying more and more lately for car repairs because the roads on your commute to work haven’t been fixed in years. Or perhaps you’re a farmer or small business owner who has struggled with slow internet speeds.
You could be one of the many households worried about lead and other contaminants coming out of your faucet. Or maybe you’ve been thinking about making the switch to an electric vehicle like I recently did, but would feel more comfortable with a few more electric chargers on the road.
This bipartisan infrastructure bill will bring concrete changes to every corner of the First State and improve life for a lot of families. And while we still have more to do to meet the needs of the American people and address the climate crisis, we’re on our way to creating a brighter future.
Here’s to that brighter (smoother) road ahead,
Senator Tom Carper
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14th Representative District Democratic Committee
P. O. Box 1541 - Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971