Governor Carney Accepts Strategic Plan from Delaware Pathways Steering Committee

Plan would improve Delaware’s efforts to connect educators and employers, and expand work-based learning

WILMINGTON, Del. – The Delaware Pathways Steering Committee presented its Strategic Plan to Governor John Carney on Wednesday – including priorities designed to more effectively connect Delaware educators and employers, create additional work-based learning opportunities for Delaware middle and high school students and better prepare Delaware students to enter college or a career in a high-growth industry.

Governor Carney is committed to expanding work-based learning opportunities for Delaware students, and is reviewing the Committee’s plan.

“Delaware’s economy remains in a period of significant transition, and we should ensure our schools are teaching the skills that employers demand,” said Governor Carney. “That means connecting Delaware’s educators with our employers, allowing our students to gain practical, work-based experience and retooling our workforce development programs to help students and employers succeed. Thank you to the members of the Steering Committee for producing this Strategic Plan, which will help us prepare Delaware’s students to succeed in jobs of the future.”

Governor Carney will speak at 1:45 p.m. Wednesday to the Third Annual Delaware Pathways Conference at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington.

Delaware launched its Pathways to Prosperity initiative in 2015 to establish partnerships between Delaware employers and educators, and better prepare Delaware’s students for college or a career. Governor Jack Markell signed Executive Order 61 last year, creating the Steering Committee to expand the Pathways program.

The Strategic Plan released on Wednesday includes five core priorities:

  • Build a comprehensive system of career preparation that aligns with the state and regional economies;
  • Scale and sustain meaningful work-based learning experiences for students in grades 7-14;
  • Integrate our education and workforce development efforts and data systems;
  • Coordinate financial support for Delaware Pathways;
  • And engage employers, educators, and service providers to support Delaware Pathways.

The Steering Committee includes representatives from the Delaware Departments of Education and Labor, the Delaware Economic Development Office, the Delaware Workforce Development Board, Delaware Technical Community College, United Way of Delaware, the Delaware Business Roundtable Education Committee, the Rodel Foundation, Capital One, and Delmarva Power.

“The Steering Committee is proud of the report and very pleased that these recommendations will add a level of continuity to the great work already being done in our state to provide middle and high school students career awareness and work-based learning experiences,” said Mark Brainard, President of Delaware Technical Community College, who Chairs the Steering Committee. “Governor Carney’s support of Pathways demonstrates his commitment to building Delaware’s talent pipeline for the future by engaging all of our high school students in comprehensive college and career readiness programs.”

“As the Chair of the Workforce Development Board for Delaware and President of one of the largest businesses in the State, I see the Pathways effort as a critical transformation of how we approach workforce development in the future, and the Strategic Plan represents a significant collaboration across all stakeholders that clearly defines the steps to success,” said Gary Stockbridge, President, Delmarva Power Region for Pepco Holdings, Inc. “I look forward to helping execute this plan and creating a workforce that keeps Delaware competitive and the place to thrive for the business community.”

Click here to read the full report.

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Fiscal Responsibility Earns Delaware a Universal Triple-A Credit Rating

Rating agencies express confidence in Delaware’s financial management

WILMINGTON, Del. – The three major rating agencies have once again awarded Delaware a Triple-A credit rating, the highest mark that a state can achieve.

Delaware has earned the Triple-A rating for 17 years, and the rating agencies continue to express confidence in Delaware’s strong financial management and its ability to effectively address budget challenges.

“Delawareans expect us to responsibly manage the state’s finances, protect taxpayer dollars, and make smart investments on behalf of the people of our state. These ratings re-affirm our commitment to those principles,” said Governor John Carney.

“It’s no secret that we face budget challenges. But we are committed to working toward a sustainable, long-term solution that allows us to focus on improving our schools, protecting our environment and ensuring that Delaware remains a competitive place for businesses to create good jobs.”

Moody’s Investors Service, Fitch Ratings, and Standard & Poor’s Rating Services continue to recognize the state’s strong fiscal practices and, in doing so, cited the state’s proactive management style, strong financial operations, and history of maintaining ample budgetary reserves.

“We expect Delaware’s long history of what we view as prudent fiscal management to continue as the state maneuvers through near-term budgetary challenges and mounting long-term liabilities,” Standard & Poor’s Rating Services said in its report.

The ratings were released as the state prepares to take bids on $225 million in general obligation bonds on Thursday, February 23. The bonds will be sold to fund state objectives – including improvements to schools, libraries, and other state facilities.

A Triple-A rating will allow the state to fund these projects at the lowest possible interest rates.

“Delaware has established solid, conservative principles for sound financial management,” said Finance Secretary Rick Geisenberger. “We remain committed to making financial decisions that protect the interests of our residents, businesses and taxpayers.”

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Governor Carney Announces Economic Development Working Group Members

Membership guidelines outlined in executive order

 

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney announced Wednesday the members of the Economic Development Working Group who will develop recommendations for implementing a public-private partnership at the Delaware Economic Development Office.

The working group will explore how state government can work with the private sector to improve economic development efforts in Delaware, including ways to attract new, growing companies to the state, build a stronger entrepreneurial community, and support innovation.

“Over the next several weeks, the working group will explore how we can best position Delaware to be at the top of the list for businesses looking to start-up, grow or relocate,” said Governor Carney. “We will work with private industry to help grow our economy so that Delaware can compete for good-paying jobs.”

The Economic Development Working Group members include:

  • Mark Brainard – President, Delaware Technical Community College (Co-Chair)
  • Doneene Damon – Executive Vice President, Richards, Layton & Finger, P.A.
  • Mark Kleinschmidt – President, New Castle County Chamber of Commerce
  • Nick Lambrow – President, M&T Bank, Delaware Region
  • Jim Maravelias – President, Delaware AFL-CIO
  • Terry Murphy – President, Bayhealth Medical Center & Chairman of the Delaware Business Roundtable
  • Mona Parikh – Community Engagement Liaison, UD Horn Program in Entrepreneurship
  • Sen. Brian Pettyjohn – Senate Republican Caucus
  • Albert Shields – Policy Director, Office of Governor Carney
  • Rep. Bryon Short – House Democratic Caucus
  • Richelle Vible – Executive Director, Catholic Charities
  • Sen. Jack Walsh – Senate Democratic Caucus
  • Rod Ward – President, Corporation Service Company (Co-Chair)
  • Bernice Whaley – Director, Delaware Economic Development Office
  • Rep. Lyndon Yearick – House Republican Caucus

 The working group will begin its work in February and report back to Governor Carney by April 7, 2017. The group includes a member from each of the General Assembly’s four caucuses; four representatives from the business community; the Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office; the Governor’s Policy Director; and representatives from the nonprofit sector, higher education, labor and the public.

The Economic Development Working Group was established by Executive Order Number One, which Governor Carney issued on his first day in office.

 

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Text of Executive Order

EXECUTIVE ORDER

NUMBER ONE

 

TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES

RE: CREATING A WORKING GROUP TO CONSIDER A PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE DELAWARE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OFFICE AND DELAWARE’S BUSINESS COMMUNITY

WHEREAS, Delaware’s economy is undergoing a fundamental shift toward industries and employment that require innovation and higher levels of skill.

WHEREAS, Delaware must embrace this change and focus its economic development efforts on making investments that result in jobs for Delaware workers, maintaining a business climate and infrastructure that supports economic growth, and developing a culture of entrepreneurship to grow the industries and jobs of the future. 

WHEREAS, Delaware’s business community has valuable information about emerging markets, the skills needed in a modern workforce, and resources to invest in new opportunities.

WHEREAS, the strength of Delaware’s economy will increasingly rely on identifying opportunities for growth and developing a well-trained workforce to meet the needs of existing and potential Delaware companies.

WHEREAS, allowing the Delaware Economic Development Office to work in partnership with Delaware’s business community will enhance the resources available for job creation and economic growth.

NOW, THEREFORE, I JOHN C. CARNEY, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Delaware, do hereby declare and order the following:

1. A working group is hereby established to study how Delaware’s public and private sectors can work together to improve the process of economic development in Delaware, including, in particular, to attract more growing and fledgling companies to the state and to build a stronger entrepreneurial community (the “Working Group”).

2. The Working Group shall consist of no fewer than 14 members to include:

  1. Four members of the General Assembly, to include one member from each of the House Majority and Minority caucuses, who shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House, and one member from each of the Senate Majority and Minority caucuses, who shall be appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate;
  2. The Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO);
  3. Four members of Delaware’s business community, to be recommended by the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce;
  4. The Governor’s Policy Director; and
  5. Representatives from the higher education, non-profit and labor union communities, and one member of the public, to be appointed by the Governor.

  3.  The Governor may appoint a chair and vice-chair, or two co-chairs, one each from the public and private sectors.

  4. The Governor may increase the size of the Working Group and appoint additional members at his pleasure. 

  5. The Working Group shall convene in February and shall consider at least the following matters:

  1. All duties and responsibilities of DEDO mandated by the Delaware Code and other applicable Delaware law;
  2. All additional duties and responsibilities currently being undertaken by DEDO;
  3. Current DEDO staffing and funding levels;
  4. The extent to which other states in the United States have used public-private partnerships (PPPs) as a tool to promote innovation and build an entrepreneurial community, the significant features of those partnerships and the degree to which they have achieved measurable results; and 
  5. The conditions necessary to making effective use of a PPP to foster economic development in Delaware.

  6. No later than April 7, 2017, the Working Group shall produce a report to the Governor that includes at least the following:

  1. Policy recommendations regarding the use of a PPP to foster economic development in Delaware, particularly in the area of strengthening the environment for entrepreneurs;
  2. The features essential to the success of any recommended PPP, including but not limited to a proposed governance structure and an estimate of necessary appropriations from the General Assembly;
  3. A proposed process and timeline for implementing any policy recommendation; and
  4. A draft of any necessary implementing legislation.

   7. The Working Group shall dissolve on April 7, 2017 unless reconstituted by further executive order.

                                                            APPROVED this 18th date of January 2017.


Governor Carney Accepts Policy Report from Transition Committee

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney today received a final report from the Transition Committee that includes recommended action steps in order to achieve policy objectives set forth by the Governor. The Transition Committee created an “Action Plan for Delaware” as a guide for Governor Carney and his administration.

“Thank you to the entire Transition team and all Delawareans who contributed ideas and comments on how we can make Delaware an even better place to live and work,” said Governor Carney. “This report is thorough yet succinct, and it’s something that we can act on. You have put in many hours into helping create an inclusive and diverse report during our transition, and now it’s time to take action.”

“It was a privilege to serve on the Transition team with three dozen committed Delawareans from across our state, and to produce this report on behalf of Governor Carney and the people of Delaware,” said Bill Bowser, Chair of Governor Carney’s Transition Team. “We took the work seriously, presenting detailed action steps that offer a path forward as the new administration takes office. Thank you to the Governor and everyone involved on the four Transition committees, who worked around the clock on this effort over the past two months.”

The Transition Team was divided into four policy committees to develop policy proposals for the Governor’s consideration. The policy committees focused on: Economic Development & Healthy Environment (Doneene Damon, co-chair); Public Safety & Strong Neighborhoods (Charles Madden, co-chair); Education & Healthy Families (Lolita Lopez, co-chair); and Budget & Workforce (Todd Lawson, co-chair). The committees reached out to stakeholders, held public meetings and invited the public to submit written comment.

A link to the full report can be found here: http://de.gov/transitionreport


Governor Carney Signs Executive Order to Explore Public-Private Partnership at DEDO

Working group will issue report by April 7

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney signed his first Executive Order on Wednesday, establishing a 14-member working group to develop recommendations for implementing a public-private partnership at the Delaware Economic Development Office.

The group will explore how state government can work with the private sector to improve economic development efforts in Delaware, including ways to attract new, growing companies to the state, build a stronger entrepreneurial community, and support innovation.

“We are getting started immediately to make sure Delaware is positioned to secure new, good-paying jobs of the future. This is job one,” said Governor Carney. “Delaware’s economy is in a period of significant transition, and we must adjust our efforts to compete with other states and countries for jobs and talent. Over the next several months, we will work with members of the General Assembly in both parties, and the business community on behalf of the people of Delaware.”

Bernice Whaley, Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office, will continue in her role while the working group completes its work.

The working group will begin its work in February and report back to Governor Carney by April 7, 2017. The group will include a member from each of the General Assembly’s four caucuses; four representatives from the business community; the Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office; the Governor’s Policy Director; and representatives from the nonprofit sector, higher education, labor and the public.

“A public-private partnership has great potential to open doors for our state’s economic development. We need a collaborative effort to provide the best opportunity for businesses of all sizes to start, grow and thrive,” said House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf. “Governor Carney is taking the first step by bringing all sides to the table to make this a reality. I am looking forward to taking the next step when the group completes its work.”

“I want to thank Governor Carney for making this his top priority on day one,” said Senate President Pro Tempore David B. McBride. “Delaware has come a long way since the recession, but if we’re going to continue to add jobs faster than any state in the region, we need to stay ahead of them. That means rethinking the way our Economic Development Office engages with our state’s vibrant business and entrepreneurial communities in a way that allows us to leverage resources and be good stewards of taxpayer dollars.”

“The world is never static,” said Delaware House Minority Leader Danny Short, R-Seaford. “I grew up in a community where a single company, the DuPont Nylon plant, employed thousands of people. Now, most of those jobs are gone. Reassessing our state’s strengths and weaknesses, and adopting policies to capitalize on the former, will ultimately help us foster an environment in which Delaware businesses thrive and new employers are drawn here.”

“I’m glad the business community is really asserting themselves more so than they have in the past. I look forward to working with the Roundtable and Governor Carney on this initiative,” said Senate Minority Whip Greg Lavelle, R-Sharpley. “Forming a working group is a good idea and we’ll see what comes out in the end, because as the Governor said, ‘The devil is in the details,’ but anything we can do to strengthen our economic growth and our reach and our impact in state government in working with the private sector, I think we should do.”

“The Business Roundtable and the entire business community welcomes the opportunity to work with Governor Carney, the General Assembly and other stakeholders to help develop a new, collaborative approach to economic development,” said Terry Murphy, President and CEO of Bayhealth and Chairman of the Delaware Business Roundtable. “Properly structured to include leadership and involvement from both the public and private sectors with a focus on emerging business sectors, a new partnership for economic development has the power to be transformative for Delaware.”

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EXECUTIVE ORDER
NUMBER ONE

TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
RE: CREATING A WORKING GROUP TO CONSIDER A PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN THE DELAWARE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OFFICE AND DELAWARE’S BUSINESS COMMUNITY

WHEREAS, Delaware’s economy is undergoing a fundamental shift toward industries and employment that require innovation and higher levels of skill.

WHEREAS, Delaware must embrace this change and focus its economic development efforts on making investments that result in jobs for Delaware workers, maintaining a business climate and infrastructure that supports economic growth, and developing a culture of entrepreneurship to grow the industries and jobs of the future.

WHEREAS, Delaware’s business community has valuable information about emerging markets, the skills needed in a modern workforce, and resources to invest in new opportunities.

WHEREAS, the strength of Delaware’s economy will increasingly rely on identifying opportunities for growth and developing a well-trained workforce to meet the needs of existing and potential Delaware companies.

WHEREAS, allowing the Delaware Economic Development Office to work in partnership with Delaware’s business community will enhance the resources available for job creation and economic growth.

NOW, THEREFORE, I JOHN C. CARNEY, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Delaware, do hereby declare and order the following:

1. A working group is hereby established to study how Delaware’s public and private sectors can work together to improve the process of economic development in Delaware, including, in particular, to attract more growing and fledgling companies to the state and to build a stronger entrepreneurial community (the “Working Group”).

2. The Working Group shall consist of no fewer than 14 members to include:

a. Four members of the General Assembly, to include one member from each of the House Majority and Minority caucuses, who shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House, and one member from each of the Senate Majority and Minority caucuses, who shall be appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate;

b. The Director of the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO);

c. Four members of Delaware’s business community, to be recommended by the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce;

d. The Governor’s Policy Director; and

e. Representatives from the higher education, non-profit and labor union communities, and one member of the public, to be appointed by the Governor.

3. The Governor may appoint a chair and vice-chair, or two co-chairs, one each from the public and private sectors.

4. The Governor may increase the size of the Working Group and appoint additional members at his pleasure.

5. The Working Group shall convene in February and shall consider at least the following matters:

a. All duties and responsibilities of DEDO mandated by the Delaware Code and other applicable Delaware law;

b. All additional duties and responsibilities currently being undertaken by DEDO;

c. Current DEDO staffing and funding levels;

d. The extent to which other states in the United States have used public-private partnerships (PPPs) as a tool to promote innovation and build an entrepreneurial community, the significant features of those partnerships and the degree to which they have achieved measurable results; and

e. The conditions necessary to making effective use of a PPP to foster economic development in Delaware.

6. No later than April 7, 2017, the Working Group shall produce a report to the Governor that includes at least the following:

a. Policy recommendations regarding the use of a PPP to foster economic development in Delaware, particularly in the area of strengthening the environment for entrepreneurs;

b. The features essential to the success of any recommended PPP, including but not limited to a proposed governance structure and an estimate of necessary appropriations from the General Assembly;

c. A proposed process and timeline for implementing any policy recommendation; and

d. A draft of any necessary implementing legislation.

7. The Working Group shall dissolve on April 7, 2017 unless reconstituted by further executive order.

APPROVED this 18th date of January 2017.

___________________________________
John C. Carney
Governor

ATTEST:
___________________________________
Secretary of State