Governor Carney Signs Order Creating Uniform Anti-Discrimination Policy

Executive Order will result in a uniform policy by April 1

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Wednesday signed Executive Order Six, establishing a uniform anti-discrimination policy across state government.

Creation of a consistent anti-discrimination policy was a recommendation of the Action Plan for Delaware, the report submitted to Governor Carney by his Transition Team.

The executive order signed by Governor Carney on Wednesday calls for the creation of a new policy by April 1.

“I am committed to building a state government that is representative of all of the people we serve,” said Governor Carney. “It’s important that we root out both explicit and implicit acts of discrimination. This executive order is an important first step that will lead to a consistent process for identifying and eliminating discrimination across all agencies of state government.”

The uniform policy will include statewide anti-discrimination guidelines and complaint procedures to be followed by each Executive Branch Agency.

“Discrimination in any form is unacceptable, and this executive order is a critical first step to making sure that happens,” said Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long. “We must do everything in our power to uplift and support an environment of equality, tolerance and fairness and prevent discrimination and racism from happening.”

“Today, with the signing of this executive order, our State takes a positive step forward,” said Hanifa Shabazz, President, Wilmington City Council and Chair of the Delaware Black Caucus. “We applaud Governor Carney for his commitment and action toward establishing a work environment where individuals are treated with respect and dignity, free from harassment, discrimination, or retaliation. Today, also sends a strong message to the victims – those that came forward to file complaints and those that chose to remain silent – their voices have been heard and Delaware will be a better place to work because of them.”

“We must work to change the workplace culture in Delaware so it is one that promotes fair and equal opportunities as well as a safe place for those to share their opinion without fear of discrimination. I have hope that Governor Carney’s executive order will move us forward,” said State Representative Stephanie T. Bolden, D-Wilmington East, treasurer of the Delaware Black Caucus.


Governor Carney Reestablishes the Family Services Cabinet Council

Council will help coordinate crucial public and private services for Delaware families

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney signed Executive Order Five on Tuesday, reestablishing the Family Services Cabinet Council to help coordinate public and private services for Delaware families.

Delaware families continue to face significant challenges – including the high cost of child care; violence and poverty in their neighborhoods; the impact of caring for an aging family member; and the challenges of navigating an economy in transition. The Family Services Cabinet Council will be charged with coordinating public and private services that are often fragmented, and proposing changes to current programs to make the delivery of state services more effective.

Governor Carney will serve as chair of the Council.

Reestablishment of the Council, which was first established under Governor Tom Carper, was an action called for by Governor Carney’s Transition Team in their Action Plan for Delaware. The Council also will work closely with the Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board (GEAR), which Governor Carney created this month to identify cost savings and efficiencies in state government, and to more effectively operate state programs and services.

“Our challenge is to determine whether the programs and services we offer are effective in moving families out of poverty, improving our system of education and creating opportunities for all Delaware families to succeed,” said Governor Carney. “That requires all of us – government agencies, nonprofits and private business – to work together. That also requires that we measure our progress. The reestablishment of the Family Services Cabinet Council will help us do just that, and make a meaningful difference in the lives of Delaware families.”

The Council will be tasked with implementing innovative tools and strategies for addressing a series of specific issues, including: breaking the school-to-prison pipeline; improving access to early childhood education; increasing the availability of affordable housing; improving access to substance abuse treatment; reducing recidivism in Delaware’s correctional system; expanding job training opportunities; and reducing violence in Delaware’s neighborhoods.

The Council will include eight members of Governor Carney’s Cabinet – the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth, and Their Families; the Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services; the Secretary of the Department of Education; the Secretary of the Department of Labor; the Secretary of the Department of Safety and Homeland Security; the Director of the Delaware State Housing Authority; the Director of the Office of Management and Budget; and the Commissioner of the Department of Correction.

“It is our duty to ensure that our children and our families have the necessary tools to be healthy, prosperous, and safe,” said Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long. “The reestablishment of this Council will break down silos in state government and allow for a more collaborative and coordinated approach to address some of the most critical issues we face, so that every Delawarean has a fair shot.”


Statement from Governor John Carney on Bomb Threats to Siegel JCC

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor Carney released the following statement after a bomb threat to Siegel Jewish Community Center in Wilmington was cleared:

“The continued bomb threats to Siegel JCC must stop. These hateful actions place a shadow over our state and country. Our law enforcement officials will continue to work diligently to find the individuals responsible and hold them accountable.”


Governor Carney Nominates Commissioner Mary S. Much as Family Court Judge

Commissioner Much previously served in the Office of Disciplinary Council

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Friday announced the nomination of Family Court Commissioner Mary S. Much to serve as a Family Court Judge in New Castle County.

Governor Carney’s nomination must be confirmed by the Delaware Senate.

“Commissioner Much is well-prepared to serve as a Judge on the Family Court,” said Governor Carney. “She has the experience, knowledge and judgment necessary to fairly decide cases that come before the Family Court – cases that have a real impact on the lives of Delawareans. I am confident she is the right person for the job.”

The Honorable Mary S. Much has served as a Family Court Commissioner in New Castle County since May 2006, and previously served as a Family Court Commissioner from 1994 to 1999. Commissioner Much was mostly recently re-appointed last year by Governor Jack Markell and confirmed by the Delaware Senate. From 1999 to 2006, she served in the Office of Disciplinary Counsel of the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware. Earlier, she spent three years as a Deputy Attorney General at the Delaware Department of Justice. Commissioner Much is a 1977 graduate of Wilmington Friends School, and holds degrees from Villanova University and the Delaware Law School at Widener University.


Governor Carney Creates Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board

Governor signs Executive Order #4 establishing the GEAR Board to identify efficiencies

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney signed Executive Order Four on Thursday, establishing the Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board (GEAR) to identify, on an ongoing basis, opportunities for cost savings in state government.

Members of the board are listed in the text of the executive order, which is available below.

The board, which will begin meeting in the next month, will develop recommendations for increasing efficiency and effectiveness across state government. Its members will explore ways to improve the strategic financial planning process, and expand the use of metrics in determining how to allocate state resources.

The board’s recommendations will be intended to consistently improve the way the state delivers services, and to improve the quality of those services.

“We need a serious, permanent effort to identify cost savings and efficiencies in state government, and that’s what we’ll get with the GEAR Board” said Governor Carney. “We must do things differently than we’ve always done them, and find smarter ways to operate more effectively and protect taxpayer dollars. Delawareans expect us to responsibly manage their money, and we’re committed to doing just that.”

Each year, by December 1, the GEAR Board will submit a report to the Governor, including recommendations that may be included in the recommended state budget. Recommendations may include ways that state government agencies can share services, and new methods for improving the recruitment, development and retention of state employees.

By May 1 of this year, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget and the Secretary of Finance will produce a report for the Governor, including recommendations for the General Assembly’s Joint Finance Committee to review as its members finalize the Fiscal Year 2018 state budget.

Annual reports of the GEAR Board will be made public.

“Our challenge as a government is providing the services that residents want and need in their daily lives, while keeping costs down,” said Representative Melanie George Smith, D-Bear, co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee. “We on the Joint Finance Committee appreciate what Governor Carney is doing by looking for ways to cut costs, and fund services responsibly for our taxpayers. Our goal is to continue providing necessary, quality services at a good value.”

“I think Delawareans should be heartened by the efforts of both the legislative branch – through the Joint Finance Committee – and now the Governor’s Office, to do a top-down review of our budget as we grapple with challenges this year and beyond,” said Senator Harris McDowell, D-Wilmington North, co-chair of the Joint Finance Committee. “We are all committed to leaving no stone unturned when it comes to balancing our budget in a way that protects working families. And on June 30 we will deliver a balanced budget that meets the needs of all our citizens.”

“It’s prudent to constantly reassess how we can make government more effective and responsive,” said Delaware House Minority Leader Danny Short, R-Seaford. “My hope is that this effort produces tangible suggestions that lead to implemented results, not only to improve government, but to increase the success of our economic development initiatives.”

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EXECUTIVE ORDER
NUMBER FOUR
TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
RE: ESTABLISHING THE GOVERNMENT EFFICIENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY REVIEW BOARD

WHEREAS, the United States and the State of Delaware have experienced sustained but modest economic growth over the past eight years in the aftermath of the nation’s extraordinary economic setbacks suffered in 2008; and

WHEREAS, the combination of modest economic growth, a decline in labor force participation rates due to an aging population, and the State’s unique revenue mix have each contributed to modest revenue growth over the past eight years and DEFAC has forecasted that revenue growth may continue to be constrained by these factors for years in the future; and

WHEREAS, the State of Delaware current forecasts a $350 million gap for fiscal year 2018 and DEFAC anticipates continuing budget gaps well into the future unless expenditure growth is constrained and/or revenues are increased; and

WHEREAS, the State of Delaware is committed to the most transparent and responsible use of taxpayer funds as it strives to overcome fiscal challenges, while promoting a smarter and more efficient State government; and
WHEREAS, the State has periodically undertaken top to bottom reviews of State spending but has failed to institute a permanent and ongoing program to continuously identify, monitor, and implement programs, policies and processes that bend the cost curve downwards, boost efficiency and cut costs elsewhere within State government.

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. The Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board (GEAR) is hereby established to develop recommendations for increasing efficiency and effectiveness across State government, including by improving the strategic planning process, improving the use of metrics in resource allocation decisions and developing continuous improvement practices.
  2. GEAR shall consist of the following members:
    a. The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB);
    b. The Secretary of Finance;
    c. The Secretary of the Department of Technology and Information;
    d. The Controller General;
    e. The State Treasurer;
    f. The Chief Justice of the Delaware Supreme Court;
    g. The Secretary of Health and Social Services;
    h. The Secretary of Education;
    i. A representative from the Delaware business community appointed by the Governor; and
    j. A representative from AFSCME appointed by the Governor.
  3. A Chair and Vice Chair, or Co-Chairs, shall be appointed from among the members and shall serve in that capacity at the pleasure of the Governor.
  4. Members serving by virtue of position may appoint a designee to serve in their stead and at their pleasure.
  5. The Governor may increase the size of GEAR and appoint additional members at his pleasure.
  6. The Executive Sponsors of the initiative will be the Director of OMB, the Secretary of Finance, and the Controller General.
  7. GEAR shall convene in February, or soon thereafter, and its scope of work shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
    a. Developing ideas for potential cost savings and driving implementation of cost savings opportunities for shared services across State government and public education, including in areas such as human resources, information technology, accounting and financial management, management of State assets, professional development and the use of administrative support positions, to better focus resources on the direct delivery of services to the public;
    b. Identifying the numerous quality improvement initiatives existing across State government and recommending ways the initiatives might work together to  establish continuous improvement programs across the State, including by exploring and expanding partnerships with the Delaware Manufacturing Extension Partnership, the Delaware Quality Partnership, and the State’s higher education network;
    c. Recommending changes to the Delaware Government Accountability Act that will better drive strategic planning, help develop meaningful performance metrics, foster more effective monitoring of performance and allocation of scarce resources as part of the budget process, and promote continuous improvement programs throughout State government; and
    d. Identifying changes in the State personnel system that would foster a culture of continuous improvement and improve the recruitment, development and retention of State employees.
  8. No later than May 1, 2017, the Director of OMB and the Secretary of Finance shall issue to the Governor a report containing preliminary recommendations they wish the Joint Finance Committee to review when considering the fiscal year 2018 budget. The preliminary report of GEAR shall be a public document.
  9. No later than December 1 of each year, or at an earlier date requested by the Governor, GEAR shall submit to the Governor a report containing recommendations the Governor may include in the Governor’s Recommended Budget. The completed report of GEAR shall be a public document.
  10. Administrative support for GEAR shall be provided by existing staff within OMB, the Department of Finance, the Department of Education, and other State government agencies whose employees have experience in quality management and continuous improvement practices.

APPROVED this 16th date of February 2017.

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John C. Carney
Governor

ATTEST:
___________________________________
Secretary of State