52nd Annual Governor’s Prayer Breakfast to Be Held on May 3 in Dover

(DOVER, Del.) – The public is warmly invited to attend the 52nd Annual Governor’s Prayer Breakfast on Thursday, May 3 at the Modern Maturity Center in Dover. The focus of this year’s event is “Compassion.”

This year's guest speaker, Dr. Tony CampoloThe guest speaker will be author, pastor, and social activist Dr. Tony Campolo. A frequent media commentator on religious, social and political matters, Dr. Campolo has appeared on television programs like The Colbert Report, Nightline, Crossfire, Politically Incorrect, The Charlie Rose Show, Larry King Live, CNN Dayside, CNN News and MSNBC News. He is the author of 38 books and is an ordained minister.

Dr. Campolo is Professor Emeritus of Sociology at Eastern University in St. Davids, Pennsylvania and also previously served on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of Eastern College and earned a Ph.D. from Temple University. He is the founder and President of the Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education (EAPE), which has worked to create, nurture and support programs for “at-risk” children in cities across North America and has helped establish schools and universities in several developing countries.

The Modern Maturity Center is located at 1121 Forrest Avenue in Dover. Doors will open at 6:30 a.m., with the buffet breakfast beginning at 7 a.m. The program will begin promptly at 7:30 a.m.

Ticket information: Tickets are $20 each or $200 for a table of 10. Tickets may be purchased by visiting http://gpb12.eventbrite.com (payment by check or credit card). If you cannot register online, please call Karin Duvall at (302) 577-8339 or Gail Stallings at (302) 857-5246 to purchase your tickets. Checks should be made payable to Governor’s Prayer Breakfast, P. O. Box 186, Dover, DE 19903-0186. Ticket sales either online or by phone must be received no later than April 27.

New Top Dog for the First Family

Click here for photos of the new puppy

WILMINGTON – Delaware’s First Family has a new member and her name is “Rue.”   “Rue,” a playful, three-month old puppy with some pretty big paws has recently joined the Markell household.

“We’re in the getting-to-know you phase,” said the Governor. “Rue’s finding her way around and has been pretty well-behaved.  Everyday her tail wags a little bit more.”

The Markells adopted the mixed breed puppy (possibly part Shepherd, Boxer, Lab ) from the Delaware Humane Association in Wilmington.     Her name comes from a character in the movie, “The Hunger Games,” who is small and easily underestimated by other competitors.

“Rue loves people and has plenty of energy,” said First Lady Carla Markell.  “She is adorable, fun and pretty smart.  Rue has been fetching and understands the command ‘sit.’”  Rue and our cat, Belle, haven’t quite made their peace yet.  They are giving each other space, but every now and then when they are in the same room, it’s ‘interesting.’”

Rue-the-dog joins Belle-the-cat and Norma-the-goldfish in the Markell household.  Belle was rescued from a dumpster in 1998.

Lobbying Disclosure Bill Shines Critical Sunlight on Lawmaking Process

Delaware State SealDOVER – A bill that would dramatically expand disclosure requirements for lobbyists was introduced today with broad bipartisan support. Governor Jack Markell joined Senate President Pro Tempore Tony DeLuca, House Speaker Bob Gilligan and legislators to introduce Senate Bill 185.

“How can you tell who’s working to influence the bills that could become the laws that will affect your life? The problem is, in many cases right now, you can’t, because state disclosure laws simply haven’t kept up. This proposal helps solve that problem, bringing needed light to the process,” Markell said. “As a Delawarean, you shouldn’t have to be in the lobby of Legislative Hall or in the offices of a state agency to know who’s trying to shape a law that matters to you. This bill would make that information more available.”

Currently, lobbyists only need to disclose that they are working for a client, but do not need to share what work they are doing on that clients behalf. Senate Bill 185 would require that lobbyists specifically identify each piece of legislation, each area of the budget or the bond bill, or each proposed state agency regulation that they are lobbying to change.

“This will enable people to go online and see who’s lobbying on a specific bill,” said DeLuca. “The intent is to make the information transparent so the public is given a better idea of lobbyists’ interests.”

The new disclosures must occur within five business days of the lobbyist having “direct communication” with a legislator or the Lieutenant Governor or Governor on a bill, or within same time frame from communication with a state agency employee regarding a proposed regulation. If the communication takes place before a bill is introduced or proposed regulation published, the disclosure will be within five business days of the bill introduction or regulation publication.

“Improving government transparency and public access to information has been a top priority of mine since I became Speaker in 2009,” said Gilligan. “In this age of technology, there’s no reason why the public should not be able to easily find out which lobbyists are lobbying for a particular piece of legislation. This will remove any perceived shroud of secrecy and give the public more information about the legislative process.”

The reporting by the lobbyists will be done electronically and all the reports will display on a public website. The Governor thanked Common Cause for their advocacy on this issue.

“A lobbyist who spends every day in the state capitol operates in a different reality than the average citizen. This bill opens an important window on what’s really going on in Dover, and it will make it much easier to track what lobbyists are doing and to hold them accountable,” said James Browing of Common Cause.

Governor’s Weekly Message: Making Progress Together on Our Race to the Top

DOVER – In his weekly message, Governor Jack Markell talks about the progress Delaware is making on the two year “mile marker” since winning the federal Race to the Top as federal Education Secretary Arne Duncan visits Delaware.

“Because we are in constant competition – with states across our country and countries all over the world – in a race to ensure our kids can graduate ready to succeed in work or college,  the stakes are enormous,” said the Governor.  “Quality education remains a top factor when it comes to companies deciding where to launch, where to hire and where to expand.  The strength of our schools impacts those decisions. And while those efforts were underway before Race to the Top, winning gave us additional resources and an additional imperative to make those changes real.”

At noon every Friday, the Governor’s office releases a new Weekly Message in video, audio, and transcript form.  The message is available on:

YouTube: http://youtu.be/LK-uu8XgsoQ
Delaware.Gov: http://governor.delaware.gov/information/podcast_video.shtml
By email: Please contact our press team to subscribe to our press list
Facebook: www.facebook.com/governormarkell
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Transcript of the Governor’s Weekly Message: Making Progress Together on our Race to the Top

Governor’s Weekly Message Transcript: Making Progress Together on Our Race to the Top


Usually when you win a race, you get to stop and catch your breath. But instead of taking a break after we won the federal Race to the Top to build some of the nation’s strongest public schools, Delaware had to start running even harder.

Because we are in constant competition – with states across our country and countries all over the world – in a race to ensure our kids can graduate ready to succeed in work or college, the stakes are enormous.

Quality education remains a top factor when it comes to companies deciding where to launch, where to hire and where to expand. Hiring decisions are being made by companies right now. And the strength of our schools impacts those decisions. That economic imperative is why – for years – Delaware’s committed itself to the hard work of raising student achievement. It’s why educators and employers, parents and administrators, community leaders and public officials have been focused together on making good schools even better. And while those efforts were underway before Race to the Top, winning gave us additional resources and an additional imperative to make those changes real.

Our nation’s Secretary of Education Arne Duncan wanted to come to Delaware for an honest discussion about the distance we’ve travelled and the road ahead.

He wanted a chance to see some of what’s working – for example, using data to help drive decisions on how to better help our kids. But he also wanted to make clear there are going to be starts and stops – that some things are only learned the hard way, and if there were only easy answers, there’d be no point in asking hard questions.

Our message back to him is – at least in Delaware – we’re doing this hard work together. We’re focused on where we can make the most progress, where we can have the greatest impact for our kids, and where we still need to push ahead to keep Delaware, moving forward.