DHSS to Expand Community Well-Being Initiative to Kent County

Goal is to Connect At-Risk Community Members to Substance Use Disorder Services

WILMINGTON (Sept. 19, 2022) – As a way to directly connect community members struggling with opioid use disorder and other behavioral health issues to treatment, recovery and prevention services, the Community Well-Being Initiative (CWBI), which began in 2021 in high-risk areas of New Castle County, will be expanded to serve targeted neighborhoods in Kent County in collaboration with Delaware State University, Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) Secretary Molly Magarik announced today at a press conference at the Chase Center.

“This is about meeting communities where they are and offering on-the-ground support to neighborhood residents who have been significantly impacted by the opioid epidemic in our state,” Secretary Magarik said. “It is important that we are expanding the Community Well-Being Initiative to Kent County to help address the trauma and toxic stress that community members there experience as well. From the success of the New Castle County pilot, we have seen how important it is for Community Well-being Ambassadors to have lived experience and to reside in the areas they serve.”

The initiative, a partnership between the Department of Health and Social Services’ Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) and the University of Delaware’s Partnership for Health Communities, began in 2021 by identifying four ZIP codes in New Castle County – 19801, 19802 and 19805 in Wilmington and 19720 in New Castle – with high rates of fatal and non-fatal overdoses, and high rates of drug arrests. The initiative is funded through the Delaware State Opioid Response (SOR) grant from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

In the pilot, 24 Community Well-being Ambassadors, who were hired by the nonprofit Network Connect and embedded in the neighborhoods, worked to identify and engage with individuals and families who typically do not seek formal treatment and recovery services for opioid and other substance use disorders. By meeting people where they are, the ambassadors, who work through host sites in the community, were able to build trust with community members. From May 2021 to March 2022, 450 community members engaged with ambassadors, for a total of 2,522 total interactions, including:

  • Engaging people with behavioral health needs when they were ready to engage.
  • Improving coordination across referrals and access to additional social services, including employment, housing and transportation.
  • Providing prevention education and care management for opioid and other substance use disorders, along with support for mental, physical, social and spiritual well-being.
  • Preparing person-centered, peer-supported, long-term treatment support for individuals, families and communities.
  • Building prepared and resilient communities.

The expansion to Kent County will involve Delaware State University as the managing partner of the initiative, along with DSAMH and UD’s Partnership for Healthy Communities. Additional Kent County partners, include Network Connect, Minds in Motion Integrated Behavioral Health, the Center for Structural Equity/Community Intervention Team, GBA Consulting, and the host sites:

  • Delaware Multi-Cultural Civic Organization
  • DSU Biomedical, Behavioral and Allied Health Center
  • DSU-Downtown
  • Two additional sites (pending)

“Delaware State University is elated to be a managing partner for such a phenomenal initiative. The Community Well-being Initiative aligns with our university’s core values and mission,” said Dr. Gwendolyn Scott-Jones, Dean of DSU’s Wesley College of Health and Behavioral Sciences. “This behavioral health integration and 21st-century case management model of service delivery executed by Network Connect is a monumental approach to addressing health disparities, psychological crises, substance-related disorders, mental health disorders and identifying social determinants that can help us better understand and improve health inequities. More specifically, the partnership with DSAMH, UD, Network Connect and other community partners is a way forward to provide a service integration model that will help people in their environments.”

“We are grateful to Delaware State University for being the managing partner of the Community Well-being Initiative in Kent County,” said Rita Landgraf, Director of the University of Delaware’s Partnership for Healthy Communities. “The strength of the Community Well-being Initiative is about the diversity of partners coming together, including the communities themselves, to support residents and families who aren’t used to seeking treatment for substance use disorder. The value of promoting health equity is critical to both UD and DSU, as is the experience of being an innovation incubator, piloting new ideas, evaluating how projects work, and learning what will provide that collective impact in our communities.”

The expansion in Kent County will involve ZIP codes – 19901, 19902, 19904 and 19934 – that have high rates of fatal and non-fatal overdoses and high rates of drug arrests. The initiative, which began with Network Connect hiring staff in August 2022, will launch this fall in the communities and be staffed by 16 Community Well-being Ambassadors (CWA) and two CWA Program Coordinators.

“At DSAMH, we are excited to collaborate with so many community partners, including DSU, to embed ambassadors in these at-risk neighborhoods in Kent County,” said Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DSAMH) Director Joanna Champney. “The Community Well-being Ambassadors have lived experience and provide support directly to community members in their communities. They help individuals and families identify their most pressing needs, provide relevant information, and develop strategies for addressing those needs, including a connection to behavioral health and other community services and ongoing support. Ambassadors also are trained in administering naloxone, a medication that can reverse an opioid overdose, and they distribute naloxone and other critical overdose prevention knowledge in the communities where they work.”

In the continuing New Castle County pilot, the 24 Community Well-being Ambassadors and two CWA Program Coordinators are embedded in neighborhoods and integrated with these host sites:

  • Center for Structural Equity
  • Game Changers
  • Hilltop Lutheran Neighborhood Center
  • Network Connect
  • West End Neighborhood House
  • Youth Empowerment Center

Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long, Chair of the Behavioral Health Consortium, said the Community Well-being Initiative and the Ambassador program are helping to facilitate two of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) goals under the State Opioid Response grants: to expand opioid use disorder/stimulant use disorder treatment engagement strategies and reduce barriers to accessing treatment, as well as to create a greater strategic focus on racial and ethnic populations in SAMHSA’s investments.

“As we saw in the targeted outreach in New Castle County and now in the expansion into Kent County, the Community Well-being Initiative is about promoting equity,” Lt. Governor Hall-Long said. “In order to encourage more community residents to seek treatment for substance use disorder, we need to have Community Well-being Ambassadors who live in the communities, collaborating with trusted community partners and building trust with the people they serve. This is another important way that we are building a stronger and healthier Delaware for more of our residents.”

“Our ambassadors really focus on everyday life skills,” said Cierra Hall-Hipkins, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of Network Connect. “They have people come to them with real-life situations that they, too, experienced themselves and they are able to be peer connectors – life coaches, so to speak – for everyday folks in our community. It’s a game-changer.”

In 2021, Delaware reported 515 overdose deaths, an increase of more than 15% over 2020, according to the Delaware Division of Forensic Science (DFS). In Kent County, overdose deaths increased 74% from 50 in 2020 to 87 in 2021. DFS also reported that 425 of the 515 deaths involved fentanyl, a synthetic pain reliever that is 50-100 times more potent than morphine.

 


Delaware Division of the Arts Announces First Round of Grants in Support of Arts Projects for Fiscal Year 2023

This year the Division will invest nearly $3 million
in more than 100 arts and community organizations

WILMINGTON, DEL. (July 15, 2022) – The Delaware Division of the Arts is investing nearly $3 million in more than 110 arts and community organizations that will serve Delawareans statewide with arts programming and services, arts education, and arts marketing and promotion. This first round of funding for FY2023 includes: General Operating Support, Project Support, Arts Stabilization, StartUp and Education Resource grants.

“Artists and arts organizations state-wide have been on the cutting edge of innovation and community impact over the last two years. As they turn to a new phase of recovery from the shutdowns related to Delaware’s public health emergency, it is critical that the Delaware Division of the Arts continue our significant investment into the sector,” said Jessica Ball, director of the Delaware Division of the Arts. “This investment in the creative workforce—artists and organizations alike—enhances education, stimulates local economies, and enriches our communities.”

“Delaware’s financial support of our artists and arts organizations is engrained into the fabric of what we do at the state level,” said Secretary of State Jeffrey Bullock. “Our roster of artists and arts institutions makes the State attractive for our residents, employers, and employees who spend their free time and money to enjoy the many experiences available to them. Attending an event in the State is not just about the admission price to that organization, but so often includes secondary spending at restaurants and local shops. Supporting the arts makes sense any way you look at it.”

Grant updates for fiscal year 2023:

  • TranspARTation has returned! The grant will re-open in August 2022 to support travel expenses, to include buses, fuel, parking and toll costs of up to $500 (an increase of $200 from previous years) for schools to travel to Delaware arts and cultural institutions and venues in order for students to attend arts performances, events, and exhibits.
  • Artist Opportunity Grants have increased to $1,000. Artist Opportunity Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to support unique professional and artistic development and presentation opportunities for artists. Applicants can request up to 80% of the opportunity cost not to exceed $1,000. Quarterly deadlines: January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1.

The awards include:

  • General Operating Support for sixty-one (62) arts organizations.
  • Project Support for twenty-nine (29) community-based organizations that provide arts programming for children and adults with physical or intellectual disabilities; students whose schools are under-resourced and face multiple barriers, individuals and family members dealing with cancer; and young children and community members from across Delaware.
  • Eight (8) Arts Stabilization projects that support capital improvements and repairs to facilities owned by arts organizations.
  • StartUp Support for two emerging arts organizations, Jester Artspace and Reed’s Refuge, providing a combination of technical assistance and financial support for these new organizations.
  • Fourteen (14) education-based partnerships between Delaware’s schools, arts organizations and artists that provide teacher training and standards-based arts learning experiences for pre K-12 students statewide, in alignment with the Delaware Standards for Learning in the Visual and Performing Arts.

Grants for Fiscal Year 2023

Grant Program # Grants Amount Awarded
General Operating Support 62 $2,467,700
Project Support 29 $291.400
Arts Stabilization 8 $90,000
StartUp 2 $24,500
Education Resource 14 $130,700
TOTAL 115 $2,984,300

 

 

Funding for the Delaware Division of the Arts comes from the Delaware General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts, an independent federal agency. In addition, the funds for capital improvements grants—provided by the Arts Stabilization Fund—are drawn from the Arts Consortium of Delaware, Inc. (ArtCo) endowment. A complete list of grants for the first round of FY2023 can be found here.

Grant review panels made up of Delaware artists, arts educators, arts and nonprofit organization administrators, corporate and fundraising managers, and interested community members, provided an impartial peer review of these grant applications based on established evaluation criteria, reflecting the importance of having diverse public and expert participation in the grant-making process.

The Division also awards grants on an on-going basis throughout the year, including Arts Access grants, Artist Residencies, Individual Artist Fellowships, and Individual Artist Opportunity grants. Full grant descriptions are available on the Division’s website and at the end of the release.

Interested members of the public, artists, arts organizations, and community leaders are encouraged to visit the Division’s website to learn more about these programs. Notification of grant deadlines, guidelines and applications, as well as technical assistance opportunities are published in the monthly e-newsletter, Arts E-News. Please visit our website at arts.delaware.gov for more details.


GRANT PROGRAM DESCRIPTIONS

Arts Organizations: Non-profit Delaware organizations whose primary mission is the promotion, production, presentation, or teaching of the arts

General Operating Support – support of annual operating expenses to ensure that year-round participation in the arts is available to the people of Delaware. This grant category utilizes a three-year application cycle. Full applications are due every three years, with Interim applications due in the “off” years. Annual March 1 deadline.

Arts Stabilization – supports improvements to facilities owned (or under long-term lease) and operated by the organization. Arts Stabilization grants are funded through the Division’s participation in the Arts Consortium of Delaware, Inc. (ArtCo) endowment. Annual March 1 deadline.

StartUp – a comprehensive program of financial support, training, and consultation to develop and strengthen the management capacity of emerging arts organizations so that they can operate in a sustainable manner. Completion of the StartUp program is a prerequisite for emerging organizations seeking General Operating Support. Annual March 1 deadline.

Arts Access – supports small budget projects that include the presentation of performing, visual, literary, media, or folk arts in communities throughout the state. Applications must be submitted at least six weeks prior to the project start date, and are reviewed as they are received, beginning on July 1 of each year. Organizations that receive General Operating or Project Support from the Division are not eligible to apply. Rolling deadline.

Community-Based Organizations: Non-profit Delaware organizations, colleges, universities, and government entities that do not have the arts as their primary mission

Project Support – supports arts programs provided by CBOs that assist in the growth of a vibrant cultural environment by encouraging the continued development of arts activities in communities throughout the state. College and university projects must be non-credit and serve the general community.  Annual March 1 deadline.

Arts Access – supports small budget projects that include the presentation of performing, visual, literary, media, or folk arts in communities throughout the state. Applications must be submitted at least six weeks prior to the project start date, and are reviewed as they are received, beginning on July 1 of each year. Organizations that receive General Operating or Project Support from the Division are not eligible to apply. Rolling deadline.

Schools: Delaware pre-K through 12 public, charter, private, and parochial schools

Artist Residency – grants for residencies with visual, literary, performing, or media artists working with students in the classroom or in professional development workshops with teachers. Rolling deadline.

TranspARTation – grants that support transportation costs for schools to travel to Delaware arts and cultural institutions and venues in order for students to attend arts performances, events and exhibits. The FY2023 TranspARTation application will be available in August 2022 for the 2022-2023 school year.

Arts Organizations and Schools:

Education Resource – grants to strengthen standards-based arts education projects, programs, and activities that utilize the arts education resources of the Delaware arts community or strengthen arts organizations’ capacity to serve as professional development resources for teaching artists and educators.  Annual March 1 deadline.

Individual Artists: Delaware residents, 18 years of age or older, not enrolled in a degree-granting program

Artist Fellowships – supports individual artists in their work as visual, performing, media, folk, and/or literary artists. Applications are received and processed by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. FY2022 Masters categories are Literary and Media Arts. Annual August 1 deadline (August 2 in 2021).

Artist Opportunity Grants – provides up to $1,000 to support individual artists with unique professional and artistic development or presentation opportunities. Quarterly deadlines, January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1.

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Contact: Andrew Truscott, Program Officer, Marketing and Communications
302-577-8280, andrew.truscott@delaware.gov


The Delaware Division of the Arts, a branch of the Delaware Department of State, is dedicated to cultivating and supporting the arts to enhance the quality of life for all Delawareans. Together with its advisory body, the Delaware State Arts Council, the Division administers grants and programs that support arts programming, educate the public, increase awareness of the arts, and integrate the arts into all facets of Delaware life. For more information about the Delaware Division of the Arts, visit arts.delaware.gov or call 302-577-8278.


Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long to Hold COVID-19 Remembrance Memorial Ceremony in Dover

Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long, Dr. Karyl Rattay, Delaware Division of Public Health,  members of the General Assembly, National and Local Community Partners in partnership with the Yellow Heart Memorial, and COVID Survivors for Change will hold a COVID-19 Remembrance Memorial Ceremony to remember and honor the lives lost during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the survivors and the front-line public health and health care workers in Delaware.

Dover, Del. – Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long, a nurse and professor of nursing, will be joined by the Division of Public Health, Yellow Heart Memorial, COVID Survivors for Change and Delaware families to hold a memorial for the many victims of the COVID-19 pandemic. During the event, a memorial tree and plaque will be unveiled and the Yellow Heart Memorial will provide hearts for loved ones to fill out for their lost family members. 

Lieutenant Governor Hall-Long will join in remembering the many Delawareans who lost their battle with COVID, as well as the families impacted by those losses, on May 3, 2022, at 1:00 p.m., at an in-person memorial at the Delaware Division of Public Health’s Jesse Cooper Campus, located at 417 Federal Street in Dover, Delaware. We hope you will join us in remembering the 2,896 parents, siblings, and children who were lost to the pandemic. 

“As a nurse who joined many of our courageous health care workers to test and vaccinate Delawareans during the pandemic, I was able to witness firsthand the impact that COVID-19 had on our families across the state,” said Lt. Governor Hall-Long, Ph.D., R.N. “Many of our friends and neighbors have suffered a tremendous loss – their loved ones. Many are still suffering from the effects of surviving COVID-19 as well. I look forward to this opportunity to join, thank and honor all of these individuals and the public health and health care workers who continue to save lives and give us hope.” 

The Division of Public Health played a critical role in combating COVID. “I am honored to join the families as we remember the lives that were lost during the COVID pandemic, and all those who continue to be impacted by this life-changing pandemic,” said Dr. Karyl Rattay, Director of the Division of Public Health. “Our state’s public health and health care workforce worked tirelessly around the clock to help test, distribute information, vaccinate, educate, and provide care to all Delawareans, and they are still working to ensure that Delawareans are safe and well despite the health crisis, often sacrificing their own mental health and well-being in the process. I hope this ceremony will be the start of healing for many.” 

“Our loved ones are not just a number. Their memories will live on through us. We are their voices, we are their legacies,” said Rosie Davis with the Yellow Heart Memorial. 

“My dad was 1 of 2,896 Delawareans and almost 1 million Americans who needlessly lost their lives to Covid,” said Charonda Johnson, Strategic Partnerships Manager, for COVID Survivors for Change.  

“I’m honored to partner with Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long, the Delaware Division of Public Health, and the Yellow Heart Memorial as we remember those who still suffer from the long-term impacts of COVID and those who have died. It’s critical for us to rebuild our community through empathy and work to ensure that the deaths of our loved ones were not in vain.”  

Lt. Governor Hall-Long and her community partners also will unveil a tree provided by the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control at the Division of Public Health’s Jesse Cooper Building in Dover to remember and honor the victims of the COVID-19 pandemic, and to provide a place of peace for public health and health care workers to heal. A memorial website is also being developed.  

Anyone who wishes to have their loved one remembered, recognize a COVID-19 survivor, or lift up an individual for their service by having their name included on a yellow heart can do so in advance at de.gov/covidmemorial or in person prior to the start of the ceremony. 


DelDOT Reminds Motorists to Slow Down & Pay Attention During National Work Zone Awareness Week

From left to right: Jana Tidwell from AAA Mid-Atlantic, Delaware State Police Sergeant Heather Pepper, Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long, Daria Benson and family (DelDOT), Tom Neubauer (Kiewit), Jason Sacco (DelDOT), Sarah Powell and family (DelDOT), Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski at NWZAW event in Wilmington

The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) encourages everyone to take part in National Work Zone Awareness Week (NWZAW), April 11, 2022, through April 15, 2022, and to wear orange on Go Orange Day, April 13 as a reminder to use always caution and drive carefully in and around work zones.

On Monday, Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski, Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long, representatives from AAA Mid-Atlantic, the Delaware State Police, and Kiewit gathered in Wilmington adjacent to the I-95 Restore the Corridor work zone to remind motorists the importance of slowing down and paying attention when traveling through work zones. The theme of this year’s campaign: Drive Like Your Family Works Here. If we all work together, we can achieve zero deaths on our roads and in our work zones.

“Keeping our work zones safe is a collective effort,” said Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long. “Together by minimizing distractions, reducing our speed, and obeying posted signs while driving through work zones we can save lives. Keeping our roads, highways, and bridges safe should be all our DelDOT crews are focused on. They should not have to worry about whether or not they’ll make it home for dinner.”

“On any given day, we have hundreds of DelDOT employees and contractors working on our roadways making improvements to keep you safe. We also have our toll collectors working in the middle of our busiest roadways serving our customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “This year’s theme is Drive Like Your Family Works Here. So please when you see a construction sign, our employees working along the roadway or going through our toll booths, slow down and Drive Like Your Family Works Here because we don’t ever want to lose a member of our DelDOT Family.”

April 13, 2022 starting at 10:00 am, Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski and representatives from the Delaware Office of Highway Safety and Mumford & Miller Construction will gather for another NWZAW event at American Legion #28 at 31768 Legion Road in Millsboro, Delaware.

Honor the families who have lost loved ones in work zone crashes on Go Orange Day Wednesday, April 13, 2022, and when passing through the Newark, Biddles, and Dover Toll Plazas or driving over the Indian River Inlet Bridge (Charles Cullen Bridge) remember the lights shine orange during April as a reminder of the role we all play in work zone safety.

NWZAW is held in April each year at the traditional start of the construction season when the number of works on our nation’s roadways increases. NWZAW began in 1999 when the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA), and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) signed a Memorandum of Agreement pledging to increase public awareness of work zone safety issues through a national media campaign. Since then, awareness has continued to grow, with state agencies and other organizations sponsoring high-visibility education and outreach initiatives.

Discover other actions DelDOT is taking to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries on Delaware’s roadways with the Delaware Strategic Highway Safety Plan. Click here to access this multi-agency approach that utilizes education, enforcement, engineering, and emergency medical service strategies, or visit DelDOT.gov.


Governor Carney Announces Five-Year Effort to Improve Water and Wastewater Systems, Protects Residents

NEWARK, Del. – Governor John Carney announced Wednesday that state agencies will begin accepting applications to loan or grant money for drinking water and wastewater system improvements around the state, with capacity for historic levels of investment in water infrastructure from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the state Clean Water Trust, created in 2021.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law — championed by U.S. Senator Tom Carper, U.S. Senator Chris Coons, and U.S. Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester and signed by President Biden in November 2021 — is a once-in-a-generation commitment to improving roads, bridges, transit, water and wastewater systems, broadband, energy and other infrastructure areas.

Cities, towns, counties, water companies and communities are eligible to apply for the increased and more flexible funding coming from the federal government to the existing Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) administered by the state Division of Public Health and the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF, which focuses on wastewater and stormwater projects) administered by the state Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. As directed by Congress, these existing processes will manage requests and inquiries related to this funding. The joint DWSRF/CWSRF workshop to begin the 2022 application process takes place Thursday, March 24 at 10 a.m. and pre-registration is open.

On Wednesday, Governor Carney toured a City of Newark water facility that used funding from the state Drinking Water State Revolving Fund to construct a 250,000-gallon storage tank, install a contaminant removal system, and complete plant building upgrades that will allow for additional treatment if needed in the future.

Click here to view photos from the tour.

“Delawareans deserve clean water. It’s as simple as that,” said Governor Carney. “Access to clean and safe water should be a promise we make to our residents, and we need to protect this resource for future generations. The combination of the Clean Water Trust – led by Representative Longhurst and Senator Townsend – and the new federal funding led by Senators Carper, Coons and Congresswoman Blunt Rochester, will help us deliver on the promise of clean water for all Delawareans.”

With Delaware’s $315 million for clean water and drinking water from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, more money will be available for the next five years for the types of water and wastewater projects traditionally financed by the funds, and with dedicated funding for disadvantaged communities, to address emerging contaminants such as PFAS, and to find and replace remove lead water lines or water line components. Delaware water systems are not known to have many lead water lines, but the funding can be used for a federally required inventory of systems for any lead lines and components that must be completed by October 2024, as well as for any needed replacements.

In the 2022 round of annual loans and grants, Delaware communities will have access to:

  • $29 million for the general Drinking Water fund projects, such as source water protection, treatment, storage, distribution, cybersecurity and sustainable energy projects, which is almost three times as much as usual
  • $16.5 million for the general Clean Water fund projects, such as wastewater treatment plant upgrades, septic elimination projects, and sewer interceptor rehabilitations, which is about twice as much as usual
  • $28 million specifically for lead service drinking water line identification and, if needed, replacement, which is new dedicated funding
  • $8 million for projects to address PFAS or other emerging contaminants in drinking water or wastewater systems, which is also new dedicated funding

Of the traditional project lines and the lead pipe replacement lines, 49 percent of the fund must be provided as forgivable loans or grants to communities that qualify as disadvantaged. The definition of disadvantaged varies by programs but can be updated by the state programs this year to expand the potential access. The emerging contaminant funds also have requirements for spending in disadvantaged communities.

“Clean water is critical to everything we do – from our health to our environment and to our economy – access to safe and clean water is a basic necessity,” said Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long, Ph.D., R.N. “Thanks to President Biden and our Congressional Delegation, these critical infrastructure funds along with the Clean Water Trust Fund will help ensure clean water for all Delaware communities, particularly the underserved. Protecting our water quality is the foundation of a stronger and healthier Delaware.”

“Planning for the future is a key strategy in responding to emerging contaminants,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “DPH is thankful and pleased to support Newark and other municipalities and communities in providing clean water to residents. The infrastructure investments being made now, and that will be possible with the funds coming to Delaware, will substantially expand DPH’s reach to ensure all Delawareans have access to safe drinking water.”

“With this historic investment, we will be able to advance our goal of clean water for all Delawareans,” said Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “Even so, addressing the water challenges of our state will not happen overnight. We have a lot of work to do – work we’ll do together – to support water quality improvement projects in communities across Delaware, particularly our overburdened and underserved communities.”

The federal funding will work in conjunction with the state’s Clean Water Trust, created in 2021 to plan and deploy water investments from multiple funding sources. Because of the five-year increase in infrastructure funding from the federal government, the state water loan programs are urging potential applicants to consider the next several years of improvements, and to potentially apply for planning grants this year that could turn into infrastructure projects that need to be funded in future years.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s provisions include the Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act that Senator Carper authored in the Environment and Public Works Committee in the U.S. Senate. Specifically, the law will provide states with increased State Revolving Loan funding and program flexibilities that allow them to invest in community water projects to address aging infrastructure and improve water quality.

“Up and down the state and across the country, we’ve seen the dire consequences when our water infrastructure fails. That’s why we made unprecedented investments in our nation’s water infrastructure through the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” said Senator Carper. “I am proud that our committee’s work led to this announcement today and that we are now one step closer to ensuring that all Delawareans – and all Americans — have clean and safe drinking water and wastewater.”

“Access to clean drinking water is a fundamental human right,” said Senator Coons. “The bipartisan infrastructure framework that President Biden signed into law is a blue-collar blueprint for our country to deliver historic investments, including upgrades to our water systems so that every Delawarean can enjoy that right. Thanks to Governor Carney and my colleagues in the congressional delegation, and we’re one step closer to all Delawareans having access to the clean drinking water they deserve.”

“Access to clean, safe, and reliable drinking water has been a mounting crisis in our country including in communities right here in Delaware, and ensuring access is critically important for improving not only Delawareans’ quality of life but our overall public health,” said Congresswoman Blunt Rochester. “That’s why I was proud to vote for President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that brings the largest investment in drinking water and wastewater in American history, and I commend Governor Carney for utilizing this funding, compiled with the Clean Water Trust, to ensure Delawareans have access to clean water across the state.”

For more information on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, visit: de.gov/infrastructure

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