Category Archives: Weekly Message

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 12/18/2016

Improving Public Safety by Breaking the Cycle of Recidivism By: Delaware Commissioner of Corrections, Rob Coupe Hello, I’m Rob Coupe, Commissioner for the Delaware Department of Correction. At the Department of Correction, we’re focused on keeping the public safe by providing effective supervision to individuals whose behavior has brought them into contact with our criminal justice system. And we’re taking new steps to give these individuals a better chance of turning the page on their past and building new, productive, and law abiding lives. It’s a fact that more than 95% of inmates will be released from incarceration and return to the community. Historically, after release many of these individuals commit new crimes and return to prison. Many factors can influence criminal behavior, and even those who are determined to chart a new course must overcome significant barriers Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 12/9/2016

Expanding Pathways to Career Success for Delaware Students By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell Delawareans and all Americans face a changing global economy, one where employers can increasingly move anywhere in the world to find talent and, because of technology, they produce more with fewer employees. The most effective thing that our state can do to increase opportunity and prosperity is to ensure everyone has the skills to compete for good jobs. That requires bringing together our K-12 schools, our colleges and universities, and our business community to create a pipeline for success. It’s the reason I was so excited about our announcement at A.I. du Pont High School this past week, when we awarded nearly half a million dollars in grants to 16 high schools to expand our Pathways to Prosperity initiative. The program provides hands-on training to students in growing fields like manufacturing, Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 12/02/2016

Reducing Home Utility Expenses While Protecting the Environment By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell As temperatures drop, some Delawareans worry about utility bills that spike this time every year and their ability to keep their families warm during the winter season. Many households spend a large portion of their monthly income to heat poorly insulated homes, while drafty doors and windows allow heat to escape. That’s where Delaware’s Weatherization Assistance Program steps in to insulate and weather-proof homes at no cost to reduce the financial burden for low-income households, especially families with children, seniors, and individuals with disabilities. The Weatherization Assistance Program benefits Delawareans in several ways. First, home weatherization creates safer and healthier homes. While determining the weatherization that’s needed in each home, trained and certified Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 11/25/2016

Giving Thanks Through Giving Back By: Delaware Governor,Jack Markell The first Thanksgiving, which took place nearly 400 years ago, launched a tradition of coming together to give thanks, break bread, and deepen connections between neighbors. I hope that on this Thanksgiving weekend you have the opportunity to do the same. While I have always appreciated this opportunity to gather with family and friends and focus on all we have to be thankful for, as Governor, I’ve also had the privilege to better recognize the Delawareans who quietly work every day to make our communities stronger, with little fanfare. They are public employees, including service providers, public safety workers, educators, and many more, and all the support staff who make the impact of their collective work possible. They are the men and women in uniform who are deployed abroad in service to our state and country, Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 11/11/2016: Ending Veteran Homelessness in Delaware

Ending Veteran Homelessness in Delaware By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell In 2015, we committed to ending and preventing homelessness among veterans in Delaware. I said something then that remains true today: Even one homeless veteran is one too many. That’s why this week I was thrilled to announce that – after more than a year’s work with our local, state and federal partners – we have effectively ended veteran homelessness in our state. We now have the systems in place to ensure that homelessness is prevented whenever possible; that it is rare, brief and does not reoccur. Many groups deserve our thanks for their work to ensure that all veterans in Delaware have a safe, quality place to call home. The Delaware State Housing Authority led the statewide initiative with support from the U.S. Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Veterans Affairs, but it would not have Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message: 11/4/2016

Improving Quality of Life with New Trails and Pathways​ By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell This week we marked the beginning of construction on the final link of the New Castle Industrial Track Trail, a critical segment of the 3,000-mile East Coast Greenway. When complete, it will join with the Wilmington riverfront to provide a walking and bicycling connection between downtown Wilmington and Old New Castle. It will create commuting options for Delawareans who live and work downtown and expand recreational opportunities for area residents and visitors. This groundbreaking marks another step in the great progress we have seen in making our state more walkable and bikeable. We’ve added 50 miles of new pathways and trails, and raised our ranking among the most bike-friendly states from 31st to third. When we first announced the Delaware Trails and Pathways initiative I could Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 10/28/2016

Honoring Teachers for Their Role in Shaping our Children’s Future By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell We know that a major factor in student achievement is an excellent teacher, and we can’t overstate the important role our educators play in shaping our children’s future. That’s why we’re supporting them in more ways through professional learning communities in schools, new teacher leadership roles, and compensation for professional development and national certification. Delaware has many outstanding educators, and this week I was honored to announce that our 2017 Delaware Teacher of the Year is Wendy Turner, a second grade teacher at Mount Pleasant Elementary in the Brandywine School District. Wendy was one of twenty nominees from school districts and the charter school network, and together these exceptional men and women represent thousands of dedicated and passionate Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 10/21/2016

Providing New Access to Information that Impacts the Lives of Delaware Families By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell To be effective, government must be transparent. That’s why within the first 6 months of my administration, we launched the Delaware Checkbook website which gave unprecedented access to state spending information. We also enacted the most comprehensive updates ever to Delaware’s Freedom of Information Act, making it easier for the public to get access to government documents. And we expanded disclosure of campaign donations because the public has a right to know which groups support a candidate for public office. Earlier this year, we took another important step when I signed Executive Order 57, which established an Open Data Council, and laid the groundwork for an open data portal. As we celebrate this week's launch of that portal, we know it will only be effective Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 10/14/2016

Expanding Successful Downtown Development Program By: Delaware Governor, Jack A. Markell Vibrant downtowns are crucial drivers of economic growth and they are central to our efforts to strengthen the quality of life. More than ever, Delawareans want to live and work in our urban cores that are close to transportation networks and entertainment and recreation opportunities, and that’s why we are investing in our downtowns through the Downtown Development District program. Since last year, when we launched the program in Wilmington, Dover and Seaford, $14 million in grants through the Delaware State Housing Authority has leveraged more than $290 million in private investment. That’s helping Wilmington small businesses like Sterling Grille perform needed renovations, and funding residential construction in downtown Dover. Just this week, in Seaford, I observed progress at the Residences Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 10/7/2016

Sustaining Delaware’s Strong Economy Through Employment Growth By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell Delaware’s economy today is strong, with the lowest unemployment rate in a decade and job growth that leads the region. But that doesn’t happen by accident. Businesses today can choose to locate just about anywhere, and the Markell Administration works tirelessly to attract and retain employers — from the largest corporations that hire thousands of Delawareans, to our small businesses who collectively employ more people than any other sector, to entrepreneurs and start-ups with the next great idea. The Delaware Economic Development Office is hard at work building relationships with job creators and sharing with them that we offer a welcoming business climate, highly-skilled workforce, and high quality of life. Our efforts are paying off. Businesses such as Techmer Engineered Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 9/30/2016

Advancing Employment Opportunities for Individuals of All Abilities By:Delaware Governor, Jack Markell Last week, Governor Markell and I joined young people with disabilities, their parents and advocates as we celebrated the success of Pathways to Employment. Pathways supports young people age 14 to 25 as they make their transition from school to the world of work. Inspired by Governor Markell’s commitment to advancing employment opportunities for people of all abilities, the Department of Health and Social Services started Pathways about a year ago as the first program of its kind in the country. With financial support from our Medicaid program, we’re helping reduce the barriers to employment through such services as assistive technology, career exploration and personal care. We’re grateful for the strong support we’ve received from the Delaware Department of Labor’s Division Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 9/23/2016

Empowering Everybody to Prepare for Natural Disasters and Other Emergencies By: Delaware Governor, Jack A. Markell Severe weather, natural disasters, and public health emergencies can threaten the safety of our people, homes, and communities. As Governor, I’ve observed how fortunate we are to have so many exceptional public servants hard at work keeping us safe during rain, wind, and snow events, as well as other emergencies. They’re law enforcement and other first responders, emergency management staff, transportation workers, public health workers, and other social service providers across Delaware, who are well-prepared to serve us during times of need. As we recognize National Preparedness Month, we thank them for their service. But in addition to supporting them, we all must recommit to taking responsibility for knowing what to expect and being prepared for emergency situations. Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 9/16/16

Opening Pathways to Success by Expanding Opportunities for All to Earn a High School Diploma By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell In our rapidly changing economy, there has never been a better time to enter the workforce with the right skills, but there’s never been a more challenging time to be without the key skills or the right education. Ensuring Delawareans have access to good jobs starts with giving them the best chance to earn a high school diploma. It provides entry into today’s job market and opens pathways to additional education and training, and it’s why we should be proud that, with the hard work of teachers focused on identifying and helping students who fall behind, Delaware has set new graduation records and recently recorded the fastest growing graduation rate in the country. But we can’t just focus on teenagers. Today, more than 75,000 Delaware adults don’t Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 9/9/2016

Saving Lives by Reducing Distracted Driving By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell Modern technology is amazing and there’s almost no limit to what people can do with their phones these days, but when phone use is combined with driving, the results can be deadly. Far too many drivers use handheld electronic devices behind the wheel, and that creates distractions that not only threaten their own lives, but also those in other vehicles and the pedestrians and bicyclists who share our roadways. Each year Delaware police issue more than 6,000 citations to distracted drivers caught using handheld phones. And more than 150 vehicle accidents every year involve distractions from phone use – accidents that could have been prevented with better awareness of the roadway and better judgement by drivers. I recently joined my friends at AAA, law enforcement officials, students, and even special Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 9/1/2016

Making Investments that Support Student Achievement and Career Success By; Delaware Governor, Jack Markell This week, students across our state are returning to the classroom and thanks to the hard work of teachers and administrators, our schools are setting them on a path toward rewarding careers and success in life through higher standards and innovative instruction that meet the skills needed in today’s high-tech economy. That starts with our youngest learners. More support for training, equipment, and resources in high quality pre-school programs are preparing our youngest learners to excel in school. We’re in the fifth year of our world language immersion program where nearly 3,000 kids – including 10% of our Kindergarten students – are taking half of their classes in Chinese or Spanish to become proficient by fourth grade. That program is giving kids a head-start for Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 8/19/2018

Conserving Natural Resources to Build Our Economy By: Delaware Governor Jack A. Markell Weekly Message Attention to our natural resources isn’t just about environmental protection – we must recognize and take advantage of how they contribute to our economy and the quality of life. Delaware’s beaches, waterways, campgrounds, trails, award-winning state parks and wildlife areas form the backbone of Delaware’s conservation economy. That’s especially evident this time of the year as residents and visitors enjoy Delaware’s great outdoors by kayaking, camping, fishing, bicycling, and playing in the surf and sand.  Our state parks are at the center of our conversation economy, and together they attract more than 6 million visitors annually.  Each year nearly 350,000 people fish, hunt and observe wildlife, and 60,000 boats are registered here.  Through these and more, two out Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 8/12/2016

Creating Opportunities for Delaware Employers to Export and Create Jobs By: Delaware Governor, Jack Markell Delaware entrepreneurs have always been at the forefront of innovation and quality. They create products and services that people need and improve the quality of life for consumers across the country and beyond. Today, the ability to tap into the global marketplace is a key driver of business and employment growth. Exports now support more than 10 million American jobs, and to thrive, Delaware employers must have access to these expanding markets. We recognize that Delaware’s start-ups and small businesses offer high-quality products and services that are in demand worldwide, but may not have the resources to make that happen on their own. Different languages, economic systems and political cultures all present barriers. We’re helping to meet that need through our Global Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 8/5/2016

Honoring Delaware’s Olympians—Governor Delaware Governor, Jack A. Markell Over the next few weeks the world’s attention will turn to Brazil as 11,000 athletes from more than 200 countries compete in the Summer Olympic Games. Among those representing our nation are three Delaware Olympians: Caitlin Van Sickle, a Tower Hill graduate and Katelyn Falgowski, a St. Mark’s graduate – both on the Field Hockey team, and Elena Delle Donne, the WNBA star from Ursuline and UD. And we recognize Marquis Dendy, a Middletown High School graduate who was named to the Olympic Track and Field Team, but is unable to compete because of a recent athletic injury. We can take great pride in these outstanding Delawareans who have represented our state so well with their talent, hard work, and perseverance. We know it takes more than natural ability to succeed at sport’s highest level. It takes Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 7/29/2016

Celebrating the Delaware State Fair By: Delaware Governor Jack A. Markell This week, for the final time as Governor I had the opportunity to attend our Delaware State Fair which for nearly a century has celebrated our vibrant agriculture community. It’s our state’s largest industry and, anchored by our 2,400 family farms, it generates tens of thousands of jobs and contributes 8 billion dollars to our economy. Our farmers lead the nation in the value of products produced per acre and their impact continues to grow. That success is on full display at the State Fair through thousands of exhibits, demonstrations, student agricultural projects and much more. They show that Delawareans of all ages are developing products, growing crops, and raising poultry and livestock that’s strengthening our food supply and making our lives better. At this year’s Fair I visited with the next Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 7/22/2016

Preparing All of Our Students for Success in College and Life By: Delaware Governor Jack A. Markell All Delaware students deserve the chance to make the most of their talents in an economy that requires a higher level of skill than ever before. Thanks to the hard work of many educators and administrators, we are getting closer to that goal, from vast improvement in access to high quality early childhood programs, to record high school graduation rates. And after just two years, our Pathways to Prosperity program is giving thousands of students the opportunity to earn college credit and workplace experience in high-demand industries like IT, engineering, and health care. That’s all important progress, but we must also remain focused on an obstacle preventing young people nationwide from reaching their potential. We have too many students who work hard to meet college entry requirements, Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 7/8/2016

Ensuring Our Agriculture Industry Thrives By: Delaware Governor Jack Markell From poultry and livestock, to fruits and vegetables, to soybeans and other crops, Delaware’s agricultural community is as vibrant as ever. It’s our largest industry, injecting more than $8 billion into our economy annually, and our farmers lead the nation in the value of their products per acre. Our farmers’ markets surpassed $3 million in sales last year, every Delaware public school district buys directly from local farmers, and our family farmers are finding new markets by selling to local supermarkets who recognize the value in selling their products. The nutritional benefits of locally grown products are incredible; eating local reduces the environmental impact from shipping produce across the country and promotes a safer food supply; and starting Monday, we’ll celebrate Buy Local week, which Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 7/1/2016

Investing in Delaware’s Future Prosperity—Governor Jack A. Markell Weekly Message In my State of the State address, I talked about government’s obligation to do more than maintain the status quo. We must expect more to increase Delawareans’ opportunities to make the most of their talents. Our approach in recent years has helped achieve the fastest job growth in the region, while raising the quality of life for all Delawareans. The budget I signed this past week, along with other steps taken in the legislature’s just-completed session, builds on this progress. We’ve made our tax code more sensible for businesses large and small, supported research and innovation, and continued to focus on economic development in our downtowns. Delaware will also be a more attractive place for workers and businesses because of record investments in our trails and pathways, libraries, and the Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 7/24/2016

Expanding Access to High-Quality Early Learning Programs : Delaware Governor Jack A. Markell Weekly Message The first few years of a child’s life are crucial to his or her success. That’s why one of our top goals has been giving all Delaware families access to high-quality early learning programs and why I made early childhood funding one of my top budget priorities this year. It supports social and emotional development, helps even the playing field for children across socio-economic levels, and puts all kids on the path to meeting their full potential. The efforts of state leaders, advocates, and, most importantly, teachers and other staff are paying off. Today, more than 70 percent of low-income children are enrolled in our highest quality pre-schools, up from 5 percent in 2011. More than 120 programs now receive the highest rating of 5 Stars, up from just 24 in 2012. And Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 6/17/2016

Ensuring the Rights and Safety of All Delawareans and Americans By: Delaware Governor, Governor Jack A. Markell Last Sunday, Delawareans and Americans across the country awoke to the horrifying and tragic news of the worst mass shooting in the nation’s history – a crime that the President appropriately called “an act of terror and an act of hate.” Victims were largely from the LGBT community.  To Delaware’s LGBT community, we stand with you.  To Camp Rehoboth and Haven at University of Delaware, thank you for standing strong and providing comfort.  We will remain vigilant to ensure protections against discrimination remain strong and undeniable. To Delaware’s Muslim community: thank you for speaking out against the perpetrator of this murder and for making it clear that your community stands strong against this perversion of your religion.  We will not impose religious Read more

DE Governor’s Weekly Message 6/10/2016

Making the Most of the Talents of All People By: Governor Jack A. Markell Our state is at its best when we make the most of the talents of all of our people. Every member of our community deserves a chance to be productive, to be told they and their work matter, and to contribute to the greater good by putting their time and talent to use. I'm pleased that in Delaware we’ve made real progress in supporting people with different types of abilities through programs like Project Search. This career development program for people is sponsored by Christiana Care, with strong support from the State’s Department of Labor, Red Clay School District, and non-profit service providers who provide career coaching and job search assistance—Bayhealth also participates. This past week I visited with this year’s inspiring class of Project Search graduates, including Chris Coulston. Chris Read more