Posted: Jan. 8, 2003
CARNEY: TWO-YEAR REPORT
WILMINGTON -- Governor Ruth
Ann Minner and Lieutenant Governor John C. Carney, Jr. said
Wednesday the accomplishments of their administration include
beginning a serious battle against high cancer rates, improving test
scores in schools and creating 2,200 jobs.
include preventing and preparing for terrorism, curbing urban
sprawl, cracking down on industrial pollution, greatly improving
e-government and minimizing the effects on state government services
during tough economic times.
“These are the areas where
the people of Delaware expected us to make a difference – and we
have,” Gov. Minner said.
“It hasn't always been easy,
but Gov. Minner has kept the focus of her administration on
improving things for Delawareans,” Lt. Gov. Carney said. “This
collection of accomplishments is evidence of an agenda that has put
the people of Delaware first. Whether it is addressing people's
health by fighting cancer and diabetes, improving education,
pursuing and creating jobs or getting our state agencies more
prepared than ever in a new, more dangerous world, the focus has
remained where it should – on the residents of Delaware.”
Gov. Minner and Lt. Gov.
Carney reported on the progress made on each of the five goals they
set for their administration nearly two years ago. They are:
Schools that set high standards for
college, work and life;
A Livable Delaware that strengthens
communities and preserves quality of life;
Health, safety and self-sufficiency
for every Delaware family;
Economic development that nurtures and
maintains high-quality jobs; and,
A state government that is
In schools, Gov. Minner and
Lt. Gov. Carney said, test scores have increased in reading and math
in all the critical grades under the state’s accountability system.
Lt. Gov. Carney created the Models of Excellence in Education to
identify those practices that improve student achievement and hold
them up as models for other schools to follow.
“We ask a lot of our
teachers and schools,” Lt. Gov. Carney said. “This is one of the
ways we can give them the tools to meet the challenges they face and
the expectations that are placed on them.”
The administration has
protected teachers from frivolous lawsuits and placed Reading
Resource Teachers in half of the public elementary schools.
“We’ve heard stories of
children jumping two or three grade levels in reading with the help
of the reading teachers,” Gov. Minner said. “Reading teachers are
one of the things I am most proud of because they are truly
affecting the lives of our children.”
In making Delaware more
livable, the administration has required cities and counties to more
adequately plan for growth, protected more than 1,800 acres of land
as open space in the last two years, added 420 acres to our state
parks and planted more than 1.6 million trees.
The concerns of Delawareans
about industry have been addressed with the Environmental
Right-To-Know Act and the Aboveground Storage Tank Act. Gov. Minner
also mentioned an agreement reached with Motiva for the largest
reduction in air emissions by any industry in Delaware history.
In health, safety and
self-sufficiency, the Emergency Health Powers Act made Delaware
better prepared to deal with a biological or chemical attack, and
the Minner-Carney administration has trained 1,200 state workers to
respond to terrorism.
“We are attacking one of
Delawareans’ gravest concerns – the state’s high cancer rates – with
a blueprint by the cancer task force and new laws like the Clean
Indoor Air Act,” Gov. Minner said. “I committed to put some of the
state’s few resources this year into fighting cancer, even though we
may not see the results in the next two years or even the next six
years. But I know we are on the right path and that we are focused
on the long term – and that, to me, is what good government should
Lt. Gov. Carney has made
health and safety one of his major issues, with the Lt. Governor’s
Challenge fitness program, a diabetes education program and more
than 20,000 gun cable locks distributed through Project HomeSafe.
“In addressing the high
rates of diabetes and cancer in Delaware, it’s important that people
know there are things they can do to reduce the risk of chronic
diseases,” said Lt. Gov. Carney. “The Challenge is about getting
Delawareans to introduce some physical activity in their daily
lives, whether it’s walking, gardening, biking or something else.
Project HomeSafe has allowed us to address the safety of our
children in another way, by giving out free cable gun locks to
Delaware residents. Hopefully, that will make our homes a little
In economic development, new
business locations or expansions of existing businesses have
resulted in more than 2,200 jobs created over the next few years.
The Strategic Economic Council, created in January 2001, has given
us a plan for growing our economy. The “It’s Good Being First” brand
image was released and is being used by more than 50 businesses as
well as in an aggressive promotion by the state.
In the area of managing
government, Gov. Minner and Lt. Gov. Carney said Delaware is one of
the only states in the last two years that has not raised taxes,
drastically slashed services, laid off employees or raided our
“The reason we have done so
well relative to other states is the innovative ways we have cut
costs and done more with less,” Gov. Minner said. “We are saving
money on prescription drugs, changing the way we purchase supplies
and even changing the way we purchase health insurance.”
The Governor and Lieutenant
Governor also talked about their accomplishments in the realm of
e-government, with a new state web portal that makes finding state
government information easier and quicker and the addition of more
than 30 brand new web sites, from the Division of Motor Vehicles to
Professional Regulation. About 127,000 state tax returns were filed
online last year, as well.
“In some ways, the last two
years have seemed very long indeed, but in some ways they seem to
have blinked by in an instant,” Gov. Minner said. “I am very proud
of what we have done so far, and very eager to see what we can do
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