Wilmington – “One things certain. Delaware’s economy is in transition. I believe we can use this transition as an opportunity for economic growth,” said Congressman Carney. “The jobs my neighbors had at the steel mill or the GM plant when I was growing up in Claymont are no longer there. That’s why we need to provide Delawareans with well-paying middle class jobs of the future by strengthening our current economic base in manufacturing and financial services. We need to turn these old industrial sites into jobs for Delaware’s blue collar workforce.
“We also need to position the state for success in an innovation, start-up economy. And we need to continue fostering a workforce that’s second to none in order to compete for jobs in this new economy. We need to cut red tape that limits economic growth by implementing a streamlined and modernized process so that businesses that want to grow in Delaware, can.
“Lastly, we can’t forget Delaware’s other crucial industries. Our agriculture economy accounts for $8 billion in economic activity each year. We need to support our farmers and look for new opportunities to expand agriculture in Delaware.”
The Congressman’s economic development platform consists of five pillars:
- Creating new “old” jobs
- Revitalize old abandoned industrial sites
- Expand the Port of Wilmington
- Support traditional small businesses, especially women- and minority-owned businesses
- Building Delaware’s innovation economy
- Restructure the Delaware Economic Development Office to be more entrepreneurial and proactive
- Direct DEDO to create a new, targeted marketing strategy that builds on Delaware’s economic strengths and highlights opportunities for entrepreneur investment and job creation.
- Develop stronger partnerships between government, private businesses, and Delaware’s chambers of commerce
- Strengthen the entrepreneurial environment for startup companies
- Create and implement a science and technology plan for the state
- Developing a strategic plan with private businesses to attract more venture capital
- Embrace and expand the availability of open data
- Create the First State Innovation Challenge
- Improve broadband access in rural parts of the state
III. Strengthening Delaware’s world-class workforce
- Create a responsive workforce development program
- Expand career pathways programs
- Develop program partnerships with the Building and Construction Trades, union locals, and Delaware contractors to give veterans a head-start on construction and other skill-related careers
- Incentivize re-hiring and on-the-job training through adjustments to unemployment insurance
- Cutting red tape that stifles economic growth
- Expedite permitting process via the Council for Fast Track Job Creation: I would designate one state entity where companies seeking to create good-paying, middle class jobs could secure all necessary permits and other requirements under a fast-track system
- Streamline Delaware’s regulations to create a clear, predictable environment for business
- Modernize antiquated administrative law framework
- Require agencies to review and harmonize regulations to support our business community and the creation of good-paying middle class jobs
- Growing Delaware’s agriculture economy
- Improve nutrient management regulations: As Governor, I will work to harmonize our state’s efforts to protect the environment with the need to support our long tradition of being an agricultural engine for the country
- Reduce permitting barriers to ensure that regulations and permitting don’t delay families from supporting their small businesses.
- Preserve farmland
- Promote agribusiness through improved marketing assistance for farmers and the promotion of agribusiness through trade with our North American and South American neighbors.
Prior to the policy platform release, the Congressman toured many businesses to discuss the challenges and opportunities for businesses in Delaware. Congressman Carney’s proposal was developed discussing Delaware’s economy with entrepreneurs, small business owners, business leaders, representatives of Delaware labor trades, community officials, farmers, and educators. To see the full economic development platform text, click here.
Congressman John Carney is the Democratic candidate for governor. This is the second major policy platform release from his gubernatorial campaign. Congressman Carney announced his intention to run for governor in September 2015, and has been actively campaigning throughout Delaware by holding listening sessions and community events to hear directly from voters. The next community event will be on Thursday, October 20, 2016, at Brookside Park Community Center in Newark from 6-8pm.
Image Credits: John Carney