Delaware Senate Republican Caucus Issues Statement Regarding New Mandates


On Wednesday, January 12, 2022, The Delaware State Senate Republican Caucus issued the following statement regarding Governor Carney's face-covering mandate and his announced intentions to extend the face-covering requirement for K-12 institutions and child care facilities.

Governor Carney Signs Universal Indoor Mask Mandate


Governor John Carney on Monday signed a revision to the State of Emergency declaration, requiring Delawareans to wear masks in indoor public settings, including convenience stores, grocery stores, gyms, restaurants, bars, hair salons, malls, and casinos.

General Assembly committee meetings to stay virtual


Delaware House and Senate leaders announced Friday that all legislative committees will meet virtually throughout the month of January when the General Assembly returns to session Tuesday, Jan. 11.

Governor Carney to Issue State of Emergency to Fight COVID-19 Winter Surge


Governor John Carney on Thursday announced a new State of Emergency declaration - effective Monday, January 3, 2022 - to combat the winter surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. The new SOE declaration, which will be formally issued on Monday, will: • Allow the State additional flexibility to respond to the winter surge of COVID-19. • Enable members of the Delaware National Guard to work as certified nursing assistants (CNAs) in skilled nursing facilities to care for patients currently in Delaware hospitals.

Senate Republicans Respond to New State of Emergency Announcement


The Senate Republican Caucus recognizes the challenges facing our hospitals' staff and first responders throughout the state. To address these issues, Governor Carney today announced he will be issuing a state of emergency effective this coming Monday, January 3, 2022. We have no doubt that the Delaware National Guard will provide much needed assistance to combat COVID-19 within our hospitals. We thank those in service for continuing to step up to the plate and providing aid where needed. We do, however, urge Governor Carney to immediately rescind the order once the situation in our hospitals improve. We oppose any possible implementation of mandates like what we saw nearly two years ago, such as a statewide face-covering order and capacity limits in businesses and restaurants. Today's announcement reinforces the need for legislation to allow eligible National Guard members to quickly be credentialed as Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) and, thus, alleviating the requirement for a state of emergency like what will go in place on Monday. This, and other measures such as House Bill 49, which would require the General Assembly to approve the renewal of a state of emergency beyond the initial 30 days, will be of high priority when the Legislature reconvenes on January 11, 2022.

DelDOT announces completion of Route 141 road projects


The Delaware Department of Transportation has announced that it has completed its improvements to Route 141 between Newport and New Castle.

State to perform quarterly audits of COVID relief, infrastructure funds


Delaware has set aside more than $3 million to audit agencies and nonprofit organizations that receive funding from federal infrastructure and COVID relief bills. The state will perform quarterly reviews of agencies and organizations receiving funds to monitor the efficacy of investments and ensure compliance.

No immediate plans to bring back mask mandate, Carney says


Gov. John Carney has no immediate plans to reinstitute mask or social distancing mandates. Instead, the state will continue to rely on voluntary compliance, he said during a COVID-19 briefing Tuesday.

Division of Small Business awards EDGE Grants to 15 Delaware companies


The Delaware Division of Small Business recognized 15 small businesses Thursday as winners of the fourth round of Encouraging Development, Growth and Expansion (EDGE) Grants. Awardees in the latest round of the competition include a company working to alleviate phantom limb pain for amputees, a maker of easy-to-use diagnostic tests for aquaculture, an artisanal popsicle store and a supplier of home brewing materials.

DNREC Encourages Delawareans to Recycle Christmas Trees


The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control encourages Delawareans to regift their real Christmas trees to the environment by recycling them at one of the many yard waste recycling facilities located throughout the state. Tree mulch is great for helping conserve and enhance First State soil.

DelDOT Celebrates Completion of Phase 8 of Georgetown to Lewes Trail


It is official. Phase 8 of the Georgetown to Lewes Trail is complete. The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) marked the completion of this low-stress bicycle connection from downtown Georgetown to Sussex Academy and all points in between with a ribbon cutting on Friday, November 19, 2021 with special guests Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski, State Senator Brian Pettyjohn, State Representative Ruth Briggs King, Mayor of Georgetown Bill West and local officials.

DNREC’s Low-Digit Surf Fishing Tag Auction Starts Nov. 22


The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will auction low-digit surf fishing plates starting Monday, Nov. 22, at 9 a.m., at Between Nov. 22 and Dec. 9, bidders will have the option to bid on 15 tags including tags 26, 54, 132, 211, 301, 454 and on nine "choice" categories, ranging from tags 51 to 9999. The highest bidder in each choice category can choose a number, if not already sold, within that category. The minimum bid for a low-digit surf fishing plate is $250. By state law, surf-fishing tags numbered 1 through 200 are limited to vehicles registered in Delaware.

State to invest $2 million in farmers, local food supply chain


Delaware will spend $2 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds to establish a seed fund aimed at stabilizing and strengthening small and mid-sized farmers and local food supply chain operations. The First State Integrated Food System Program, announced Thursday by Gov. John Carney, will be paid for using funds the state received from the American Rescue Plan Act.

Indian Mission School Historical Marker Dedicated


The Delaware Public Archives was proud to join with Nanticoke Indian Tribe Chief Natosha Norwood Carmine, members of the Delaware General Assembly, and more than 125 guests and friends as they unveiled a new Delaware historical marker on Monday, November 15, 2021. The new Indian Mission School historical marker details the school that was founded by the Nanticoke Indian Tribe that established the school in the 1920s, and is located on the Nanticoke Indian Center grounds in Millsboro, Delaware.

Senate minority leader questions governor’s COVID stance


Over the past week, I have received numerous questions and concerns regarding the Department of Education's proposed Regulation 815. Specifically, my constituents and I were confused about the language which is being added into a new section titled COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention. The section as currently written appears to permanently implement face coverings without any qualifying factors such as an emergency order. This has been confirmed by others who are familiar with the regulatory process, both in private conversations and in various forms of media. My staff and I have been told by DOE that this regulation would not be permanent, and that clarifying language would be added to make this clear. As of this writing, no such language has been inserted.

Permanent school mask mandate is on hold – for now


A regulation that many interpreted to mean Delaware schools would indefinitely require mask-wearing is on hold - for now. A proposed amendment to Delaware Administrative Code 815 - the rule schools follow for health examinations and screenings - would have added a section titled "COVID-19 Mitigation and Prevention."

General Assembly passes redistricting bill; new district lines take effect next election


When Delawareans vote for their state representatives and senators a year from now, they could find out that they live in a new legislative district. That's because during a special session of the General Assembly on Monday, both chambers approved Senate Bill 199, which redraws those district boundaries.

Slaughter Beach mayor asks Dems to rethink moving town to new Senate district


If Senate Democrats have their way, the town of Slaughter Beach could become part of the 16th Senate District - and the mayor is not happy about it. Democratic leaders in the State Senate published draft maps of Delaware's 21 Senate districts Monday and announced a date for the legislature to consider a final redistricting bill.

Senate to reconvene to consider nominations Wednesday, redistricting Nov. 1


The Delaware Senate has been called on by the governor to return to Dover Wednesday for a special session. Gov. John Carney called the one-day session to have the Senate vote on the confirmation of nine gubernatorial nominees.

COMMENTARY: Delaware’s agriculture is here to stay


It was a hot and humid mid-July day, one of the warmest in the summer up to that point. The tractor I was using on my family's farm had cut out, so I headed back to the farmhouse to get a couple of tools. Oddly, such hurdles don't get under my skin. There was a job to be done, so there was no need - or time - to be annoyed. To say that many here in Sussex have a deep appreciation for Delaware's agricultural community would be a gross understatement. I come from a family of farmers. In fact, our family is direct descendants of the owners of the land where the Town of Georgetown is now located. While not debating legislation in the Senate, I can often be found working on our family farm. Sometimes, it's even necessary to have to repair broken-down equipment in the middle of the day.

Commentary: The time is now for us to invest in rural broadband internet


For race fans, Delaware is known for being home of the "Monster Mile." Hosting horse races, NASCAR and even the IndyCar at one point, Dover International Speedway has been a fixture in our state since 1969. By contrast, Delawareans living in rural areas know the state as home of the "last mile." Slow, unreliable internet is prevalent in Kent and Sussex counties once you leave the more urban settings. In many instances, internet access isn't even available.

'He is home to rest': Long-lost WWII soldier Lt. George M. Johnson honored at Seaford service


Finally, after nearly 78 years, there is closure. Full military honors, a patriotic flyover and immense outpouring of respect from a caring community punctuated funeral services Saturday for U.S. Army Air Force 2nd Lt. George M. Johnson - one of the long lost souls from World War II.

Delaware will require teachers and school staff members to be vaccinated or undergo COVID-19 testing


Delaware will require teachers to be vaccinated or undergo regular testing for COVID-19, Gov. John Carney announced Tuesday. The requirement, which will be formally issued by emergency regulation, takes effect Nov. 1 and applies to teachers, staff members, contractors and volunteers who work in Delaware's public and private K-12 schools.

Delaware’s first redistricting hearing of 2021 promises transparency


With a pledge of openness and transparency, two leaders of the state's Democratic Party - Sen. Dave Sokola of Newark and House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf of Rehoboth Beach - hosted the year's first public hearing on redistricting Tuesday. The redistricting process is the constitutionally mandated redrawing of legislative areas stemming from the 2020 U.S. census.

Gov. Carney, Lt. Gov. Hall-Long, Sen. Carper, Rep. Blunt Rochester Announce $110M Universal Broadband Investment


Governor John Carney, Lieutenant Governor Bethany Hall-Long, U.S. Senator Tom Carper, U.S. Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester, members of the General Assembly, and the Delaware Department of Technology and Information (DTI) on Thursday announced a $110 million investment to cover every "last mile" of Delaware with high-speed, wireline broadband internet service. "Many of the local officials have long said that additional investment must be made in broadband connectivity," said State Senator Brian Pettyjohn. "As the events...

Unclaimed Property MONEY MATCH Program reunites over $900,000 to Delaware Taxpayers


The State's MONEY MATCH program automatically returns lost money to Delaware taxpayers without the usual need to file a claim or gather paperwork, Delaware State Escheator, Brenda Mayrack announced today. This is the second time Delaware has completed the Money Match program. In February 2021, Delaware mailed checks to more than 19,000 people, returning over $3 million back to its rightful owners. In September 2021, Delaware will be mailing checks to over 6,500 additional people, and returning over $900,000 back to its rightful owners.

Beebe, TidalHealth hospitals to pause elective surgeries as COVID-19 hospitalizations rise


Beebe Healthcare and Tidal Health will temporarily pause elective surgeries due to the spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations, officials said Monday. Beebe's announcement, which goes into effect Sept. 14, is "out of an abundance of caution," officials said. In the early weeks of the pandemic, nearly all of the Delaware hospitals paused elective procedures, but resumed them months later.

Mom’s efforts to change law means homeschooled kids get more services


Three years ago, as their daughter was about to enter kindergarten, Megan and Buddy Willey learned young Caroline would no longer qualify for speech therapy through the school district. The Bridgeville family homeschools their children, two of whom require the services of a speech pathologist.

$80 million Clean Water Act sets up trust to direct cash into projects


A bipartisan bill aimed at addressing wastewater and drinking water issues in Delaware's underserved communities was signed into law by Gov. John Carney Thursday after six years in the making.

Bill to mandate police body cameras signed into law


Delaware has become the eighth state in the country to mandate the statewide use of body cameras by police officers.

Delaware Has Preserved 143,000 Acres of Farmland After 25th Round


Delaware announced its 25th consecutive round of easement selections by the Delaware Agricultural Lands Preservation Foundation. With the preservation of 3,695 acres, Delaware has permanently preserved more than 143,000 acres of farmland for future generations.

State announces its plan for COVID testing in schools


The Division of Public Health has announced a new partnership to provide comprehensive COVID-19 testing, processing, and reporting in the state's schools. The partnership is with the Department of Education and Quidel Corporation to provide on-the-spot results in as little as 10 minutes. Quidel will use its rapid antigen tests for testing.

Dedication Ceremony, Ribbon Cutting Held for Vanderwende-Evans Conservation Center


The Sussex Conservation District (SCD) recently held an open house and dedication ceremony for the Vanderwende-Evans Conservation Center. Over 100 guests, state and local representatives attended the dedication ceremony and ribbon cutting then toured the facility.

Delaware hits 70% vaccination mark before Fourth of July


Gov. John Carney and the state's top public health officer on Thursday hailed Delaware hitting the federal goal of 70% of those eligible getting at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine before the Fourth of July.

House, Senate send largest bond bill ever to Carney for signature


Delaware residents will soon see the effects of a $1.35 billion spending package authorized by both houses of the General Assembly on Tuesday.

Republican, Democrat join forces on complimentary bills to help grow trade professions


These days, it seems like Democrats and Republicans aren't able to agree on much. But on Wednesday, a Republican state senator and Democratic state representative combined forces to support each other's bills and help Delaware grow by supporting the tradespeople it desperately needs.

Grant-in-Aid bill breaks records, thanks to surplus


The Joint Finance Committee finished work on the last of the budget bills for next year. And this is the largest Grant-in-Aid bill in state history. Lawmakers are appropriating about $63.2 million towards the state's various non-profits, arts organizations and fire companies. That's a little over $9 million more than the FY 2021 allocation.

Commentary: Looking back, looking forward as Wesley College departs


In these last days of Wesley College, let's take a moment for some context: In July 1873, Jesse James pulled off his first successful train robbery. That August, George Armstrong Custer had his first clash with the Sioux Indians. In Dover, on Sept. 1, the Wilmington Conference Academy - which later became Wesley College - was officially chartered, three weeks before a stock market crash led to a major national depression. I continue to doubt that Wesley's charter had anything to do with the Panic of 1873.

COVID cases, vaccinations remain steady in Delaware


Delaware's vaccination program continues to progress nicely, with one key vaccination rate now at 69.4%, just shy of the initial goal of 70%.

Sussex County opens EMS hub in Seaford


Sussex County's highly acclaimed Emergency Medical Services paramedic program has a new home in the bustling heart of western Sussex County.

Delaware Population Numbers Promises Low Economic Growth


Growth in population drives economic growth. A growing population increases demand for goods and services, and a growing working-age population means increased production.

Governor Carney to Lift COVID-19 State of Emergency on July 13


Governor John Carney on Tuesday announced that he intends to lift the COVID-19 State of Emergency Order on July 13. Governor Carney first signed the emergency order on March 12, 2020 to confront the spread of COVID-19 in Delaware communities.

10 Ideas to Bolster Delaware’s Volunteer Fire Companies


A task force has laid out a 10-point plan to address the membership crisis among volunteer fire departments threatening fire protection throughout Delaware. "The decline in new volunteers is alarming, as Delaware's firefighters provide an invaluable service to our communities," Sen. Brian Pettyjohn, a member of that task force and the Senate minority whip.

Delaware Senate OKs bill on cash bail, sends it to the House


DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's state Senate approved a bill Thursday requiring more people charged with crimes to pay cash bail in order to be released from custody pending trial.

Delaware's COVID Hospitalizations drop below 200


On Tuesday, Delaware's COVID-19 hospitalizations dropped below 200 for the first time since November.

FEMA and Delaware Officials Opening COVID-19 Vaccination Center in Dover


The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Health and Human Services (HHS), Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA), Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH), and Dover International Speedway (DIS) have partnered to open a drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination site for six days beginning Saturday, February 20, 2021.

GOP Senators: Bloom Energy Deal Continues to Cost Delaware


Nine years after the passage of 2011's SB124, Bloom energy continues to cost Delmarva ratepayers more on their energy bill while failing to live up to the company's promises - and their agreement with the state.