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State Democrats happy to see support from Gov. Carney for some initiatives

Elizabeth Lockman

Democratic state lawmakers were mostly unsurprised by Gov. John Carney’s State of the State address.

Carney delivered an optimistic outlook on the upcoming year, highlighting a positive budget outlook, and many initiatives the state is making towards improving outcomes for Delawareans.

Among them, Carney announced his support for State Sen. Sarah McBride’s paid family leave bill, SB 1.

McBride says she’s excited the bill is getting very much needed traction.

“I’m incredibly grateful and excited to be working with Gov. Carney,” McBride says. “Throughout his time in office, Gov. Carney protected our health and promoted economic growth — and paid leave does just that. No policy in my mind lies more at the heart of our public health and economic recovery than paid family and medical leave.”

Carney says ensuring paid leave for folks in the private sector will support the many businesses and workers coming into the state.

One of Carney’s major pushes continues to be creation of a Wilmington Learning Collaborative to improve outcomes among city students.

State Sen. Elizabeth Lockman, who chairs the Redding Consortium designed to look at this issue, commends Carney for doing the difficult work of reaching out to stakeholders on this plan.

“He really has been knocking doors in the potentially impacted communities to have conversations about this,” says Lockman. “So, that’s kind of the best way to engage folks on things; particularly in the city of Wilmington I think.”

Lockman says she believes there is growing awareness about this idea, and hopes that will translate to support among the school boards serving the city

Carney is arguing there is an urgency to solve these problems, and believes this plan will work.

Overall, Democrats were happy the governor made an effort to include more initiatives from lawmakers.

But State Rep. Ed Osienski notes the real show of support will come when Carney presents his recommended budget next week.

Roman Battaglia is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms.

Corrected: January 20, 2022 at 7:35 PM EST
This story has been updated to correct a typo
Roman Battaglia grew up in Portland, Ore, and now reports for Delaware Public Media as a Report For America corps member. He focuses on politics, elections and legislation activity at the local, county and state levels.
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