Carper’s Connection – In-State Work Period Review, September 2011

Dear Fellow Delawarean,

In August and early September, I spent the Senate’s In-State Work Period traveling up and down the First State hearing the needs, concerns, and successes of Delawareans. From my first event – welcoming home National Guard troops from Afghanistan in Smyrna – to one of my last – cutting the ribbon at the new National Guard Army Aviation Support Facility in New Castle – I was overwhelmed by Delawareans’ sacrifice for our country. After all, responsibility is the Delaware Way, and every group or person I met across the state reminded me of that.

I also saw many other examples of Delaware’s contributions to our state and nation. In Dover, I watched students graduate from the U.S. Cyber Challenge Camp at DelTech, which prepared them to be the next generation of American cyber security professionals trained to protect our nation from a new form of terrorism. In Camden, residents and I celebrated local farming in the Wyoming Peach Festival Parade, a reminder of the tremendous impact Delaware’s agricultural community has on our state’s – and the nation’s – economy.

As I return to Washington, my colleagues and I will be redoubling our efforts to address the many challenges facing our economy, including the need to help the private sector create more jobs and to curb our massive federal deficit. As we tackle these significant challenges, I’ll be remembering these contributions and the sense of responsibility that I saw this month – and that I’ve always seen – across Delaware.

Remembering 9/11

This month, we marked the 10th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania. As we remembered those we lost on that day, I recalled the sense of unity America displayed in the days, weeks, and months after 9/11 in a video for Carper’s Corner.

In Dover and New Castle, on September 11th, I stood proudly beside our first responders, firefighters, police officers, and servicemembers to honor the memory of those we lost and thank all those who have sacrificed over the last decade to make our state and nation stronger and safer.

Improving our Economy and Environment through Clean Energy

In Dover and Bridgeville, I visited with innovative citizens building a bright future based on clean energy.

On August 10, I went to Kent County to tour the site of the new Dover Sun Park, which will be the largest utility-scale solar power plant in the region. In addition to improving our environment, this plant created between 100 and 150 jobs during construction and will generate enough electricity to power over 1,000 homes.

For more information about my views on energy and the environment, click here.

Strengthening Education for Delaware’s Children and Veterans

From Dover to Wilmington to Smyrna, I spent time talking to kids, veterans, and teachers about how to strengthen education in the First State.

In Dover, I highlighted improvements to the GI Bill that will strengthen educational opportunities for our veterans.

In Wilmington, I stopped by Westside Family Healthcare to participate in the Reach Out and Read program by reading to children. This innovative program combines children’s health care and education to help develop a unique approach to successful learning.

For photos of the GI Bill press conference, click here.

You can see photos of me with the kids at Westside Family Healthcare, as well as photos from events across New Castle County in August, by clicking here.

Responding to Natural Disasters and Improving Delaware’s Infrastructure

On August 29 – in Rehoboth, Fenwick and Georgetown – first responders, local officials, and Delawareans of all stripes shared their stories with me of preparing for and responding to Hurricane Irene. I’m proud of the job they did before, during, and after Irene to protect property and save lives.

Earlier this month, I also was proud to announce a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grant to extend the runway at the Sussex County Airport in Georgetown. This is just the kind of infrastructure project we should be focusing on right now as we try to put Delawareans back to work.

Celebrating Delaware’s World Champions

One of the joys of my recent time in-state was meeting the proud, talented young women of the Laurel Senior League Softball team – the champions of the Senior League Softball World Series.

These world champions defeated Latin America 2-0 on August 13 to win the crown, and I couldn’t be more proud of their success.


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With warm personal regards,

Tom Carper