Delaware’s Best Days are Still Ahead

Dear Friend,

Throughout my time as Delaware’s State Treasurer, Congressman, Governor and now U.S. Senator, I’ve worked to make Delaware a great place to work and raise a family. That includes creating a nurturing environment for job growth and job creation across our state.

One of the hardest times for so many families here was the closing of Newark’s Chrysler Plant, which at one point employed more than 5,000 people. I worked hard over the years to save that plant from closing until it was ultimately shuttered in 2008. The dilemma the state faced then was: What would the future of our economy look like, and how could we attract employers with good-paying jobs to make this their new home?

The answer was an all-hands-on-deck collaboration between the University of Delaware, local, state and federal governments and private industry to create a vision for the future that would include academics, research and cutting-edge industries. The Science, Technology and Advanced Research Campus (STAR) Campus – as it’s known today – is a hub of innovation in health, energy, the environment, and financial technology, right along the Northeast Corridor.

One important piece of the STAR Campus that still needed to be resolved was access to public transportation. Newark was in dire need of upgrades then to its rail station, which saw passengers from both Amtrak and SEPTA regional rail. As a long-time member and current Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, I have supported investing in our transportation infrastructure, including public transportation. So, we got to work, fighting for the funding to create a modern, accessible and safe rail station that would better accommodate passengers who work and learn at the STAR Campus. More than $20 million in federal funding has been secured since 2010 to complete the Newark Regional Transportation Center, and I was humbled when Delaware lawmakers came together earlier this month to rename it in my honor. It is undeserved, but not unappreciated!

The First State has seen its share of economic ups and downs throughout the years, but we’ve always come out stronger, and I truly believe our best days are still ahead!


Tom Carper