Governor John Carney joined his counterparts from five east coast states in announcing a coordinated approach to restarting the region’s economy after its virtual shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Carney, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, and Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo will work together to create an “integrated regional framework to gradually lift the states’ stay at home orders.”
The governors said this would build on their efforts to date in coordinating health responses across the six states.
A regional council made up of key representatives from each state will begin meeting to plan how states can get people back to work safely and expeditiously.
The coordinating groups in each state will be comprised of
• one health expert
• one economic development expert
• the respective Chief of Staff from each state
The six states together will develop plans to gradually lift the states’ stay at home orders while minimizing any risks that increase spread of the virus.
Delaware will be represented on the panel by the governor’s chief of staff, Sheila Grant, health secretary Dr. Kara Odom Walker and Kurt Foreman, President and CEO, Delaware Prosperity Partnership.
The governors said the new council will use “every tool available to accomplish the goal of easing social isolation without triggering renewed spread.”
Governor Carney said the multi-state approach will “really just formalize” what he already been doing along with Governors Murphy (NJ) and Wolf (PA) as the three have made decisions about shutting down businesses, supply chains and schools.
“I heard, Governor Murphy say yesterday that we need to get the patients healthy before we can get the economy healthy, and I think he’s exactly right. So working together, our economies are connected, our states are connected in a real way, in terms of transportation and visitation, and the rest,” said Carney.
Carney reiterated that Delaware has not yet reached its peak and that discussions around timelines for reopening schools and businesses is still premature.
“We still have a situation in Delaware that is getting worse. Infections of COVID-19 and hospitalizations are rising,” said Carney. “At the same time, we need to look forward. We need a consistent approach for moving our states out of this crisis, when that day comes.
“So working together, our economies are connected. Our states are connected in a real way, in terms of transportation and visitation, and the rest. And so our working together, sharing our information and intelligence, I think will help each of us make better decisions.”