Inside the University of Delaware's STAR Campus, where a Chrysler assembly line once churned out brand new cars, Gov. John Carney earlier today addressed a room of real estate developers, planners and commercial lenders on the economic future of the state.
"We have revenues that aren't growing fast enough to keep up with expenses," Gov. Carney said. "But we know in the long-term that the way to get out of an unbalanced fiscal situation is to grow out of it."
The governor gave the keynote speech for a panel held by the Urban Land Institute of Philadelphia, a research and education non-profit focused on real estate development and land use in the region. He urged that the days of a few large companies powering the economy are over, and that the state needs to look at a range of new opportunities to succeed.
"The goal is to maximize the innovation-entrepreneurial economy," he said.
He added that the state shouldn't keep looking out for the next big thing, but instead the next 50 things that could help grow the economy.
After the speech, a group of expert panelists discussed how economic development projects and public sector programs have affected their own efforts. The panelists included:
- Middletown Mayor Kenneth Branner
- Kevin P. Kelly, President of Leon N. Weiner & Associates
- Edward C. Ratledge, Director, University of Delaware Center for Applied Demographics and Survey Research
- Jeremy Sunkett, Director of Real Estate, University of Delaware
- Moderator: Jay White, President, Apex Realty Advisors
The conversation touched on the state's regulatory environment, tactics for attracting new businesses to Delaware communities, and the effectiveness of state and local incentive programs.