University of Delaware Library

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Thomas R. Carper
Congressional Papers

See below for collection citation and reference information.

I.D. Regional Issues Files, 1983-1992

+ Series I.D. -- Scope and Content Note
+ Series I.D. -- Contents List

Extent: 3 linear ft.

Boxes: 50 - 53

Contents: Correspondence, legislation, news clippings, reports.

Arrangement: Arranged alphabetically by topic and then chronologically. Further subdivided by geographical region: Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania.


Carper with Mike Castle, Govenor of Delaware, 1985-1992 Highlights of the Regional Issues Files include Boxing Reform legislation, St. Georges Bridge maintenance and construction of a new bridge across the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal, the Delaware Air Force Base, and the many environmental issues pertinent to Delaware and Delawareans. Complementing many of the other series of the collection, this series also illustrates Congressman Carper's work on behalf of his constituency.

Boxing Reform legislation developed as a result of a fight in February of 1992 in New Jersey. Delaware native Dave Tiberi lost to opponent James Toney but many fans felt that the officials had scored the match incorrectly and that Tiberi should have won. It was discovered that not all of the officials working the fight were licensed to officiate in New Jersey. In addition, officials scoring the win for Toney were from the Midwest, as was Toney. It was believed that inexperience with New Jersey rules and partiality for a contestant from their area had biased the officials. In 1992, Congressman Carper and Senator Bill Roth introduced bills H.R. 5813 and S. 2852 respectively, proposing boxing reform and regulation. Carper's bill, H.R. 5813, the Federal Boxer Protection Act of 1992, called for the establishment of a Federal Boxing Commission and uniform standards relating to compensation, working conditions, safety of equipment, and training of officials in boxing matches. The bill also would have mandated minimum medical standards necessary for reasonably safe fights. This last clause was an attempt to prevent deaths in the ring. It appeared that less skilled boxers from foreign countries were listed to fight boxers in a comparable weight class but with more skill. This led to serious injury and, in some cases, death.

The bill would also give the Federal Boxing Commission the right to enforce these standards. Boxing legislation has been introduced since Carper first entered Congress in the 98th session, 1983. Carper introduced his bill on August 11, 1992, but the bill did not pass. Roth's bill, the Professional Boxing Corporation Act of 1992, also failed to make it out of committee.

Dispute over construction of a new bridge to cross the Chesapeake and Delaware (C & D) Canal and continued maintenance of the old St. Georges bridge is documented in this series. The Canal cuts Delaware in half. To many Delawareans, including Carper, the canal benefitted other states more than the people of Delaware. Carper asked for and was successful in receiving, from the House, funding for construction of a new bridge and continued maintenance of the old St. Georges bridge. Carper argued that closing the old bridge would defeat the purpose of constructing a new bridge as traffic volume would not be alleviated and the town of St. Georges would be adversely affected by the loss of a local thoroughfare. Eventually, the Army Corps of Engineers and the Bush administration relented and agreed to Carper's pleas for funding of both bridges. Carper noted that this project was one of the five largest highway projects underway in the country at the time (1992), and felt it represented an enormous investment by the federal government in Delaware.

The Dover Air Force Base (DAFB) was also strongly defended by Carper. He was successful in obtaining appropriations for Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993 from the MILCON (military construction) Subcommittee of the Defense Committee. Carper also fought to obtain funding for a runway extension at DAFB in 1986, and against the closing of DAFB in 1990 and 1991. He was successful in all three of these undertakings.

In 1988, Delaware was nominated to be included in the National Estuary Program. This program, administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), provided funding for development and implementation of management plans and programs to conserve and enhance estuarine resources. Inclusion in this program was a coup for Carper because Delaware was heavily dependent upon its aquatic resources for commerce, recreation, and tourism. The neighboring states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania also figured into this program, highlighting once again the interstate cooperation Carper fostered throughout his tenure in Congress.

In 1992, Carper was successful in obtaining from Congress authorization for the White Clay Creek Study. The purpose of the study was to determine eligibility of the White Clay Creek for potential addition to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. The System was designated by Congress in 1968 to preserve free-flowing rivers in response to the over-damming, over-channelizing, and over-development of rivers in the United States. In addition to the possible designation of White Clay Creek as part of the System, Carper and others involved in the request for the study also desired the National Park Service, the agency administering the study, to develop and recommend a management plan for the watershed. Carper introduced White Clay Creek Study Act, H.R. 3012, on July 24, 1991 and the bill was passed and made into Public Law (PL-102-215) on December 11, 1991. The three-year study commenced in 1992. The study is complete, and the White Clay Creek has been included in a proposal for inclusion in the Wild and Scenic Rivers System.

Also included in this subseries is evidence of Carper's work on behalf of constituents such as individuals in the case of the Coastal Barriers Resource Act (F17-19), and businesses such as W.L. Gore (F65-67) and Hercules (F80-81).

+ Contents List for Series I.D. Regional Issues Files

+ Return to Index Page for Thomas R. Carper Congressional Papers

+ Guide to Other Political Papers at the University of Delaware Library

+ Return to List of Manuscript Finding Aids by Title

citation and reference information:

Thomas R. Carper
Congressional Papers

1979 - 1993
(bulk dates 1982 - 1992)

Manuscript Collection Number: 399
Accessioned: Gift of Thomas R. Carper, 1992, 1998-1999
Extent: 84 linear ft. and oversize material
Content: Legislation, correspondence, reports, documents and publications, memoranda, speeches, photographs, audio-visual material, newsletters, news clippings, and ephemera.
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: November 1997 - December 1999 by Rebecca J. Altermatt with assistance from Rob Costello; edited by L. Rebecca Johnson Melvin.

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