- Associated Press - Thursday, January 23, 2014

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. Jack Markell says downtown areas in towns and cities across Delaware could use some sprucing up.

In his State of the State address Thursday, Markell proposed dedicating $7 million in state funds for projects investing in downtown areas.

The governor proposed creating Downtown Development Districts that would qualify for development incentives and other benefits in housing and transportation.

Markell says builders investing in those districts would receive grants for a percentage of their investment.

The governor says the state money will help leverage tens of millions of dollars in private capital for downtown projects, which he says can improve both business opportunities and the state’s housing stock