News

Polar Bear Plunge website

The 25th annual Lewes Polar Bear Plunge raised $820-thousand this Sunday.

That’s up from $780-thousand last year.

And more than 35-hundred people found themselves diving into the cold waters of the Atlantic to raise money for Special Olympics Delaware.

When they dove in the water temperature was 43 degrees.

Last year it was down to 37.

The coldest plunge took place in 1995 with a minus 20-degree wind chill factor.

On Sunday the air temperature was a balmy 45 degrees.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginians who aren't registered to vote but want to cast ballots in the March 1 presidential primary need to act fast.

Monday is the deadline to register.

In Virginia, voters don't register by party. Any registered voter may choose to cast a ballot in either the Democratic or Republican primary.

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NEWARK, Del. (AP) - The Newark Police Department says crime in the city has decreased by 48 percent since 2006.

The News Journal in Wilmington reports that the department credits targeted policing, a network of surveillance cameras and increased community policing as factors behind the decrease.

Police Chief Paul Tiernan says that when he joined the force in September 2007, many armed robberies and other crimes were occurring at off-campus housing for the University of Delaware.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Advocates for domestic violence victims in Virginia are praising a rare compromise in Richmond that could shepherd into law a measure that would strip abusers of their gun rights.

But the bill being considered in Virginia doesn't go as far as many of the states with similar laws, drawing criticism from gun-control activists who say more work needs to be done.

Salisbury Police badge website

Two suspects are being sought in a Saturday home invasion in Salisbury.

Police say that the victims were an elderly couple – an 88 year old man and 65 year old woman.

It occurred on Christopher Street.

WBOC reports that police say the suspects entered through an open and unlocked door.

Authorities say that the couple tried to get the two to leave.
But the woman was pushed against a wall while the man was hit in the face.

Police say the two took items from the house and then fled.

This week we will meet Snow Hill painter Paul Volker. We’ll learn about Furnace Town. Scott Duncan brings us the February garden planner, and naturalist Jim Rapp will tell us about Delmarva's visiting winter songbirds.

Timothy Young

There was a light dusting of snow this morning but less than expected with the winter weather advisory ending early at 10 a.m.

Many local schools closed before the snowfall including the tri-county area of Wicomico, Worcester and Somerset County as well as in Delaware. 

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that there was as much as 1 to 3 inches of snow.

Temperatures are expected to be in the 30's today, inching up into the 40's during the weekend.

Travelers are advised to be aware of ice and slush.

Don Rush

The Accomack County Board of Supervisors has decided to impose tighter regulations on poultry houses.

They are believed to be the toughest rules for the poultry industry on Delmarva.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that under the ordinance approved on Wednesday the new regulations range from requiring a landscape plan and a maximum of five chicken houses per acre to increased setbacks from existing homes, mobile home parks and other structures.

There would also be a new 400-feeot setback from undeveloped property.

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SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - A judge has declared a mistrial in the trial of a man accused of killing another man in a home invasion in Salisbury.

Twenty-year-old Daequan White of Salisbury is charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of 20-year-old James Skinner. 

Skinner was found dead in the doorway of his home on May 17 after several men entered the home and held people inside at gunpoint.

legis.delaware.gov

Delaware House Majority Leader Valerie Longhurst (D-Bear) says she will try to close a loop hole that allows a gun store to go ahead with a sale when the background check fails to come back in three days.

The Wilmington News Journal reports noted that nationally the FBI says over 15-thousand 5-hundred gun buys went forward because of the loophole.

In the shooting that left 9 people dead at a South Carolina church accused shooter Dylan Roof got his gun because the background took more than three days.

In the first half of today's program, we look at ways to avoid scams and fraud. In the second half, we sit down with former Salisbury Mayor Jim Ireton to discuss his run for Maryland's 1st Congressional District.

Guests: Sabrina K. Bleech, Vice President of M&T Bank

Roxane L Gabrielson, CPA and Certified Valuation Analyst.

Leslie A. Michalik, CPA and Certified Fraud Examiner

and Jim Ireton, Candidate for Maryland's 1st Congressional District.

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Enrollment in Delaware’s health exchange under Obamacare is up.

State officials say that more than 28,250 people signed up for plans or were automatically renewed.

That was a 13 percent increase over last year.

State Health and Social Services Secretary Rita Landgraf says that 22 percent involved new enrollees as of late December while 78 percent were renewals.

Nationally, there were around 12.7 million people who signed  up or automatically renewed their plans.

The deadline for signing up on the exchange was last Sunday.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A legislative panel has approved a bill that would require students to use the bathroom that corresponds with their biological sex.

The Daily Press reports that the bill would mandate that school systems and state agencies adopt policies designed to keep transgender people from using the bathroom of the gender with which they identify. 

The House General Laws subcommittee endorsed the bill Thursday.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A bill that's getting bipartisan support in the General Assembly would allow people who had minor alcohol or marijuana possession offenses when they were under the age of 21 to have their records expunged.

Under Republican Sen. Ryan McDougle's bill, offenders would have to wait five years after serving their sentence before asking the court to erase their record.

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It will cost anywhere from $150-thousand to $400-thousand to repair the damage to the boardwalk in Rehoboth Beach by the recent winter storms.

That’s the estimate from a city consulting engineer.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the city commissioners are now trying to decide how to come up with the money.

Commissioner Stan Mills says told the paper that there was a hope that the federal government might provide some assistance as well as some help from Delaware lawmakers.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A House committee has punted on a bill to limit the personal use of campaign funds by Virginia politicians.

The GOP-controlled panel voted Thursday to put off until next year a vote on the legislation, which was a top ethics priority of Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

Virginia has one of the least restrictive campaign finance systems in the country, and lawmakers are only barred from using campaign funds for personal use when they close out their accounts.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. Jack Markell is joining Delaware's congressional delegation for a groundbreaking ceremony on a long-awaited road project to ease traffic congestion in southern New Castle County.

Federal Highway Administrator Gregory Nadeau also is among those scheduled to attend Friday's groundbreaking for the U.S. 301 project.

The new 301 will be limited-access, four-lane toll road stretching from the Maryland/Delaware state line to State Route 1 north of the Biddles Corner Toll Plaza.

That's right! You can Run for Radio...Delmarva Public Radio, that is...AND let your freak flag fly at our inaurugal 5K Tie Die Run for Radio. Or, you can walk the 3.1 mile course. Either way, you'll get outside, get some exercise, and help support the WSCL and WSDL...which bring you SO much more than any other public stations because we're FOCUSED on Delmarva. REGISTRATION and details are at http://www.races2run.com/events/tie-dye-5k-for-radio/ .

Don Rush

EASTON, Md. (AP) - At least $1 million in federal money earmarked to build new oyster reefs on the Eastern Shore will instead go to Virginia after Maryland officials asked that the project be delayed.
 

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland's top election official wants to scrap touch-screen voting machines in favor of paper ballots for early voting before the April primaries.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Legislation to make drug makers reveal how much they spend marketing high-priced drugs appears dead before the Virginia General Assembly.
 
Senators said the bill wasn't ready for prime time, but was an issue worth reviewing next year after further study. A panel voted Thursday to pass the bill on to next year.
 
Health insurers pushed the legislation, saying more transparency about drug prices would help deter bad actors in the pharmaceutical business from price gouging.
 

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Football fans are gearing up for this weekend's Super Bowl. It's been fifty years since its inception and stars a set of contrasting quarterbacks and amid controversy over concussions. Delmarva Public Radio Don Rush spoke with East Coast sportswriter Mike Lurie about the history of the game and what to expect on the field this weekend.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Republican Gov. Larry Hogan is sounding a bipartisan tone in his annual State of the State speech.

"Let us blaze that new path for Maryland with the full knowledge that people of this great state stand firmly behind us. Let's work together to come up with real bipartisan common sense solutions. And let us continue to embrace that middle temperment."

Don Rush

During the education budget presentation Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver told council members this week he would like to offer county high school graduates free tuition at Wor-Wic Community College.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that those who qualify would have to be residents of the county for two years, enroll in a degree or certificate program, apply and accept all financial assistance and enroll for 12 credits or more.

Guaduates from Delmar High school would also be eligible.

Books would not be covered.  

pbs.org

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A bill before the Maryland House of Delegates would remove from the Maryland State House grounds a statue of the Supreme Court chief justice who wrote the 1857 Dred Scott decision affirming slavery.

The Frederick News-Post reports that the bill regarding the statue of Roger Brooke Taney was introduced Monday by Democrat Jill Carter of Baltimore.

It comes amid a national debate about the appropriateness of racially divisive symbols in public spaces.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Officials are updating this year's final enrollment numbers on Delaware's health insurance exchange.

Sunday was the deadline to sign up for exchange coverage this year under the Affordable Care Act.

Federal officials reported last week that more than 26,500 had selected plans on Delaware's exchange, but Delaware's Health Care Commission will get an update Thursday.

More than 80 percent of enrolled Delawareans have qualified for premium subsidies.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Larry Hogan has appointed Del. Craig Zucker to a vacant seat in the Maryland Senate.

Doug Mayer, a Hogan spokesman, said the appointment was made Wednesday.

Zucker, a Montgomery County Democrat, will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of former Sen. Karen Montgomery, D-Montgomery. Zucker is scheduled to be sworn in Thursday.

Delaware Law Enforcement

DOVER, Del. (AP) - The family of an alcoholic man who died in custody has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Delaware prison officials and medical workers.

The lawsuit filed Wednesday claims that prison workers acted with deliberate indifference toward 48-year-old Ronald Shoup and used unnecessary and unjustified force to restrain him after he became agitated and aggressive.

Shoup was imprisoned in Sussex County in February 2014 after showing up drunk at a hearing regarding his fifth DUI charge.

Delaware Center for Homeless Veterans website

The Delaware Center for Homeless Veterans has agreed to buy the former Layton Home in Wilmington.

If the deal goes through it would make the facility the largest in the state.

The vacant nursing home has 48-thousand square feet.

David Mosley, who founded the non-profit, told the Wilmington News Journal that there was no problem in filling the facility.

He added there is already a waiting list.

Capital One Logo

There is another set of layoffs hitting Delaware.

This time 109 employees of Capital One in Wilmington will see some pink slips.

The bank is shutting down its mortgage side of the business to simplify the mortgage operations.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the announcement comes after the company slashed around 21-hundred positions nationwide last year.

The paper says the bank had more than 25-hundred employees in Wilmington by the end of 2015.

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