Don Rush

Assoc. Program Director- Sr. Producer News and Public Affairs

Don Rush is the News Director at Public Radio Delmarva (WSCL/WSDL) in Salisbury, Maryland on the campus of Salisbury University. He has spent the last 35 years in broadcast journalism specializing in national politics. Before coming to Salisbury he spent 12 years in Washington DC with the Pacifica Network News bureau. During the 1980’s he was News Director at KFPK in his home town of Los Angeles. He also worked for the Los Angeles based wire and audio news service CNS/RNW. Locally, he has become an award winning journalist covering everything from development and environmental issues to local politics.

official campaign photo

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The Virginia Supreme Court will meet Tuesday to hear arguments in a Republican lawsuit trying to block more than 200,000 former felons in the state from voting in November.

At issue in the case is whether the state's constitution allows governors to restore voting rights to ex-felons en masse or requires them to be handled on a case-by-case basis.

Republican lawmakers who sued McAuliffe say the governor clearly violated the constitution and ignored decades of practice with his April executive order.

Nicole Carry

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The city council of Norfolk will welcome its first openly gay council member at its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday.

The Virginian-Pilot newspaper reports that 46-year-old Nicole Carry is also believed to be the council's first Navy veteran in recent history.

The assignment will be temporary. Carry replaces a member who had to resign because he ran for mayor, unsuccessfully, earlier this year.

Chesapeake Bay and Tunnel website

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Bids for a new parallel tunnel on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel have been revised downward from three contractors.

The Virginian Pilot reports that the bids are still higher than were initially expected, but they are now much closer to the original $724.4 million estimate under scaled-back proposals.

Jeff Holland, the bridge's executive director, says officials are very pleased with the results released Friday.

He declined to list specific changes to the project until July 27, when a subcommittee will meet to recommend which company to select.

creative commons wikimedia

Last week two African Americans who had legal guns in their possession died at the hands of police officers setting off nationwide protests. Then five Dallas police officers were killed by a gunman just days later. All of this got Delmarva Public Radio Essayist George Merrill to ponder the role of guns in society.

Over The Rainbow Shop

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) - Small-town pride has a new meaning in rural America.

Now that victories for same-sex marriage and other LGBT rights have made it easier for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people to live openly, many more small towns are getting LGBT resource centers and pride festivals, including Saturday's event in downtown Hagerstown, Maryland.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A bipartisan group of governors is calling on Congress to ratify the Trans-Pacific Partnership despite opposition from both leading presidential candidates.
The governors of Iowa, Virginia and Louisiana said Friday the agreement would help businesses export more products and create jobs.
They joined with U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, who's leading the Obama administration's efforts to sell the plan to skeptical lawmakers.

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - NASA says the commercial space company Orbital ATK will send a resupply rocket to the International Space Station around Aug. 22. The launch will be the firm's first from Virginia since a 2014 mishap that destroyed a NASA payload and damaged Virginia's state-owned launch pad.

NASA announced the tentative launch date Thursday, saying the unmanned spacecraft will carry supplies and vehicle hardware to the space station's crew.

creative commons

The Giant Food in Salisbury has been sold to Albertsons which has 22-hundred stores including Acme.

Mayor Jake Day told the Salisbury Daily Times that he got the call from Giant officials yesterday morning.

In addition, he said there will be no store closure and current employees will continue to have their jobs.

The paper also reports that the employee will still be represented by a union.

Albertsons operates stores in 33 states including Acme as well as Safeway and Vons.

Around a hundred people gathered in Middletown to remember the five Dallas police officers who were gunned down last week along with the two African American men who were shot to death by police.

They showed up at Cochran Square for a march, prayer and a vigil last night.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that Reverend Jeffery Broughton with Middletown’s Living Grace Worship Cathedral organized the service which was accompanied by police.

Broughton said that the fight was not only for Black Lives Matter or Blue Lives Matter but for all lives matter.

Lewes Fire Department Facebook

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A Lewes firefighter who died after falling from a helicopter during a training exercise is being honored with a light display at the state capitol.

In honor of firefighter Tim McClanahan, the cupola atop Legislative Hall in Dover will be lighted red this weekend. 

Meanwhile, a viewing for McClanahan will be held from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday at Parsell Funeral Home and Crematorium in Lewes.

Another viewing is planned from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday at Cape Henlopen High School, followed by a funeral.

createive commons

CAMBRIDGE, Md. (AP) - A former Cambridge police officer has been accused of making threats to attack the police department's headquarters.

The Star Democrat of Easton  reports that 47-year-old Matthew R. Collins was arrested and charged Tuesday with making a threat of mass violence and second-degree assault.

The Dorchester County Sheriff's Office says in charging documents that a deputy received a text message from Collins that implied the former officer was intending to attack the headquarters and kill a member of the administrative staff.

The bug for Legionnaires' disease has been fund in the tap water of the Gold Sands Condo in Ocean City.

The Worcester County Health Department said that the bacteria was first discovered last fall when it came across two cases.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the department said that two cases turned up last month.

Kathy Derr, director of communicable diseases, told the paper the facility has hired a water consultant to develop a plan to deal with the outbreak as required.

University of Virginia Seal

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Two Virginia state senators are calling for an investigation into a $2.3 billion University of Virginia surplus.

Sens. Chap Petersen and Bill DeSteph said in a statement Thursday that they intend to formally call for an audit into the fund, which former university board member Helen Dragas called a "slush fund."

The two senators say the fund should be used for lowering student tuition and fees. They also accuse the university of overcharging for its services.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Republican lawmakers have announced a new workgroup focused on loosening government oversight of new or expanded health care facilities in Virginia.

House Speaker William J. Howell and Senate President Pro-Tem Stephen D. Newman said Thursday they had created a new workgroup and were rededicating themselves to changing the state's certificate of need law.


LEWES, Del. (AP) - Funeral arrangements have been made for a Lewes firefighter who died after falling from a helicopter during a training exercise.
Media outlets report a viewing for 46-year-old Tim McClanahan will be held from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday at Parsell Funeral Home and Crematorium in Lewes. Another viewing is planned from noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday at Cape Henlopen High School with his funeral scheduled for 3 p.m.

Don Rush

If you look forward to Punkin Chunkin then its organizers have another event for you.

It the 1st Annual Great American Watermelon Blast which will be held on August 27th in Linkwood, Dorchester County.

The giant machines will be launching beg green melons into the air.

Frank Payton, president of the World Championship Punkin Chunkin Association, told the Salisbury Daily Times that there had been a real desire on the part of local officials to see Punkin Chunkin come to their area.

It ultimately wound up back in Sussex County.

creative commons

WBOC is reporting that there is a financial investigation into the Poplar Hill Correctional Facility.

The television station reports that it has confirmed the probe but Public Safety spokesman Jerry Shields said no charges have been filed.

The station said that Shields could not confirm if there had been any personnel changes as a result of the investigation.

wikimedia commons

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Virginia health officials say they will extend testing for the Zika virus in mosquitoes to the Hampton Roads region.

WTKR-TV reports that none of Virginia's mosquitoes has tested positive for the virus so far. But the state health commissioner says it's likely a matter of time before some will become infected. The virus is known to cause birth defects.

Dr. Marissa Levine, the health commissioner, said more testing will help the state get ahead of Zika and mitigate its spread. 

Delaware Air National Guard website

BETHANY BEACH, Del. (AP) - The Delaware Air National Guard is hosting a training exercise to better prepare state and federal agencies for medical airlifts.

Operation Joint Response 2016 is being held this week at the National Guard's Bethany Beach Training Site.

Participating agencies include the Delaware National Guard, the Maryland Air National Guard and the Division of Public Health.

The Delaware Guard's 166th Medical Group is the lead unit for the exercise, in which medical teams will train to transport patients using C-130 aircraft and Blackhawk helicopters.

creative commons

WASHINGTON (AP) - Three men have been charged after shots were fired at officers during a pursuit, prompting a brief lockdown of the U.S. Capitol and its office buildings.

Police said in a statement that Tuesday's event did not appear to be a targeted attack on police.

creative commons

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's advisory council on open records has argued that Gov. Terry McAuliffe shouldn't keep secret a list of felons whose voting rights are believed to have been restored.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council issued the opinion Tuesday, arguing that the list doesn't qualify as an executive working paper.

The list contains roughly 206,000 felons believed to meet the criteria of McAuliffe's rights restoration order.

delaware state court website

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A judge has overturned an arbitrator's rejection of a rent increase on residents of a Kent County mobile home park.

The judge ruled this week that Ciro Poppiti III erred last year in nixing a landlord's rent increase at Wild Meadows.

The judge sent the case back to Poppiti, a Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, saying he failed to address the required statutory criteria and denied the rent increase based on criteria not authorized by law.

official campaign photo

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe is expected to be named the next chairman of the National Governors Association.

The governor, a Democrat, announced Wednesday that he is traveling to Des Moines, Iowa, this week for the NGA's annual summer meeting.

The nonpartisan group advocates on behalf of the governors.

McAuliffe is the current vice-chairman of the group, and said he will spend his coming year as chairman promoting the need for states to address cybersecurity concerns.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Two contenders for Virginia governor are touting their fundraising totals ahead of a campaign finance filing deadline.

Democrat Ralph Northam, the current lieutenant governor, said Wednesday said he's raised more than $1 million in the first half of this year for the 2017 gubernatorial contest. Republican Ed Gillespie said his political action committee has raised more than $850,000 in the first half of 2016.

The filing deadline for the latest round of campaign finance reports is Friday.

creative commons

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A federal judge has dismissed several charges in a bank fraud case against Wilmington Trust and four former top executives, although prosecutors likely will try to reinstate the charges with different language.

Lewes Fire Department Facebook Page

Dozens of fire trucks, motorcycles and emergency vehicles came to honor their fellow fireman Tim McCalanahan with the Lewes Fire Department.

He was killed in a freak accident as he stepped onto the skid of a helicopter and fell to the ground during a training exercise at the Delaware Coastal Airport in Georgetown.

The procession stretched from the Wilmington state Medical Examiner’s Office to Lewes.

They left Wilmington at peak rush hour this morning with more emergency vehicles joining the procession.

Academy Website

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - The Delaware Military Academy is planning to build a new 27,000-square-foot dome on its campus.

The Wilmington News Journal reports the dome will be used to house an athletic complex and classrooms at the charter school near Newport.

The school's most recent annual report to the state Department of Education shows that it's looking to increase its student population from about 560 students to 750 students in the coming years.

Delmarvans should brace themselves for another heatwave.

Thursday and Friday should see temperatures in the mid-90’s with some above one hundred.

And the temperatures at night may only dip into the 80’s.

Officials are urging residents to take precautions especially those who are elderly or in poor health.

They should also drinking lots of water to keep hydrated and should stay indoors.

In addition, residents are warned not to keep pets outside.

mug shot

BALTIMORE (AP) - The defense has rested in the fourth trial of a Baltimore police officer in the death of Freddie Gray whose broken neck in police custody provoked riots last year.

Lawyers for Lt. Brian Rice asked a judge Tuesday to admit testimony from Officer William Porter's mistrial into evidence.

Attorney Michael Belsky said prosecutors deliberately didn't ask Porter on Monday about his role at the stops where Gray was arrested and Rice loaded him back in the van, depriving the defense of an opportunity to cross-examine him.

creative commons

SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - Police have charged a Salisbury woman they say struck her fiance with a frying pan.

The Daily Times of Salisbury  reports that authorities have arrested 32-year-old Kiesha Latasha Lee on charges including first-degree assault, reckless endangerment and use of a dangerous weapon with intent to injure.