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.

prison bureau website

An officer at the Sussex County Correctional Institution was struck by an inmate this past Monday.

The Delaware Department of Correction said that it did not believe the officer was seriously injured.

The Correctional Officers Association of Delaware said that the inmate had been escorted back to his cell after being disruptive during the dinner meal.

They said it was there that the inmate charged and threw a punch hitting the officer on the side of his neck.

The prisoner was charged with assault.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has approved requiring local school boards to report data on specialized intervention services to help children with learning disabilities early in schools.

The Senate voted 46-0 for the bill Wednesday.

It would require local boards to annually report data to the State Department of Education and the General Assembly from kindergarten through third grade, starting in the 2018-2019 school year.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A crime-victim advocacy group is supporting a bill in the Maryland General Assembly aimed at making automated notifications to victims more accurate and timely.

Russell Butler of the Maryland Crime Victims' Resource Center said Wednesday the bill reflects frustration with a system that does not meet voluntary standards developed by the U.S. Justice Department.

The bill would require the state to study the effectiveness of its system and consider adopting the Justice Department standards.

Chemours website

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Chemours, the former performance chemicals unit of Dupont, says it posted a net loss of $230 million in the fourth quarter of 2016 but eked out a slight profit for the year.

The company on Wednesday said fourth-quarter results included a $335 million charge to settle thousands of lawsuits claiming that the release of a chemical used in Teflon production from a DuPont plant in West Virginia several years ago contaminated drinking water and caused illnesses, including cancer.

Mug Shots

BALTIMORE (AP) - A Baltimore school police officer caught on video slapping and kicking a teen at a school while another officer stood by has accepted a plea deal.
News media outlets report Anthony Spence entered an Alford plea on Tuesday to a second-degree assault charge, not admitting guilt, but acknowledging prosecutors have enough evidence to convict.
Instead of facing jail time, Spence will get probation before judgment and 18 months of supervised probation. He must also resign from the school police force within 90 days.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - After seeing disruptions at town hall meetings held by his fellow Republicans, Rep. Andy Harris says he's moving to virtual town halls.

The Cockeysville Republican said Tuesday during WBAL-AM's "The C4 Show" that he doesn't put stock in angry crowds at the meetings, blaming an organized group that opposes President Donald Trump and "wants to cause trouble."

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Somerset County Commissioners wants Governor Larry Hogan to include money for tuition so that local students can go to Wor-Wic Community College tuition free.

County Administrator Doug Taylor told the Salisbury Daily Times that the county’s students are behind the average for residents with college degrees.

Only 19 percent of Somerset County residents have a college degree compared with Wicomico and Worcester counties where the percent is in the upper 30’s.

House of Representatives

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Delaware Gov. John Carney has settled on two retired judges to lead an independent review of an uprising at a prison where four Department of Correction staffers were held hostage and one was killed.

Carney announced Tuesday that retired Delaware Supreme Court Justice Henry duPont Ridgely and retired Family Court Judge William Chapman Jr. will lead the review. It will begin after state police complete an investigation into Lt. Steven Floyd's death.

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It was a close vote – 4-to-3.

But in the end the Christina School Board decided against declaring itself a safe haven or sanctuary for students who are undocumented immigrants.

Board members had questions about its legality as well as whether it would conflict with other district policies by denying immigration officials from access to student.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that that John Young who authored the measure was visibly upset at the outcome of the vote.

The minority caucuses in Maryland General Assembly say they are backing a measure that would limit the state’s cooperation with deportation authorities.

This is the first time that the Latino, black and Asian American Pacific Islands caucuses have banded together for a new law.

The measure would forbid keeping undocumented immigrants longer than local guidelines despite a request from federal authorities.


ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Annapolis City Council has passed legislation aimed at protecting people from discrimination based on immigration status.

The Capital reports that the bill passed Monday night with six votes. Mayor Mike Pantelides and Alderman Fred Paone, both Republicans, voted against the measure. Alderwoman Rhonda Pindell Charles, a Democrat, abstained.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The son of Henrietta Lacks is seeking compensation for the unauthorized use of his mother's cells in scientific research since her 1951 death, as detailed in a best-selling book.

The Baltimore Sun reports that Lawrence Lacks, his son and daughter-in-law say they plan to file a lawsuit against Johns Hopkins University in coming weeks.

Historical Painting

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) - William & Mary is investigating the defacement of a Thomas Jefferson statue at the school after someone painted the hands red and wrote "slave owner" nearby.

University spokeswoman Suzanne Seurattan wrote in an email Tuesday that the school is determining how to remove the paint without leaving damage. The statue is near the heart of the Williamsburg campus.

Seurattan wrote that the school encourages civil discourse but that "it is never acceptable to deface property."

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NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - Health officials in Delaware say a surge in fentanyl-related overdose deaths drove the state's overall overdose deaths past 300 last year.

In a statement released Tuesday, the Division of Forensic Science said it confirmed the presence of fentanyl, a synthetic painkiller up to 50 times more potent than heroin, in more than a third of the 308 overdoses in Delaware in 2016. Officials say 228 people died from overdoses in Delaware in 2015.

Wilmington City Seal

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - A member of the Wilmington City Council is trying to bring prayer back to the council's meetings.

Media outlets report the council voted Jan. 3 to get rid of a prayer that had been used for decades to start meetings.

City Councilman Samuel Guy announced online that he plans to sponsor a resolution on Thursday to bring prayer back "because that helps keep the devil out." The bill already has five co-sponsors and just needs one more vote for it to pass.

Don Rush

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - A project will soon get underway to better protect a stretch of Norfolk shoreline from storm damage.

WAVY-TV reports that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will start the $34.5 million project this month. The Corps will put 1.2 million cubic yards of sand along 7.3 miles.

The section of beach goes from the Willoughby Spit near the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel to an area near Little Creek Inlet. The Corps says this largely residential area sits "virtually unprotected."

Revenues Up in Virginia

Feb 15, 2017
governor's office

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia tax revenues surged last month, but Gov. Terry McAuliffe cautioned against assuming that the state's recent revenue swoon is over.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports McAuliffe announced Monday that revenues rose 7.4 percent in January over the previous January. He also says collections for the first seven months of the fiscal year are up 4.6 percent and ahead of the annual forecast revised in the face of last year's shortfall.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Fearful of President Donald Trump's policies, the Maryland General Assembly is poised to empower the state's Democratic attorney general to sue the federal government without permission from the state's Republican governor.

The House of Delegates is expected to make a final vote Wednesday on the joint resolution already approved by the Senate.


Seventeen members of the staff at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center have quit in the wake of the inmate standoff that left one officer dead.

The Delaware Department of Corrections told the Wilmington News Journal that 8 have already quit with three leaving immediately.

Another six have asked for early retirement this year.

The department said one of those has already left.

Finally, a teacher employed by the facility is also retiring.

Don Rush

Governor Larry Hogan announced yesterday that the state will invest $1 million for the revitalization of downtown Salisbury.

Mayor Jake Day hailed the money as marking a real partnership between state and local government.

He said, “The most important announcement said, ‘I’m a partner. I’m invested from this point forward.’ We’re going to see fruition of this project within three years. And I believe we have a partner all the way through, from beginning to end.”

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's Supreme Court has upheld the court-ordered sale of a successful New York-based translation company after a judge concluded the relationship between the company's two co-founders and sole directors had devolved into "complete dysfunction."

In a 4-1 ruling Monday, the justices affirmed a Chancery Court ruling ordering the sale of TransPerfect Global, which provides translation, website localization, and other services, with offices in more than 90 cities worldwide.

SALISBURY, Md. (AP) - Maryland State Police have charged two men with murder in a Salisbury shooting that left a man dead and his mother injured.

The agency said in a news release Monday that Keone Davi and Da'Quawn Waters, both 18, were arrested Friday. Troopers say they are charged with first- and second-degree murder in the death of 31-year-old James Edward Joyce.

Police say Joyce and his mother, 56-year-old Hilda Barkley, were found shot in their apartment on Dec. 26. Joyce died on the way to a hospital and his mother was treated for two gunshot wounds.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A measure before Maryland lawmakers would end the requirement for the governor to approve parole for someone serving a life sentence, after the Maryland Parole Commission has recommended the person be paroled.

Supporters are holding a news conference on Tuesday to talk about the bill. The American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland and the Maryland Restorative Justice Initiative are supporting the measure.

Chesapeake Bay Program website

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has approved a two-season moratorium on fishing for cownose rays in contests, pending a study by a state agency.

The Senate voted 46-0 on Monday night for the moratorium.

Legislation initially called for a ban. Animal rights organizations, including the Humane Society and the Save the Rays coalition, say the contests are inhumane and harmful to the environment.

HAVRE DE GRACE, Md. (AP) - Maryland State Police say two tractor-trailers overturned on the Millard Tydings Memorial Bridge, likely because of high winds.

Media outlets report that it happened late Sunday on the bridge that carries Interstate 95 over the Susquehanna River.

Officials say one driver was trapped for a time and was taken to a hospital with minor injuries.

Police say winds were averaging about 12 mph at the time, but both trucks were full-sized tractor trailers that were empty.

virginia aquarium marin science center

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - A third dead humpback whale has been spotted in the Hampton Roads area this month.

Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center spokesman Matt Klepeisz says a male juvenile humpback whale came ashore on Virginia Beach either Saturday night or Sunday morning.

Aquarium stranding team coordinator Alex Costidis tells The Virginian-Pilot that the 30-foot-long whale had three large wounds that were probably caused by propellers. He estimated the whale was 2 to 4 years old and weighed 13,000 to 16,000 pounds.


A Syrian refugee family of three arrived in Delaware over the weekend without great fanfare as the country has been rocked by protests in the battle over the president’s refugee ban.

The family consists of a father who is a computer engineer, a mother and a months old child.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that they arrived at the Philadelphia International Airport late Friday night and was met by a small group of people who have helped them settle in the First State.

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BRIDGEVILLE, Del. (AP) - Organizers are planning to hold a Delaware pumpkin-launching competition this year despite the withdrawal of the Science Channel after a 2016 accident.

Frank Payton is president of the World Championship Punkin Chunkin Association. Payton said Saturday that the Science Channel has said it won't return this year, leaving the event without a major source of funding. The Science Channel had previously chronicled the three-day Sussex County tradition.

If you’re a smoker South Bethany Beach is considering banning the habit from its beaches and their walkways.

Council member Frank Weisgerber has sponsored a measure and noted that the town is the last coastal resort to still allow smoking on the shore.

He told WBOC that when Ocean City put the ban into effect including their boardwalks it was time to act.

A survey that was sent out to the town’s homeowners came back with a 72 percent approval of the ban.

The first reading for the ordnance is set to take place at Friday’s council meeting.


The family of a North Carolina driver is mourning his death after his vehicle plunged into the mouth the Chesapeake Bay from the Bay Bridge-Tunnel.

Authorities say the tractor-trailer of 47 year old Joseph Chen’s veered off the bridge last week.

He died after being airlifted to safety by a Navy helicopter.

Chen’s stepson Chris Moore told the Salisbury Daily Times that his father “…never met a stranger…that he always had a smile on his face.”