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.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Leaders of a Maryland Senate panel that steers state spending say recent changes to the state budget are something the whole General Assembly can support.

Sen. Richard Madaleno, the panel's vice chairman, told a cheering crowd in Annapolis Monday that he expected unanimous votes in both chambers for changes to add more funding to education and to restore a 2-percent cost-of-living adjustment for state employees.

Panel chairman Sen. Edward Kasemeyer said he felt confident Republican Gov. Larry Hogan would also support the changes.

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BETHESDA, Md. (AP) - Doctors say an American health care worker who contracted Ebola while volunteering in a Sierra Leone treatment unit is now in critical condition at the National Institutes of Health.

The agency says the patient's status was changed Monday from serious condition to critical condition, meaning the person's condition has apparently worsened. The patient is being treated at the National Institutes of Health's hospital near Washington.


Mayor Jim Ireton unveiled his 5 year $63.6 million spending plan on capital improvements for Salisbury.

The biggest expenditure is $4.1 million for the “Main Street Masterplan” that would renovate a number of structures along East Main Street in the downtown area.

The money would come from a number sources including from the town’s water and sewer revolving fund and bond sales.

In addition, the Salisbury Daily Times reports that it will also include investment in new police vehicles and residential paving.

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A recent oil spill, say environmentalists, could be a warning signing for the town of New Castle.

Work crews are cleaning up the last of a spill from Battery Park after a cargo ship dumped 100 gallons into the Delaware River.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the oil came from the barge Wild Cosmos on March 9th at the Port of Wilmington.

The paper reports that tar balls have been discovered as far north as Salem County, New Jersey.

Around 15-hundred feet of shore at New Castle has already been affected.

Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has voted in favor of a bill restoring voting rights to ex-felons immediately after their release from prison.

The vote for the bill was 29-18. It was spearheaded by Sen. Joan Carter Conway, D-Baltimore City.

Under current election law, someone convicted of a felony in Maryland cannot register to vote until they have completed their punishment- which includes prison time, probation and parole.

Conway's bill would make it legal for someone to register as soon as they have been released from prison.

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In Easton the Talbot Interfaith Shelter can use an old bed and breakfast on Goldsboro Street in Easton.

A judge says that the property that once housed Easton’s Promise bed and breakfast can be the site for taking care of the homeless.

Neighbors have raised questions about the year round shelter seeking to close it down after it was given permission last July to provide shelter to the homeless.

It now becomes the first full time shelter in Talbot County.

Previously the homeless were given shelter during the cold winter months at the various local churches.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed a new law that reins in the use of seclusion and restraint as methods of controlling children in public schools.

McAuliffe signed legislation Monday requiring the state Board of Education to develop regulations governing the use of the techniques across Virginia's 134 school divisions, according to the governor's spokesman.

The legislation had broad support from both chambers of the General Assembly.

PIKESVILLE, Md. (AP) - Vice President Joe Biden says $41 million in federal funds approved by Congress will help clear rape kit backlogs across the country and solve crimes.

Along with Sen. Barbara Mikulski, Biden toured a Maryland State Police forensic laboratory in Pikesville on Monday and addressed the importance of clearing the backlog of an estimated 400,000 rape kits that remain untested throughout the U.S.

Biden said the federal funding will help local and state law enforcement agencies test the kits and train personnel.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Richmond mayor and ex-convict Leonidas Young is running to replace a Virginia lawmaker who was jailed after a sex scandal involving a teenager.

Young said he will announce his candidacy Tuesday for the House of Delegates seat occupied by Del. Joseph Morrissey.

The ordained Baptist minister was convicted on fraud charges in 1999. He served as Richmond mayor from 1994 through June 1996.

Young said Morrissey has supported his efforts to return to public office. His announcement will take place at Morrissey's law office.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The Maryland Department of the Environment says it's temporarily allowing watermen to harvest oysters and clams in the Kent Island Narrows, a waterway that is usually closed to shellfish harvesting.

The change is effective Monday and will continue through the end of the oyster season on March 31.

The Narrows is a channel between Kent Island and the Delmarva Peninsula. During most years, a high volume of boat traffic and marina activity creates the potential to degrade shellfish water quality, so harvesting is prohibited.

Pocomoke City Website

Pocomoke City Manager Russell Blake has been in office for 40 years.

But, he has decided that it’s time to retire.

Blake has served as the city administrator the longest number of years not only for the town but perhaps in the nation.

There have been a number of major changes in the town since he first took office back in 1975.

These range from the revitalization of downtown and new waterfront docks to a major development of retail businesses along Route 13 and a new industrial park.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A young woman at the center of two criminal cases involving a Virginia lawmaker has given birth to a baby.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Del. Joseph Morrissey on Sunday confirmed the birth of a 7-pound, 8-ounce boy. Morrissey told the newspaper he wouldn't make any further comment.

The newspaper says no information has been released regarding the child's father.

Don Rush

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - The panel that sets Delaware's official revenue forecast is meeting for the first time this year to update its projections.

Monday's meeting of the Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council follows a series of agency budget hearings over the past several weeks by the legislature's budget writing committee.

The full General Assembly reconvenes Tuesday after taking time off for the budget committee hearings.

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The decisions did not seem controversial but the Dewey Beach Town Council got some flak from local residents during a Saturday morning meeting.

Mayor Diane Hanson recently signed a contingency contract to buy two pieces of land along coastal highway adjacent to the city hall.

But some homeowners said they were not happy with the use of public funds without a public hearing after an article appeared in the Cape Gazette.

WASHINGTON (AP) - A state delegate who represents parts of Prince George's and Anne Arundel counties is the latest candidate to announce a bid for Congress in Maryland's 4th District.

Democratic Delegate Joseline Pena-Melnyk told The Associated Press in an email on Sunday that she plans to run for the seat being vacated by Rep. Donna Edwards. A formal announcement is expected on Tuesday.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Some state agencies in Delaware fail to comply with requirements for identifying their Freedom of Information Act coordinators and tracking FOIA requests.

An Associated Press review of state agency FOIA logs shows significant differences in the amount of detail they include, and several agencies didn't meet a statutory deadline of 15 business days to respond to or at least acknowledge requests for the logs.

A 2012 law also requires each agency to identify a FOIA coordinator on its website, but some still do not.

PSEG Nuclear website

There’s a proposal to streamline some reporting requirements for the nuclear Salem/Hope nuclear power plant across the Delaware Bay that it says are duplications.

But, the Wilmington News Journal reports that it’s drawn sharp criticism from a conservation group and an inquiry by the federal government.

The PSEG Nuclear proposal would end notifying federal officials of fish kills and alterations in the cooling water intakes for the facility.

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PIKESVILLE, Md. (AP) - Vice President Joe Biden will join Senator Barbara Mikulski in Pikesville to highlight funding directed toward clearing a backlog of hundreds of thousands of untested rape kits.

Biden and Mikulski will meet at the Maryland State Police Forensic Science Laboratory Monday and discuss a $41 million fund earmarked in the federal spending budget for reducing rape kit backlogs.

The funding will go toward testing current kits, avoiding future backlogs and providing training and personnel.

Don Rush

MIDDLETOWN, Del. (AP) - Delaware state police say a man's body has washed ashore at Augustine Beach.

Police say a person walking along the beach spotted the body on Sunday afternoon. State troopers and New Castle County paramedics were called to the scene.

Police say an autopsy will be conducted in an attempt to determine the cause and manner of death and to identify the man.

Augustine Beach is on Delaware Bay in the Middletown area.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Coast Guard says its response crews rescued a man after his sailboat capsized in Duvall Creek in Annapolis.

The Coast Guard says the man called 911 around 10:15 a.m. to report that his boat had capsized. Local police got in touch with Coast Guard Sector Baltimore. A response boat that was already on the water as part of a training exercise was diverted to the scene.

Crews pulled the man from the water and took him to an Anne Arundel County fire boat that took him to shore. He wasn't injured. The Coast Guard towed the sailboat to a marina.

Essay: Free Air?

Mar 13, 2015

The air is free. Or is it? Delmarva Public Radio Essayist George Merrill writes that the free market system always seems to find a way.

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BETHESDA, Md. (AP) - The National Institutes of Health says an American healthcare worker who contracted Ebola while volunteering in a Sierra Leone treatment unit has arrived safely at its hospital in Maryland.

The NIH says the patient arrived at the hospital in Bethesda, north of Washington, before 5 a.m. Friday and the patient's condition is still being evaluated. The patient's name, age and gender have not been released.

Officials say the patient was transported to the United States in isolation on a chartered plane.


Former Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown says he is going to run for a seat on congress after his defeat by Republican Governor Larry Hogan in last year’s November elections.

The Maryland Democrat will seek Representative Donna Edwards’ seat who has decided to run for U.S. Senate now that Barbara Mikulski has announced her retirement next year.

Brown said that he believed he still had something to give to back to his community.

The district sits next to Washington D.C. and includes a portion of Anne Arundel and Prince George’s counties.

Kappa Sigma Fraternity symbol

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (AP) - The University of Maryland and Kappa Sigma fraternity say they're investigating an email sent by a student laced with racist and sexist language.

Kappa Sigma fraternity says in a statement posted on its website Friday that the student was a member of the University of Maryland chapter when he sent the email to six others in January 2014. The fraternity says it only recently learned of the email and has suspended the student. Kappa Sigma says the student has since resigned, and its Maryland chapter is working to formally expel him. 

Don Rush

There was a public signing yesterday of a 30-foot-long 1,000 pound steel beam on the campus of Salisbury University.

It will be put on the top floor of the new 122-thousand square-foot building that will be the Patricia R. Guerrieri Academic Commons.

Salisbury University President Janet Dudley-Eshbach told those gathered in Red Square that this was a celebration of a building that will benefit not only the campus but the community.


Mayor Jim Ireton gave his State of the City address yesterday.

And, he stressed the need to attack the city blight saying that property owners need to be held accountable.

In his "broken windows" approach, Ireton pushed an initiative to place QR codes on signs in front of abandoned buildings that would link to online sites providing details about the property’s history and current status.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The Division of Fish & Wildlife says hunters harvested more than 14,000 deer during the 2014-2015 season.

Officials said Wednesday that the count is the fourth all-time highest in the state.

Hunters harvested more does than bucks, with 7,683 does and 6,556 bucks.

More than 1,100 deer were taken during crossbow season.

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Delaware Education Secretary Mark Murphy and the state Board of Education got a no confidence vote from teachers unions in the two biggest school districts.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the Red Clay Education Association and the Christina Education Association say that state leaders have “slandered” Delaware’s traditional public schools.

The paper reports that they charged the administration has done this through the over reliance on standardized test scores and imposing mandates on teacher without their input.

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There’s a lot of testing going on in Delaware schools to evaluate how the educational system is doing.

But Education Secretary Mark Murphy says the state will provide money to see if there is some redundancy that could lead to the elimination of some of those tests.

He said that some of the assessment tests may wind up trying to measure the same thing.

Outside of the tests required by the state or federal government, Murphy said that individual districts would be able to determine what redundant tests might be eliminated.

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Virginia's congressional delegation says the Navy has agreed to homeport its newest aircraft carrier in Norfolk.

The USS Gerald R. Ford is under construction in Newport News. It is the numerical replacement for the USS Enterprise, which was also based in Norfolk. The Ford is expected to join the fleet in 2016, bringing the total number of U.S. aircraft carriers back up to 11.