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.

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Local News
8:41 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Starting School After Labor Day in Maryland

Comptroller Peter Franchot (D-Md)
Credit officiali photo

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Comptroller Peter Franchot is scheduled to announce results of a petition drive gauging support for starting Maryland public schools after Labor Day.

Franchot is scheduled to hold a news conference Thursday with Gov.-elect Larry Hogan, state Sen. James Mathias and Ocean City Mayor Richard Meehan.

A state task force recommended in May that schools delay opening until after Labor Day, while continuing to end by the current time in mid-June. The task force voted 11-4 in favor of the later start date.

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Local News
8:37 am
Thu January 15, 2015

DelDOT to Push Ahead with I-95 Bridge Repairs

Credit all-free-download.com

The Delaware Department of Transportation plans to accelerate the repair work on the I-95 bridge over the Brandywine in Wilmington.

Barry Benton with the bridge department told the Wilmington News Journal that the increased traffic from the I-495 has had its effect on the bridge decking.

The department expects work on the bridge to begin within the next two years.

It will involve replacement of the six-lane concrete deck and barrier walls as well as repairs for cracks in the concrete piers.

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Local News
8:27 am
Thu January 15, 2015

300,000 Virginians Sign Up for Health Insurance

Credit creative commons

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Federal officials say nearly 300,000 Virginians have signed up for the health insurance marketplace under the program's second open enrollment.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says 298,981 people signed up ahead of the deadline Thursday for coverage starting Feb. 1.

For those who missed the deadline, an open enrollment period will extend until Feb. 15. If that deadline is missed, the earliest coverage for those seeking it would be in 2016.

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Local News
8:24 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Adding Sexual Orientation to Hate Crime List in Virginia

State Senator Barbara Favola (D-Va)
Credit wikipedia

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A bill to add sexual orientation to the definition of hate crimes is dead in Virginia.

The Republican-controlled Senate Courts of Justice Committee killed the measure Wednesday at the state Capitol on a 7-7 vote.

The bill was introduced by Sen. Barbara Favola, an Arlington County Democrat. It would have added sexual orientation and gender identification to an existing state law requiring that hate crimes be reported to the State Police. The current law is limited to race, religion and ethnic origin.

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Local News
7:58 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Incidents Cause Delaware National Guard Air Base to Tighten Security

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Dover, Del. (AP) -- The Delaware National Guard has increased security at an air base after different vehicles approached its gate this week, then left.

A spokesman at New Castle Air National Guard Base in northern Delaware says that in at least some of the incidents, an individual asked for directions. In at least one case, a vehicle turned around before reaching the main gate.

Col. Len Gratteri says the activity is not uncommon, but there were five such incidents. That frequency is what prompted base officials to increase security.

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Local News
2:20 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Gov.-Elect Larry Hogan Commits to Bipartisanship

Gov.-Elect Larry Hogan (R-Md)
Credit campaign website

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov.-elect Larry Hogan and leading Maryland lawmakers are starting this year's legislative session by emphasizing bipartisanship.
 
Hogan, a Republican who takes office next week, spoke to both chambers of the Legislature on Wednesday as lawmakers convened for their annual 90-day session.
 
With a Legislature controlled by Democrats, Hogan says the only way problems will be solved is if the two parties sit down together and form bipartisan solutions.
 

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Local News
12:02 pm
Wed January 14, 2015

Labinal to Close Up Shop by the End of 2016 (Update)

Credit Labinal Power Systems website

Labinal Power Systems has announced it will be moving its operations in Salisbury to Denton, Texas next year.

In a statement issued by the company, the move will begin in May with the plant closing by the end of 2016.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that there will be more than 500 jobs lost.

Labinal provides electronics manufacturing services.

The statement said that the move is being made to be more competitive in the aerospace industry.

The company said the employees will get transition packages, job training support and other assistance.

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Local News
11:50 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Security Tightened at Delaware Air National Guard Base

Delaware Air National Guard Base
Credit Delaware Air National Guard website

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - The Delaware National Guard says it has increased security at an air base after its staff reported what might be suspicious activity nearby.
 
The guard said in a news release Wednesday that the activity was reported recently at the New Castle Air National Guard Base.
 
It says no specific threat has been identified. The guard says its measures to increase security are "simply a matter of procedure and increased vigilance."
 

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Local News
11:45 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Offshore Wind Farm Could Bring Thousands of Jobs to Virginia

Credit creative commons

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - A report issued by Oceana concludes the development of wind turbines off Virginia's coast would create thousands of jobs.
 
The oceans advocacy group issued a report Wednesday that compares offshore wind development vs. drilling for oil and gas in Atlantic waters. Oceana said the economic analysis found that wind development would produce twice the number of jobs and energy as oil and gas drilling.
 

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Local News
11:34 am
Wed January 14, 2015

MD Lawmaker to Author Right-To-Die Law

State Senator Ron Young (D-Frederick)
Credit msa.maryland.gov

FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - A Maryland state senator says he'll introduce a bill this year to make it legal for Maryland doctors to help terminally ill patients end their own lives.
 
The Frederick News-Post reported Wednesday that Democratic Sen. Ron Young's proposal would allow doctors to prescribe lethal doses of medication to adults who are within six months of death. The patients could then decide if they want to take the drugs.
 

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Local News
8:52 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Winter Weather Advisory Through 1 P.M.

Credit Don Rush

There’s a winter weather advisory through 1 p.m.

Today, there’s a 50 percent of snow and sleet otherwise expect highs in the upper 20’s with northwest winds of 5 to 10 mph.

Tonight, it should be mostly cloudy with the lows in the lower 20’s and north winds of 5 mph.

Tomorrow – Thursday – expect partly sunny skies with highes in the mid-30’s and west winds of around 5 mph.

Tomorrow night expect partly cloudy skies with lows in the mid 20’s and west winds of 5 to 10 mph.

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Local News
8:38 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Financial Mismanagement Leads to Shake Up at Delaware Charter School

Credit Family Foundations Charter School Website

The Family Foundations Academy charter school has fired two of its leaders and has handed over the reins to officials with the Eastside Charter School.

In addition, there was a reshuffling of its board.

All of this comes after accusations that the school’s co-leaders used school credit cards for more than $94-thousand in personal purchases.

The move is part of an effort to avoid the state shutting down the school.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the new school leaders say the finances and academics of the school are sound.

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Local News
8:24 am
Wed January 14, 2015

More Appointments by Gov.-Elect Larry Hogan

Governor-elect Larry Hogan (R-Md)
Credit change maryland

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov.-elect Larry Hogan has named Pete Rahn to be the head of the Maryland Department of Transportation.

Hogan, a Republican, made the announcement on Tuesday. He also announced several other senior-level appointments to his administration.

Rahn has led transportation departments in New Mexico and Missouri.

Road Tolls

Hogan also says he wants to take a look at lower road lolls in Maryland.

The toll rates are decided by the Maryland Transportation Authority.

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Local News
8:01 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Delay in Plans to Improve Schools by Christina Board of Education

Governor Jack Markell (D-De)
Credit official photo

There has been a delay by the Christina School Board in its final decision on its three priorities.

Last night the school board said it wanted to allow the communities to have time to study a new compromise plan that is the result of discussions between the district and state officials.

The delay means that the months-long debate will continue on the board between those who want to compromise with the state and those who want to make a stand.

At issue is how best to turn around the schools that serve some of worst neighborhoods in Wilmington.

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Local News
7:57 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Virginia Governor Kicks Off Legislative Session

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe
Credit official campaign photo

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Lawmakers are returning to Richmond to kick off their 2015 session and to hear Gov. Terry McAuliffe's State of the Commonwealth speech.

Entering his second term in office, Democrat McAuliffe will be seeking to make his mark on a General Assembly that's now firmly in control of Republicans following the surprise resignation of a Democratic senator last summer. He delivers his second Commonwealth address Wednesday night.

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Local News
7:48 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Attys Request Conditional Pardon for Autistic Inmate in Virginia

Credit delaware state courts website

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Lawyers for a Virginia inmate with autism and an IQ of 69 have asked Gov. Terry McAuliffe to grant a conditional pardon so their client can get treatment.

Reginald Latson of Stafford County was sentenced last week to six months in jail for assaulting a correctional officer, one of three clashes he has had with law enforcement since 2010. He's been jailed twice and held for long periods in solitary confinement. The 23-year-old Latson's supporters attribute the incidents to an autism-related "fight or flight" reflex.

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Local News
7:45 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Delaware Considers Easing Liquor License Requirements

Credit creative commons

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A state House committee is set to consider a bill easing Delaware's laws on restaurants serving alcohol.

Under the current law, a restaurant must have seating for at least 35 people in order to be eligible for a license to sell beer, wine or liquor.

The legislation to be discussed Wednesday changes the definition of restaurants eligible for liquor licenses to include establishments that serve complete meals and provide seating for at least 12 people, not 35.

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Local News
10:21 am
Tue January 13, 2015

McDonnell Attys Ask Bail While on Appeal

Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell
Credit wikipedia.org

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Lawyers say the appeal of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's corruption convictions could take almost as long as his two-year prison sentence itself.

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Local News
8:58 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Smoking Restrictions on OC Beach and Boardwalk This Summer

Ocean City Boardwalk
Credit Don Rush

Smoking restrictions will hit the beach and Boardwalk in Ocean City come May 1st.

And they will include electronic cigarettes.

Some council members favored an outright ban but the council eventually decided to go with a proposal that would carve out smoking areas on the beach and the Boardwalk with entry platforms.

This would still allow for the estimated 17 percent of tourists who smoke to light up.

The new smoking restrictions will rely on self-policing and there is no expectation that anyone will go to jail for smoking on the Boardwalk.

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Local News
8:55 am
Tue January 13, 2015

School District Moves to Include LGBT in Health Textbooks

Credit gay rights symbol

An Indian River School District committee has decided that its high school health curriculum should include the definitions of sexual orientation and gender roles.

Those would include the LGBT community. 

In September board member Shaun Fink opposed the inclusion of such terms in the HealthSmart books bought by the district.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that while Fink never said so during public meetings he has said that as a Christian he has issues with teaching children that it is OK to be gay.

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Local News
8:46 am
Tue January 13, 2015

More Appointments Expected From MD Governor-Elect

Governor-Elected Larry Hogan
Credit creative commons

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov.-elect Larry Hogan is announcing more cabinet appointments.

Hogan has scheduled a Tuesday news conference in Annapolis. He also will be announcing some senior advisers.

Hogan already has named a number of his cabinet secretaries, but some key jobs remain to be announced. They include budget secretary and transportation secretary.

Hogan, a Republican, will be inaugurated next week in Annapolis.

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Local News
8:43 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Revenue Up in Virginia

Credit Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - December general fund revenues brightened considerably for Virginia.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's office announced Monday that revenues increased 13.1 percent last month from the previous year. The growth was primarily in payroll withholding and an extra deposit day, among other factors.

On a fiscal year-to-date basis, total revenue collections rose 6.8 percent. That's better than the revised annual forecast.

McAuliffe called the December numbers a strong showing. He said it signals gradual improvement to the state's economy.

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Local News
8:41 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Judge Turns Down Latest Bid by All-Girls School to Stay Open

Credit Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A federal judge has refused to issue an injunction sought by struggling all-girls charter school in New Castle trying to stave off a second state-ordered closure.

The judge ruled Monday that attorneys for Reach Academy have not shown that they are likely to succeed on any legal claims against the Delaware Department of Education and are therefore not entitled to a preliminary injunction.

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Local News
8:39 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Crisfield Police Crackdown on Gang Activity

Credit creative commons

More than 100 officers joined the Crisfield Police Department Sunday morning and descended on the small town raiding nine locations aimed at shutting down gang activity.

WBOC reports that for months authorities hunted several suspects connected to the Tree Top Piru gang for crimes in the city.

Crisfield Police Chief Michael Tabor said his department had dismantled the gang and assured residents that they were safe.

He said that 18 bags of heroin, 10 bags of cocaine and more than $22-hundred in cash were recovered.

He said no guns were found.

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Local News
8:32 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Dover to Add 10 More Officers to Police Force

Credit Dover police department website

Ten more officers will be added to Dover’s police force.

The Dover city council voted 7-to-1 to spend a more than a million dollars with another $4 million over the next five fiscal years.

This will bring the total number of officers on the force to 102.

But it is not clear where the funding will come from.

Dover Police Chief Paul Bernat that the request comes in the face of a recent increase in violent crime that hit Delaware’s capital last year.

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Local News
8:25 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Delaware AG Calls for Bill Aimed at Young Offenders and Guns

Credit creative commons

Delaware’s new attorney general Matt Denn wants to guarantee prison time for young repeat offenders who are caught with a gun.

The legislation would ensure jail time even if the first felony occurred when the perpetrator was 16 or 17 years old.

Under current law a juvenile’s conviction for a violent crime cannot not be counted once he or she reaches adulthood.

Sentencing ranges from one to 10 years for the possession of a firearm by felons but does not currently count crimes committee as a teenager.

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Local News
8:18 am
Tue January 13, 2015

Former Attorney General Beau Biden Joins Law Firm

Former Attorney General Beau Biden
Credit official photo

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Delaware's former attorney general, Beau Biden, is joining the law firm of Grant and Eisenhofer.

The firm announced Monday that Biden has joined the firm.

The firm's office in Wilmington is headed by Stuart Grant, who served as Biden's finance chair during previous political campaigns.

Biden, whose father is Vice President Joe Biden, served as Delaware's 44th attorney general in 2006. The Democrat announced last year he would not seek re-election to a third term. Lt. Gov. Matt Denn won election to the seat in November.

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Local News
3:31 pm
Mon January 12, 2015

NASA Finds Cause of Sounding Rocket Failure at Wallops

Sounding Rocket
Credit Wallops Flight Facility Website

WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. (AP) - NASA says the incorrect installation of equipment caused the launch of a sounding rocket on Virginia's Eastern Shore to end prematurely.
 
The agency said Monday that an investigation shows the failure of the July 2014 launch was linked to the installation process for the second stage igniter.
 
The Terrier-Improved Malemute ended its flight about 19 seconds after it was launched from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility when a flight anomaly was detected.
 

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Local News
11:41 am
Mon January 12, 2015

Bus Fares Going Up in Delaware

Credit Delaware Transit

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Bus fares are increasing in Delaware starting in about a week.
 
The Wilmington News Journal reports bus fares statewide will increase from $1.50 to $1.75 per trip starting Jan. 18.
 
The hike is the second phase of a three-phase plan to increase fares by 74 percent over three years. Next year, fixed-route bus fares will go up to $2.00
 

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Local News
11:29 am
Mon January 12, 2015

Some Virginia Gas Prices Below $2.00, Maryland Prices Decline

Credit Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Average gas prices in several Virginia cities are down more than a dollar a gallon from a year ago.
 
AAA Mid-Atlantic says average prices in Roanoke and Richmond have fallen below $2 per gallon.

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