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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WASHINGTON (AP) - Civil rights groups filed a federal complaint against the Baltimore Police Department's use of a portable technology that mimics cell towers to locate suspects and their cell phones.

A complaint filed Tuesday with the Federal Communications Commission in Washington says the Baltimore Police Department's use of the cellphone tracking "stingray" devices interferes with emergency calls and is racially discriminatory.

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SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) - Police in Maryland say a seventh body has been found in the debris of an explosion and fire in an apartment complex.
Montgomery County Police said in a news release that the body was found Tuesday in one of the buildings.
The explosion on Aug. 10 in Silver Spring sent debris hundreds of feet, and people more than a mile away reported the blast was strong enough to shake their homes. More than 30 people were injured, including three firefighters.

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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Regulators say they need to get a firmer handle on how many horseshoe crabs die as part of their harvest for biomedical use.

The crabs are harvested for their blue blood, which is used to make sure medical products aren't contaminated. Their blood contains coagulogen, a chemical that can be used to detect bacteria.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission voted this month to propose taking into account the death toll associated with medical harvesting when determining how many horseshoe crabs can be harvested from the Delaware Bay.

The Delaware City Refinery could pay up to $20-thousand in fines for 6 tons of sulfur dioxide emissions two years ago and nearly 16 tons of other chemicals last year.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that state regulators decided to issue a single notice of violation for the two incidents.

The Delaware Natural Resources and Environmental Control will now figure out just how large the fines will be against PBF which owns the facility.

Showell Elementary School website

The Worcester County Board of Education gave its approval yesterday to design a $35.8 million replacement for the Showell Elementary School.

The vote was unanimous.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that construction of the 99-thousand square foot structure is expected to begin in 2019.

There will be two committees made up of teachers, parents and school officials as well as County Commissioners to come up with a plan.

The Becker Morgan Group will move ahead with the next phase of the planning and construction is to be completed by July of 2021.

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CUMBERLAND, Md. (AP) – There will be no trial in a legal dispute over the Ten Commandments in Western Maryland. The plaintiff has withdrawn his lawsuit.

Jeffrey Davis of Swanton voluntarily dropped the matter without explanation in a letter filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore. He declined to explain his decision when reached by telephone Tuesday.

Maryland Association of Counties website

OCEAN CITY, Md. (AP) - An annual conference of Maryland counties is taking place in Ocean City this week.

The Maryland Association of Counties summer conference begins Wednesday.

The conference is focusing on technology trends in county government. That includes protecting financial data, employee telecommuting, e-commerce and other economic development measures.

An estimated 2,000 local government officials, state legislators and business representatives are scheduled to attend.

The conference is set to end Saturday with an address from Gov. Larry Hogan.

U.S. Army

FREDERICK, Md. (AP) - A federal judge has dismissed a $750 million class-action lawsuit alleging the Army's reckless handling of chemical and biological toxins caused death and illness among people living near Fort Detrick in Frederick.

The Frederick News-Post reports that U.S. District Judge Catherine Blake filed the dismissal notice Thursday in Baltimore.

She ruled that the plaintiffs had not met a threshold requirement of proving the Army lacked discretion over how to dispose of hazardous waste.

University of Virginia website

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) - University of Virginia Rector William H. Goodwin has appointed a committee to review the school's disputed $2.2 billion Strategic Investment Fund

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Goodwin said Monday that he welcomed scrutiny of the fund, which he thinks has been unfairly criticized.

Former rector Helen Dragas characterized the $2.3 billion fund as a "slush fund" in a column in The Washington Post. UVA says the fund is not connected to tuition or public funding.

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SABILLASVILLE, Md. (AP) - The Maryland state workers union says staff vacancies are creating dangerous conditions at the Department of Juvenile Services.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is holding an event Wednesday to highlight what it calls "an acute employee shortage" at the Victor Cullen Center in Sabillasville (sah-BIL'-us-vil).

The facility in northern Frederick County is a high-security commitment center for boys.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) – Three Lower Eastern Shore medical marijuana companies made it through the first step as the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission names 15 growers and 15 process who could be licensed to grow and process medical marijuana.

They must win final approval after background checks. Nearly half of them were selected to be both growers and processors.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that in Worcester County a grower Shore Natural RX LLC and a processor Blair Wellness Center LLC were selected.

MAC Inc logo

The senior organization MAC Incorporated has a new executive director.

She is Pattie Tingle who will come on board October 1st.

Tingle succeeds Barbara "Peggy" Bradford who has served as executive director for the last 37 years.

Tingle served as executive director of the Bay Area Center for Independent Living in Salisbury for the last 26 years.  

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that Tingle tripled the size of the operation in the past two years helping some 43-hundred individuals with disabilities on the Eastern Shore.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's attorney general says he will not appeal a state Supreme Court decision declaring the state's death penalty law unconstitutional, but that he believes the ruling cannot be applied retroactively to the 13 men currently on death row.

In a statement Monday, Democratic Attorney General Matt Denn's office said he has decided not to appeal the Aug. 2 decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Were four conservative justices "scared" to side against Republican leaders in the court's recent opinion on felon voting rights? Gov. Terry McAuliffe thinks so.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that McAuliffe blasted last month's 4-3 Supreme Court of Virginia ruling Monday during an appearance on a WIQO-FM radio show.

The court ruled the governor overstepped his authority when he restored the voting rights of 13,000 felons who had been stripped from the voter rolls.

The heat is on.

The National Weather Service has extended its excessive heat warning through tomorrow night.

Highs are expected to hit above 90 degrees with overnight temperatures registering in the mid 70’s.

The heat index in Delaware would reach as high at 108.

There have been a number of heat waves in the First State this year.

Residents are advised to be cautious and stay inside where it is cool.

Those who do have to work outside should take frequent breaks and seek shade when possible.

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SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) - Police now say they expect additional fatalities from an explosion and fire in Maryland that has already left two people dead and a number of people unaccounted for.

At a news conference Friday, Montgomery County Assistant Police Chief Russ Hamill said he believes additional bodies will be found in the debris of an apartment building in Silver Spring. But he declined to speculate on how many people remain missing; fire officials on Thursday had initially said five to seven people were unaccounted for.

Don Rush

AAA Mid-Atlantic said Friday in a weekly report that the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gas in Maryland was $2.07, down from $2.08 a week ago.

The price of gas in the state is 6 cents less than the national average.

The average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gas in cities around the state includes $2.03 in Baltimore, $2.20 in Cumberland, $2.14 in Hagerstown and $1.95 in Salisbury.

Motorists in the state are paying 50 cents less per gallon than at this time last year when the average price of a gallon of regular gas was $2.57 per gallon.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Authorities say 12 people have been arrested while protesting a police conference in Baltimore.

Dozens of protesters gathered Sunday outside a hotel, where the Maryland Fraternal Order of Police is holding its biennial conference this week.

The Baltimore Police Department said in a statement that several of the protesters entered the hotel, chained themselves to a railing and blocked the escalator. Police say the protesters were arrested and charged with trespassing after refusing to leave.

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A person who jumped off the pier in Ocean City was taken to the Peninsula Regional Medical Center.

The Ocean City Fire Department reports that a person dove off the pier into the water and hit their head on Saturday night around 5:30 p.m.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the Facebook post by the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 4269 said that the fire department responders showed up on the scene around 6 p.m. off the beach near 45th street to rescue the swimmer.

White Marlin Open website

Phil Heasley was the big winner of the White Marlin Open with a 76.5 pound fish that brought him the big prize of $2.8 million.

The rules came together for the man from Naples, Florida to allow him to pick up the purse that would have gone to the second and third place finishers.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that it is the smallest catch since 2012 and the second-smallest since the year 2000.

Meanwhile, the paper reports that Jim Conway’s blue marlin was the biggest in the last five years even though it lost its tail while being transported to shore.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The names of the top applicants to be licensed to grow and process medical marijuana in Maryland are scheduled to be made public.

The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission is set to make the announcement Monday afternoon.

Earlier this month, the commission approved the top applicants in line for 15 grower licenses and 15 processor licenses. The panel also chose five applicants to be alternates in each category, in case any of the top 15 fail to be licensed after background checks.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Service Employees International Union president Mary Kay Henry told participants at a Virginia convention that they were heroes and heroines for not being afraid to take to the streets to protest for higher wages.

Henry spoke Friday at the first-ever "Fight for $15 Convention" in Richmond. Workers from around the country were gathering at the union-backed convention to press for a $15 minimum wage nationwide.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch  reports Henry told participants: "We have your back, and we will have your back until we win."

Don Rush

NEWPORT, Del. (AP) - Authorities say they are investigating a suspicious death after a body was found in the Christina River.

Delaware State Police say the body of a male was reported floating near the Newport boat ramp Saturday morning. Emergency workers declared the person dead at the scene.

Forensic investigators are working to identify the person and his cause of death.

Police did not release any additional information.

Don Rush

The battle over the Gills Neck Village Center near Lewes, Delaware is moving to the Sussex County Council. It is a conflict that has been a decade in the making. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush looks at the issues surrounding the the shopping center and development in the area.


The presidential campaigns are now of the gate as their national party conventions disappear and the Labor Day jump off point looms on the horizon. So, what did we learn from these confabs as the candidates joust their way to the finish line? Delmarva Public Radio Essayist George Merrill suggests that it is the myths of the parties that will capture the soul of the voter.

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SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) - As authorities investigate the cause of a deadly explosion and apartment fire in an apartment complex outside the nation's capital, they are looking into reports that residents smelled natural gas before the blast.

Two people were killed, others are missing and more than 30 were taken to hospitals for treatment. Police did not release the identities of the dead.

Firefighters used ladders to rescue people from upper floors, and residents tossed children from balconies to safety below.

CBC / Centers for Disease Control and Prvention

Delaware will be using some $813-thousand in grant money from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to combat the Zika virus.

The funds will allow the First State to hire a new epidemiologist and physician to fight the virus.

It will also help fund the efforts to trap mosquitos and test samples.

$180-thousand will go for the epidemiologist and a part time physician.

Another $270-thousand will go to a lab for testing, planning and surveillance while $166-thousand will directly pay for mosquito control.

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Eastern Equine Encephalitis was detected last month in Wicomico and Worcester Counties.

It’s a mosquito born virus that can cause some mild health problems but also could turn serious and cause death.

WBOC reports that the Wicomico County Health Department says on average only five to 10 people are affected by the virus.  

Dennis DeCintio with the Department says that number there is a high fatality rate of around one third.

Otherwise symptoms can include chills, muscle aches and join pain.

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - An animal rights group has released an undercover video that shows Tyson Foods workers abusing and improperly killing chickens at various breeding facilities in Virginia.