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.

 

             A couple of Delaware lawmakers on the General Assembly’s Bond Bill Committee say they don’t like a recommendation by Governor Jack Markell for $3 million to fund bike trails.

            Instead, they say the money should go toward maintaining aging dams and dikes statewide.

            The objections by Representatives Helene Keeley and John Viola…came during yesterday’s hearing on budget requests from the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

 

         (AP) - The University of Delaware is asking state lawmakers to accept Gov. Jack Markell's recommendation for $3 million to help the school rehabilitate some labs.

     University President Pat Harker tells WDEL Radio some of the school's labs on its Newark campus and one in Lewes are old and need repairs. Harker says the rehabilitation projects would cost more than $3 million, so other funds would be necessary as well.

 

 

            Maryland has become the eighth state to legalize same sex marriage.

            Yesterday afternoon Governor Martin O’Malley signed the legislation which will go into effect next January.
            But before that, opponents are expected to gather the 56-thousand signatures needed to put the law to a referendum on the November ballot to give voters the final decision.

            Much of that opposition is expected to come from African American pastors and the Catholic Church.

           

Delmarva Today 03-02-2012

Mar 2, 2012

Debating Gay Marriage in Maryland

 

Guests:

Juila Glanz, President, Salisbury University Graduate Student Council

Charles Lollar, New Day Maryland

 

       PRINCESS ANNE, Md. (AP) - State police have identified a man shot and killed by troopers after a chase on the lower Eastern Shore.

     Police say 49-year-old Terry Diaz of Princess Anne was shot in the head after the chase in Somerset County Wednesday night. He died at the scene.

     Police haven't said why the troopers shot Diaz. Diaz's sport-utility vehicle was stuck in the mud in a grass median at the time, and he was inside the car. Police say the troopers gave Diaz verbal commands before they opened fire.

  

       Delaware state economic development chief Alan Levin is blaming the federal government for stalling Fisker Automotive's plans to build hybrid-electric sedans at a former General Motors assembly plant near Newport.

      He told a legislative committee in Dover this week…that Delaware taxpayers already have more than $17 million invested in the project.

      The U.S. Department of Energy has blocked Fisker's access to more than $300 million in loan funds after the company failed to reach certain benchmarks.

 

            Making sex marriage legal in Maryland will take another step today.

            But, expect a major battle over the issue in November.

            Delmarva Public Radio’s Travis McKee has this report:

 

 

             Davis Ruark has a new job: At the prosecutor’s table in New Mexico.

            The former Wicomico County state’s attorney has been representing criminal defendants since he was defeated in the 2010 election.

            The Salisbury Daily Times reports that he posted a notice on his Facebook page that he had accepted a position as senior assistant district attorney in the 5th Judicial District in New Mexico.

            Ruark wrote that while he looks forward to his new job he will always consider the Eastern Shore his home.

 

     STAUNTON, Va. (AP) - Modeling used by the Environmental Protection Agency to craft the cleanup of the Chesapeake Bay has been a point of contention.

     A new study is raising that issue anew, this time when it comes to forested areas.

     The News Leaderof Staunton reports thestudy by the United States Geological Survey concludes thatforested areas account for 2 percent of sediment entering waterwaysin the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.

 

             Delaware’s Congressional Delegation wants the Social Security Administration to explain why its Dover administrative law judges have some of the highest denial rates in disability cases.

            The Wilmington News Journal reports that the agency denial rate has been 57 percent in the cases they have heard since October of last year.

            That is compared to the national average of 41 percent.

            In the fiscal years of 2010 and 2011 the state denial rates ranged from 54 percent to 60 percent.

 

      DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's Department of Health and Social Services says it needs $13 million to keep its current 153 buildings functional.

     Agency chief Secretary Rita Landgraf tells WDEL Radio that the average age of the agency'sbuildings is morethan 57 years old. So, she says, they requireupkeep.

     The department has five hospitals among its facilities.

     Landgraf's capital funding request also includes about $2 million for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund. That fund provides low-interest loans to community water systems.

 

      CAMBRIDGE, Md. (AP) - An officer has been shot in the Eastern Shore town of Cambridge during a barricade situation.

     Cambridge Police spokesman Lt. Martin Herring says shots were fired Wednesday morning in a residential area of the town. Herring says a member of a U.S. Marshal's task force was shot. It was not clear how seriously the officer was injured.

     Herring says police are responding to a barricade situation. He says other details were not yet clear.

 

 

 

     

      DOVER, Del. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a Delaware businessman who pleaded guilty in an illegal campaign finance scheme deserves prison time, not home confinement.

     In papers filed in federal court in Wilmington this week, prosecutors say Christopher Tigani deserves a prison sentence of at least 25 months. They say such a sentence would send a message that engaging in political corruption has serious consequences.

     Tigani faces up to 16 years in prison when he is sentenced March 6.

 

     

      DOVER, Del. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a Delaware businessman who pleaded guilty in an illegal campaign finance scheme deserves prison time, not home confinement.

     In papers filed in federal court in Wilmington this week, prosecutors say Christopher Tigani deserves a prison sentence of at least 25 months. They say such a sentence would send a message that engaging in political corruption has serious consequences.

     Tigani faces up to 16 years in prison when he is sentenced March 6.

 

       BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland's school board is proposing that officials only be allowed to suspend students for more than 10 days if they believe that is the sole way to keep the school safe.

     A draft proposal released Tuesday by the state school board is part of Maryland's effort to cut the number of days students are suspended for nonviolent offenses. The board also proposes eliminating the disproportionate number of suspensions for minorities and special education students.

 

       BALTIMORE (AP) - Maryland's school board is proposing that officials only be allowed to suspend students for more than 10 days if they believe that is the sole way to keep the school safe.

     A draft proposal released Tuesday by the state school board is part of Maryland's effort to cut the number of days students are suspended for nonviolent offenses. The board also proposes eliminating the disproportionate number of suspensions for minorities and special education students.

 

       ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland residents who oppose Gov. Martin O'Malley's proposal to cap income tax deductions have held a rally to express their frustration about how the plan would affect mortgage interest deductions.

     Opponents braved rainy weather to fill Lawyer's Mall on Wednesday in front of the Maryland State House.

     Karen Winterling and her husband David, who are small business owners from Ellicott City, say they counted on the mortgage deduction when they bought their home 10 years ago.

 

       GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - The Sussex County council is considering a proposal to allow electronic billboards. 

       WBOC-TV reports that the plan being evaluated by the council would allow the digital devices on commercial land with a special-use permit.

     During a meeting on Tuesday, Councilman George Cole questioned whether additional restrictions were needed to limit electronic billboards to major highways.

     There is currently one electronic billboard in Delaware, along Interstate 95 in New Castle County.

 

      DOVER, Del. (AP) - The president of Delaware Technical Community College is asking state lawmakers to approve an additional $10 million for capital funding over Gov. Jack Markell's recommendation if funds become available.

     Delaware Tech President Lonnie George tells WDEL Radio the money would be used to expand instructional space. He says the school needs additional classrooms, science labs and computer labs.

 

          

     DOVER, Del. (AP) - The city of Dover is considering a curfew for youth ages 16 and younger.

     A Dover Council committee is scheduled to consider a draft of the proposed curfew Wednesday. During the school year the curfew would be in effect from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and from midnight to 6 a.m. on weekends. The curfew would start one hour later in the summer.

 

 

            Salisbury City Council member Laura Mitchell has been hospitalized for blood clots.

            But, her husband told the Salisbury Daily Times that she is expected to make a full recovery.

            Miguel Mitchell said that his wife has had blood clots before and underwent a routine procedure yesterday to remove them.

            Mitchell has been on crutches for around a week because of a knee injury.

           

 

             The baby whale, known as Minke, has died after losing its mother and its way.

            The whale showed up on a sandbar in the creek near The Route 589 bridge.

            The staff from the National Aquarium in Baltimore made the eventual decision to euthanize the animal.

            The 11 foot long female was severely emaciated and was believed to be as young as two weeks old.

            The body of the whale has been transferred to the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC for research and will undergo CT scans.

 

          

          Princess Anne town officials are hoping to get funding and other support for a housing rehabilitation program to improve properties and create affordable homeownership.

            Town Manager Brenda Benton said that a committee was working on an application for a state Sustainable Communities designation.

            Two programs are under consideration.

            One would provide for low-to-moderate income housing while the other would concentrate on fixing up historic properties.

 

 

          Delaware forestry crews have begun lighting controlled fires deep inside  Cape Henlopen State Park aimed at clearing some of the dense leaf layer on the floor of the forest.

            Rob Line, environmental stewardship program manager for the state parks, told the Wilmington News Journal…that officials have been talking about a controlled burn for key habitat areas in the park for decades.

            The largest three plots that span 12.6 acres east of Gordons Pond will be burned at a later time.

 

 

            The Delaware Department of Transportation Secretary Shailen Bhatt has made his case before the General Assembly’s bond bill committee for more than $180 million.

            The budget includes money for projects ranging from the Westover connector in the north to Atlantic Road in the south.

            In addition, there are a number of safety projects statewide.

            Meanwhile, Bhatt told the panel…that the state was working with paratransit partners…to provide similar services…to see if there can be any consolidation.

 

        The criminal charge against a former Wicomico County state's attorney Davis Ruark was placed on the inactive docket during a District Court hearing this morning.

        The Salisbury Daily Times reports that Ruark was taken into custody by Salisbury police officers in October  after a former girlfriend alleged he violated the civil peace order filed against him.

         But a Frederick County assistant state's attorney who is prosecuting the case asked the court to amend the charge to failure to comply with a peace order.

 

        REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - New commissioners in Delaware's beach towns say their biggest challenge is balancing the interests of full-time residents and those who visit or live there part-time.

     Mark Hunker, the newest commissioner in Rehoboth Beach, tells The Daily Times that his vote goes to what he believes the community needs, and he favors the masses over the few. Hunker, who is gay and owns two restaurants, says he doesn't want to represent only gay community interests or business interests.

 

              The Salisbury City Council is set to hear from the public tonight and take an initial vote on a special assessment district that would pay for the cost of a sidewalk in the Harbor Pointe neighborhood.

            The local home owners have come to the city several times before asking that the municipality put in a sidewalk on Harbor Pointe Drive from Pemberton Drive to Anchors Way.

Delmarva Today 02-24-2012

Feb 24, 2012

"Ye Bare and Ye Cubb" is believed to be the first English language play performed in the New World. As a portent of the future, it had a rebellious nature.

 

Guests:

Professor Joel Eis...has written a work called "The Play in August"..which tell a tight, imaginative story of how it may have come about.

Dr. Ray Thompson...Director of the Nabb Resource Center for Delmarva History and Culture

 

     RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A bill that would define life as starting at conception has been approved in a key Senate committee.

     Eight Republicans voted for the measure, and the committee's seven Democrats opposed it after an hour-long hearing on the bill that is similar to one in Missouri.

     The bill passed after an amendment clarifying that no provision in it would restrict the use of federally approved contraception.

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