Tom Gordon

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New Castle County Auditor Robert Wasserbach denounced – what he called – a “cowardly” effort to diminish his probe into the county’s second in command David Grimaldi.

The investigation is looking into switching of $92 million to money manager UBS without going through the bidding process.

Wasserbach says that his report will look at whether the county’s finance managers actually abided by county policy when investing the county surplus.

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NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - New Castle County officials are launching a new initiative to warn people about the dangers of heroin.

The campaign, to be discussed at a news conference Thursday, is aimed at teenagers and at making suburban, middle class families aware that heroin use is happening in their communities as well as in the inner city.

County Executive Tom Gordon and County Police Chief Col. E.M. Setting were among the officials scheduled to be on hand to discuss the effort.

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New Castle County plans to spend $7.7 million on the Glasgow Park.

They plan to upgrade historic buildings, improve its farmers market and build a petting zoo.

County Executive Tom Gordon also plans to build a state of the art library.

He told the Wilmington News Journal that it’s all part of his effort to spend the money where it will do the most good.

A developer wanted the land that is now the park for commercial development before the county purchased the land and its historic buildings for $15 million eleven years ago.

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Two top New Castle County official knew there was a problem with billing errors for sewer ratepayers but took no steps to fix the problem.

That’s the conclusion of a draft report which found that the county’s finance department should have notified County Executive Tom Gordon about the problem.

Auditor Bob Wasserbach told the Wilmington News Journal that he found it troubling that the widespread billing problems were not addressed until he was informed.

He said apparently the finance department decided to address the issue on a customer by customer complaint basis.

Don Rush

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - The New Castle County auditor is examining the transfer of $92 million of the county government's reserve account to the United Bank of Switzerland.

The Wilmington News Journal reports the transfer was made shortly after New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon took office in November 2012.

Auditor Bob Wasserbach says he's reviewing whether the County Council should have voted on the transfer or whether it should have been put up for a public bid.

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New Castle County would pay $9 million for the old General Motors plant on Boxwood Road near Newport.

The site was supposed to have housed a facility for Fisker Automotive – a deal that fell through when financing collapsed.

Councilman George Smiley said the county is looking for some kind of manufacturing but not an automotive company.

County Executive Tom Gordon told the Wilmington News Journal that he was looking to attract high-paying jobs.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - New Castle County firefighters are calling for a new property tax to help pay for emergency medical services.

But the Wilmington News Journal reports that County Executive Tom Gordon says he'll fight it. State legislation would be needed to allow the county to create a special assessment to pay for emergency medical services.

Don Rush

A Maryland legislative panel voted yesterday to raise the state

Minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $10.10 an hour over three years.  

But they turned back an effort to index it to compensate for future inflation.

In addition, lawmakers delayed the implementation of the hikes by six months from June 1st to January 1st.

The vote in the House Economic matters Committee was 13-to-8.

The Chief of staff for New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon is facing a strange harassment complaint containing apparent anti-Semitic references.

Radio Station WDEL reports that on two separate occasions a homeowner in Autumwood near the state line with Pennsylvania found a letter address to Gordon criticizing Dave Grimaldi who is Italian and Jewish.

Gordon spokesman Tony Prado tells WDEL that the letter read in part “Send the bad apple Grimaldi back to New York.”

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New Castle County Council member Lisa Diller charged the administration of County Executive Tom Gordon with waging “a war on women.”

The issue surrounds an incident that occurred at a September 10th council meeting in which Diller raised her voice, angrily telling the County Attorney who is black to brief the council about a lawsuit involving the county and developers.

Gordon sent an email to her saying that her comments were part of a pattern of demeaning behavior and condescension by council members toward his aides.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon is enacting the county's first-ever nepotism policy.

WDEL-AM reports that the policy forbids hiring anyone to a position in which they'll be supervised by a relative. However, relatives are allowed to work in the same department.

The nepotism policy applies to all new hires, re-hires and future promotions or transfers.

Gordon says he hopes the new policy will ensure hiring, supervision and management are fair and that will boost public confidence in the county.

There will be no property tax increase this year for New Castle County residents.

But the 13 member county council did add a 3.9 percent rate increase to the proposed sewer budget while eliminating a proposed $2.2 million transfer from county reserves.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the late-night votes capped a week of heated exchanges including a charge that the proposed cuts by County Executive Tom Gordon were politically motivated.

In addition, the council made nearly $2.8 million in cuts to Gordon’s proposed operating budget.

The lawsuit to overturn the development plans for the Barley Mill Plaza office complex will resume April 22nd.

The case has been delayed after documents surfaced that New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon charged showed a potential for wrongdoing connected to the development.

Chancery Court Vice Chancellor Sam Glasscock III imposed a delay without reviewing the documents adding it could turn into a criminal matter.

Barley Mill development plans (file)

There might be a criminal dimension to the Barley Mill redevelopment lawsuit.

A set of mystery documents has delayed the court proceedings indefinitely after new Castle County attorneys told the court that they had found papers which could show criminal wrongdoing.

Incoming Wilmington Mayor Dennis Williams is calling for traffic studies before the Barley Mill Plaza development project receives any kind of government approval.

Williams says he is concerned that the large-scale commercial development could have a negative impact on revitalization efforts in downtown Wilmington and the River Front.

The announcement follows New Castle County Executive Tom Gordon’s statements that he agreed with a citizen group suing the county over the Barley Mill project. 

Their suit is now headed to Delaware’s Chancery Court.


HOCKESSIN, Del. (AP) - Candidates for New Castle County executive and Council president are offering different views on how to manage the city's police department.

The News Journal of Wilmington, Del. reports that during a debate Monday in Hockessin, Republican Council president candidate Mike Protack proposed adding 25 police officers a year in each of the next four to five years.

His Democratic opponent, Chris Bullock, says the city should focus on better deployment practices.

The Delaware AFL-CIO is backing Tom Gordon in the race for New Castle County Executive.

He held that job from 1997 to 2004.

He is one of four candidates including incumbent Paul Clark in the Democratic Primary on September 11th.

Gordon said he was humbled by the endorsement giving him boots on the ground to turnout the vote.

The AFL-CIO is made up of 110 union locals with 28-thousand members state wide.

Seventy-five percent of them are in New Castle County.