Don Rush

News Director

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
1:20 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Chesapeake Bay Restoration Pits Agriculture Against the VA State Attorney General

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring (D)
Credit official photo

HAMPTON, Va. (AP) - Virginia is defending the federal and state plan to restore the Chesapeake Bay.

Attorney General Mark R. Herring announced Thursday the state has filed a friend-of-the court brief in support of pollution limits to restore the bay after decades of neglect. The filing is with the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia.

Farm industry groups are appealing a federal judge's decision last September to uphold the federal pollution limits.

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Local News
2:28 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

MD Governor Signs Bills

State Capital in Annapolis
Credit maryland state government

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley has signed his first bill of the year, expanding the state's pre-kindergarten program to another 1,600 children from low-income families.

The ceremony was held Tuesday, hours after the General Assembly session ended.

O'Malley included $4.3 million in next year's budget to fund the expansion, but it took an act of the legislature to put his plan in action.

Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, who is running for governor, called the measure another step toward universal pre-K, a major theme of his campaign.

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Local News
2:16 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Curbing High Level Govt Officials From Lobbying in Delaware

Legislative Hall, Dover
Credit delaware state park

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A state House committee is considering a bill that would prevent high-level government officials in Delaware from immediately becoming lobbyists after leaving their state posts.

A Republican-sponsored bill to be discussed Wednesday in the House Administration Committee prohibits state agency heads, cabinet officials and members of the governor's executive staff from lobbying for two years after leaving state government.

Violation of the prohibition would be a misdemeanor.

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Local News
2:05 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Echoes of War on The Shore Fracas

Credit Salisbury University logo

Over the weekend Salisbury Police broke up an outdoor bashed by Salisbury University students.

It occurred around 3:30 p.m. on Saturday where around 500 people were gathered outside the residents at Cedar Crossing dubbed the New Zoo by students.

Students said it was similar to a “War on the Shore” party.

This year the lacrosse game against Washington College was held during spring break when most students were not on campus.

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Local News
1:22 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Opening Up Family Court in Delaware

Credit creative commons

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A task force studying the feasibility of opening Family Court civil proceedings in Delaware is putting the final touches on a report to be submitted to lawmakers.

Delaware's constitution says all courts shall be open, but many Family Court proceedings are nevertheless closed to the public because of laws passed by the General Assembly.

Those closed proceedings include hearings involving adoption, termination of parental rights, custody rights and visitation, guardianship, paternity and divorce.

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Local News
1:11 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

DuPont Heir Failed To Get Treatment At Clinic For Child Rape

Robert Richard IV
Credit mug shot

Du Pont heir Robert Richards IV who raped his daughter failed to complete an intensive program at an inpatient psychiatric clinic in Massachusetts.

It was part of his sentence that allowed him to not to go to prison.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that his attorney said Richards never went to the expensive McLean Hospital near Boston because of inadequate security.

Instead, Richards stayed in Delaware.

In 2009 the prosecution in the case said it would accept no prison time in such child abuse cases because Richards would get the out of state help.

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Local News
1:01 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Gun Found in Carry-On Luggage at BWI

Credit all-free-download.com

LINTHICUM, Md. (AP) - Authorities say a Virginia man was arrested at Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport after a loaded handgun was found in his carry-on bag at a security checkpoint.

The Transportation Security Administration announced Tuesday that the man was stopped Sunday afternoon when an officer staffing the X-ray machine spotted the gun in the bag of a man ticketed to fly to Salt Lake City. TSA says the gun was loaded with seven rounds with one in the chamber.

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Local News
12:50 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Virginia Eastern Shore Food Pantry Gets Grant from Perdue

Credit usda.gov

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - A mobile food pantry serving Virginia's Eastern Shore has received a $10,000 grant from the Arthur W. Perdue Foundation.

The gift to the Mobile Pantry Program run by the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia and the Eastern Shore was announced Tuesday. Perdue Farms is also generating 20,000 pounds of products.

The combined contribution will enable the food bank to distribute nearly 40,000 meals to children, seniors and families in Northampton and Accomack counties.

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Local News
2:32 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Somerset County Wind Turbine Delay Gets Legislative Approval

Credit creative commons

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley says he still has misgivings about a bill to set a 13-month moratorium on the development of tall wind turbines within 56 miles of the U.S. Naval Air Station Patuxent River base in southern Maryland.

O'Malley wouldn't say Monday if he would veto legislation that has been sent to his desk. But the governor, who is a strong supporter of wind energy, says, "I have yet to conclude that windmills are quite the threat to Naval air radar that those advocating for this ban have concluded."

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Local News
2:14 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

MD Legislature Approves Pot Bills

Credit all-free-download.com

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland's legislature has given final approval to a bill that would eliminate criminal charges for possessing small amounts of marijuana and the governor says he plants to sign it.

The Senate voted Monday to accept several compromises the House added over the weekend.

The bill would keep marijuana use illegal but make it akin to a traffic violation. The House opted to require all teen offenders to be evaluated for treatment. It also voted to raise the penalties to $20 for a second offense and $500 for a third offense, up from a maximum of $100.

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Local News
2:00 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

New OC Beach Patrol Facility Approved by City Council

Credit OC Beach Patrol logo

The Ocean City town council has approved a $2 million three story facility to house the resort’s Beach Patrol.

It is expected to be in operation by May of next year.

The final design raises the structure to protect it from flooding and widens the sidewalk along Talbot Street.

In addition, there will be a larger work space for police officers.

The exterior has been inspired by historic Ocean City buildings such as the Life-Saving Station Museum.

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Local News
1:43 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Effects of Hurricane Sandy Closes Bridge in Brandywine Creek State Park

Brandywine Creek
Credit Brandywine Creek State Park website

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - State parks officials say they have permanently closed a bridge in a park near Wilmington after damage from Superstorm Sandy and flooding rendered it unsafe.

According to a notice posted on the website of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, Rocky Run Bridge in Brandywine Creek State Park has been found to be unsafe for any use. Officials say that includes foot and cycling traffic.

After Sandy in 2012, traffic was limited to pedestrian use. Further flooding weakened the bridge's support structure.

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Local News
1:23 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

"House of Cards" Tax Credit Falters in Annapolis

Credit House of Cards netflix

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland's General Assembly has run out of time to increase the yearly limit on tax credits designed to attract film projects and TV series.

The company that owns the series "House of Cards" has threatened to move operations out of state if they don't receive $15 million next season. A budget committee reached a last-minute deal last week to put $18.5 million in the tax credit fund next year, leaving cash for other projects.

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Local News
1:14 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

MD Legislature Cracks Down on Distracted Drivers

Credit creative commons

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A measure to increase penalties for distracted driving that cause serious accidents has been passed by the Maryland General Assembly.

Lawmakers gave the bill final approval Monday. It now goes to Gov. Martin O'Malley.

The measure would increase penalties for people who cause accidents resulting in death or serious injury while text messaging or using hand-held cellphones.

Offenders would face penalties of up to a year in jail and a fine of $5,000 under the bill.

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Local News
1:04 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

MD Governor Looks to Overhaul Bail Hearing System

Credit freeclipartnow.com

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Gov. Martin O'Malley says he plans to work on overhauling Maryland's bail hearing system, after a bill that would have done so stalled in the Legislature.

O'Malley told reporters Monday that he will work with stakeholders who supported the overhaul approach backed by Sen. Brian Frosh.

That would use data on each defendant, such as criminal history, to assess the person's risk of committing more crimes if they were released from jail. Low-risk defendants would be released automatically.

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Local News
12:55 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Rehoboth Beach Tanger Outlet Renovations, Right Through Summer

Credit Tanger Outlets

If you’re shopping in the Rehoboth Beach area this summer you might run into some congestion around the Tanger Outlet Midway Center where renovations are now in their third month and are expected to continue on through the summer.

The project is expected to be completed within a seven month period.

Amy Norgate, the center’s general manager told WBOC, that there will be a raised pedestrian walkway across the parking lot and believes when finished it will bring in more customers.

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Local News
12:43 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

Governor Jack Markell Praises "Race to the Top" in Delaware

Credit Don Rush

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - Gov. Jack Markell says Delaware should be proud of the progress it's made under the federal Race to the Top education reform program.

Markell discussed the state's Race to the Top progress Monday in a speech to the P-20 council, a group formed a decade ago to coordinate and align education efforts across all grade levels.

Markell said the state has used more than $100 million in federal Race to the Top funding to develop a sound foundation for school improvement, but he knows there's much hard work still left to do.

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Local News
1:28 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Somerset Wind Project Faces Uncertainty After MD Senate Vote

Credit cleanenergycouncil.org

With the overwhelming Senate vote to delay the $200 million wind project in Somerset County state Senator Jim Mathias said that this vote would be a $45 million loss for local residents.

Developers had hoped to move forward with construction of the Great Bay Wind Energy projection by next summer.

But the measure would delay that for another 15 months while a study is conducted to examine the impact of the wind turbines the U.S. Naval Air Station on the Patuxent River.

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Local News
1:16 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Pollution Lawsuit to Go Forward Against Former Steel Plant in Delaware

Credit Evraz website

A pollution lawsuit by dozens of residents against the now-closed Evraz Claymont Steel plant will continue after all.

Superior Court Judge John Parkins said the fact that at least 82 people have allegedly been harmed supports continuation of the lawsuit.

He noted that they complain of specific injuries to them.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that for years residents around the plant said that the scrap steel recycling and plate-making operations produced damaging metallic slag dust and toxic pollutants.

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Local News
1:05 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Proposed Roundabout for Route 7 in Christiana

Credit fotosearch.com

There will now be a round-about along Delaware Route 7 on Main Street just north of Delaware Route 273 in Christiana.

This would still give full access to the Village while addressing safety concerns at the intersection.

Originally, The Delaware Department of Transportation had planned on creating a dead-end on East Main Street.

But, the Wilmington News Journal reports that local resident argued that this would hurt the delivery of emergency services and trap people in the community when there was a flood.

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Local News
12:48 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

All-Boys Catholic School Gets $10 Million Endowment

Credit Salesianum School website

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Salesianum School has received a $10 million donation to its endowment.

The News Journals reports that the school announced the donation from developer Anthony Fusco Sr. in an advertisement in the newspaper. The ad says the donation means that the school will "remain open to all who wish to learn."

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Local News
12:36 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Countdown to Midnight for MD Legislature

Credit creative commons

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland lawmakers will be putting finishing touches on measures related to marijuana and an increase in the minimum wage on the last day of the state's legislative session.

The session is scheduled to end at midnight Monday.

The House of Delegates approved a marijuana decriminalization bill on Saturday. The state Senate approved a similar bill earlier, but there are some changes senators would have to approve to send the bill to Gov. Martin O'Malley.

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Local News
12:25 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Delaware Officials Review "Race to the Top" Implementation

Credit Don Rush

NEW CASTLE, Del. (AP) - State officials are reviewing Delaware's progress in implementing Race to the Top education reforms.

Gov. Jack Markell planned to join education secretary Mark Murphy on Monday to update state Board of Education member on what Delaware has done with the four-year $119 million federal grant it received in 2010.

Monday's discussion will be followed by a visit to Wilmington on Wednesday by U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan to mark the four-year anniversary of Delaware's selection as one of the first two states to receive Race to the Top funding.

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Local News
12:47 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

MD General Assembly Approves Pre-K Expansion

Credit RF123.com

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A $4.3 million expansion of pre-kindergarten has been approved by the Maryland General Assembly.

The Senate voted 46-1 for the bill Friday.

The measure now goes to Gov. Martin O'Malley, who proposed the bill. It will enroll an additional 1,600 children around the state for children whose families make up to 300 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

It also creates a pre-K expansion fund for business and philanthropic entities to contribute money to support future expansion.

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Local News
11:39 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Warden killed in accident

Credit RF123

James Henderson, a former warden at the Somerset County Detention Center,  was killed in an industrial accident in Harrington Delaware.

Henderson was working for AET Electric of Parsonsburg installing electrical service in a vacant warehouse on Cluckey Drive when he was caught between a forklift and a pole.

Authorities do not suspect there was any foul play.

As warden he was the subject of an investigation into the Detention center back in January of 2007 over an alleged assault.

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Local News
11:08 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Minimum Wage Bill

Credit Don Rush

The Senate could take up the bill as early as Friday.

The measure phases in increases over the next several years, topping out at $10.10 in July of 2018.

It also freezes the minimum wage for tipped workers at $3.63.

An employer may pay an employee who is 19 or younger 85 percent of the minimum wage for the employee's first six months.

It includes a four-year 3.5 percent mandated increase for community service providers who work with the developmentally disabled to keep their pay above minimum wage.

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Local News
10:55 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Flawed Health Exchange Website

Credit Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Maryland auditors say a review of the state's badly flawed health exchange website is limited and does not provide a complete understanding of decisions that were made.

The audit was released Thursday as members of a legislative oversight panel were scheduled to meet in Annapolis.

Thomas Barnickel, the state's legislative auditor, wrote that many of the documents reviewed by the state's office of legislative audits were redacted. He wrote 26 percent of the documents were redacted, with the procurement documents being "heavily redacted."

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Local News
10:37 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Raising Annual Cap on Film Tax Credits

Credit Don Rush

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Lawmakers have agreed to pony up extra money next year to keep "House of Cards" filming in Maryland.

During budget negotiations Thursday, they also rejected the possibility of seizing film companies' property if they leave the state after accepting tax credits.

Warren Descheneaux, the legislature's top budget analyst, says a House committee will likely vote to raise the annual cap on film tax credits from $7.5 million to $11 million.

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Local News
10:21 am
Fri April 4, 2014

The Centre at Salisbury

Credit Don Rush

The recent bomb hoax at the Centre at Salisbury could have cost the mall as much as a quarter of a million dollars.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that’s according to past year financial statements at the anchor stores.

For the nearby restaurants that include the Olive Garden, Red Lobster and Longhorn Steakhouse the potential loss was $33-thousand.

Meanwhile, Macy’s loss was a potential $90- thousand.

The National Retail Federation says that retail centers do prepare for emergency closing anticipating at least one during a period.

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Local News
10:05 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Proposed Amendment to Delaware's Constitution

Credit Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - State House members have postponed a vote on a proposed amendment to Delaware's constitution allowing bail to be denied for defendants charged with non-capital crimes.

The proposed amendment, which was pulled from Thursday's House agenda, is aimed at stopping the release of violent offenders who wind up being charged with more violent crimes after being released on bail.

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