sussex county

Local News
11:54 am
Fri November 22, 2013

Slower Personal Income Growth in Southern Delaware

Credit Don Rush

Delaware’s southern counties ran behind the rest of the country in personal income growth last year.

The latest statistics from the Bureau of Economic Analysis found that over all the First State’s personal per capita income growth slowed compared to the year 2011.

Meanwhile, New Castle County actually ran ahead of the national pace in personal per capital income at 5 percent while overall statewide it was 4.2 percent.

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Local News
9:02 am
Mon November 11, 2013

Public Gets Meeting On New Sussex County Flood Plain Maps

Credit library

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be hold a public meeting next month for property owners and residents in Sussex County so they can get a chance to look at the new flood plain maps.

The gathering will be at 4-6 p.m. on December 2nd at the CHEER Community Center in Georgetown.

There will be representatives from various state and federal agencies in attendance who will identify the county’s flood-prone areas.

It’s the first time in 8 years that the maps have been updated.

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Local News
8:46 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Could Punkin Chunkin Championship Leave First State?

Credit Punkin Chunkin website

Just as Punkin Chunkin wrapped up its 2013 contest with a record shot of over 46-hundred feet the president of the non-profit group that runs the events is worried that it might have to move out of Delaware after this year.

John Huber, president of the World Championship Punkin Chunkin Association, says he’s concerned about the insurance liability and bills from the state and local government.

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Local News
8:53 am
Thu October 24, 2013

Move To Avoid Exceptions for Building Height Restrictions in Sussex County

Sussex County Council member Joan Deaver
Credit Sussex County website

Governor Jack Markell will be in Dewey Beach for the grand-opening of a Hyatt Place.

But it will be against the backdrop of litigation and negotiations over the height of the building which exceeds the city’s normal 35-foot height limit by 11 feet.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that opponents say they’re concerned about keeping the coastal skyline from becoming like that of Ocean City.

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Local News
12:48 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Delmarva Power Replaces Wooden Power Poles Along Coastal Highway

Credit utility pole creative commons wikimedia

OCEAN CITY, Md. (AP) - Delmarva Power will replace 90 wooden utility poles that hold a high-voltage transmission line along Coastal Highway in Ocean City.

The utility says the work began Monday and will affect service in Ocean City and parts of Worcester County, Md. and Sussex County, Del.

WBOC reports that the $10 million project involves a 69,000-volt transmission line. Ninety wooden poles, most of them more than 40 years old, will be replaced with galvanized steel poles. The steel poles need less maintenance and can withstand winds of up to 120 mph.

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Local News
9:03 am
Wed October 9, 2013

Sussex County Sheriff Jeff Christopher Considers Federal Appeal

Sussex County Sheriff Jeff Christopher
Credit official photo

It was a defiant Sussex County Sheriff Jeff Christopher when he heard the news that the Delaware State Supreme Court ruled unanimously that he did not have the power to make arrests.

Christopher said his suit was structured to be directly linked to the federal system and was contemplating an appeal in federal courts.

The embattled sheriff told the Salisbury Daily Times that he has been getting strong public support in Sussex County.

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Local News
8:44 am
Tue October 8, 2013

Delaware Sheriffs Cannot Make Arrests, High Court Rules

Sussex County Sheriff Jeff Christopher
Credit official photo

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - The Delaware Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling that sheriffs in Delaware do not have police powers.

In a 26-page opinion released Monday, the justices affirmed a March ruling by a Superior Court judge upholding the constitutionality of a bill passed by state lawmakers that bars sheriffs and their deputies from making arrests.

Sussex County sheriff Jeff Christopher argued that lawmakers exceeded their authority and that they could not limit the power of sheriffs in such a drastic fashion without passing a constitutional amendment.

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Local News
9:03 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Sussex County Wants Greater Say in Private Sewer Systems

Sussex County Council
Credit Sussex County Counci Website

The Sussex County Council wants a greater say in the myriad of individual sewer systems spread out across the county.

The Council voted unanimously early last month to tell that Public Service Commission that it wants all of the unincorporated land in Sussex County to be considered a service territory that would be eligible for a county-run wastewater service.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that Sussex County officials were disturbed by a wastewater utility’s claim of sewer-service rights for several scattered properties.

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12:28 pm
Wed August 14, 2013

New Rules for Hunting Coyotes in Delaware

Credit creative commons wikimedia

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Delaware officials are proposing new rules to allow hunting and trapping of coyotes.

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control is proposing a change to allow hunters to seek out and kill coyotes from November through February. Coyotes and red fox could be trapped from December to March.

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9:57 am
Thu July 11, 2013

Concealed Carry Gun Permits Up in Sussex County

Credit wikimedia commons

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Sussex County officials say they are seeing a significant jump in the number of applications for concealed carry gun permits.

Officials tells WBOC-TV that 676 people have applied for a concealed firearms permit in the county so far in 2013. In all of 2012, only 435 applications were filed.

Officials say 2,617 people hold active permits to carry a concealed firearm in Sussex County.

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9:25 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Proposed Natural Gas Pipeline for Sussex County

Credit wikimedia commons

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - State officials and several large businesses are talking about building a new pipeline to bring natural gas to Sussex County in greater quantities.

Delaware natural resources secretary Colin O'Mara tells The News Journal of Wilmington that state officials and Eastern Shore Natural Gas, a Dover-based pipeline construction company, are talking about building the new line south of Dover.

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9:55 am
Tue May 14, 2013

Sexual Assault Suit Against Vance Phillips; OC Manager David Recor Faces Restraining Court Order

Sussex County Council member Vance Phillips
Credit Sussex County website

Vance Phillips

A lawsuit has been filed against veteran Sussex County council member Vance Phillips claiming that he sexually assaulted a young woman after encouraging her to become involved in politics.

The complaint claims that Phillips forced sex on the woman several times in 2011 just after she turned 18.

The suit alleges that Phillips threatened the young woman not to tell anyone.

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8:41 am
Mon May 13, 2013

No Transitional Home for Female Vets in Milford

Credit Don Rush

MILFORD, Del. (AP) - A Delaware foundation has abandoned plans to open a transitional home for female veterans and their children at a Milford location it had picked out.

The Home of the Brave Foundation had bought property in town where it planned to provide housing.

But the foundation says it's decided to look for other locations after encountering resistance from neighbors.

The Sussex County Board of Adjustment had also decided to approve the home for only two years and to require the foundation to return for re-approval.

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9:07 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Sussex County Lowers Threshold Income for Housing Program

Credit diamond state community land turst logo

Sussex County has dropped the income threshold for its moderately priced housing program from 80 percent of the area’s median income to 50 percent.

That means a family of four earning $30-thousand a year can now qualify to buy a home under the program instead of $47-thousand a year.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the expansion is one of the many changes required by an agreement as a result of a complaint brought by the US Justice Department last November.

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9:09 am
Wed February 20, 2013

Opposition Shows Up Against Love Creek Campground

Stop Love Creek Campground and Resort Petition Drive

Around 200 people showed up at meeting in Georgetown yesterday on a proposed RV Park in Sussex County.

The Love Creek RV Resort and Campground would cover 162 acres just outside of Lewes.

It would provide accommodations for RV’s tents and cabin renters.

But some local residents are up in arms over the plans.

WBOC reports that Lawrence Sholler of Lewes said that while this might be a great idea this is wrong place.

Among concerns…is the environmental impact on the creek as well as traffic congestion.

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8:58 am
Thu January 31, 2013

High Winds Knock Out Power on Delmarva

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Thousands of people have lost power after strong storms blew through Delaware and Maryland's Eastern Shore.

Delmarva Power is reporting about 5,400 customers were still without power in area early Thursday. The outages were the worst in New Castle and Sussex counties in Delaware and Talbot County in Maryland. More than 7,800 customers were without power overnight.

8:42 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Second Flu Death in Delaware

DOVER, Del. (AP)- Delaware public health officials are reporting the state's second flu death in the 2012-2013 flu season. 

Officials said Wednesday that a 79-year-old Sussex County woman has died from the flu. They said the woman had several underlying health conditions. Officials announced Tuesday that a 2-month-old girl from New Castle County was the state's first flu death this year. 

Health officials are urging residents over the age of 6 months who have not been vaccinated to get a flu shot.

9:25 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Cheaper Marriage License in Sussex for Military Personnel and Vets

Credit wedding, Carrie MCCollum

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Sussex County is making getting married a little less expensive for active duty military members and veterans of the armed forces.

The Sussex County Council voted Tuesday to make marriage and civil union licenses free members of the military and veterans. The licenses will be free regardless of where the person lives.

The vote doesn't change fees for everyone else. Delaware residents have to pay $50 and nonresidents $100. The ordinance making the licenses free for military members goes into effect Jan. 1, 2013.

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8:58 am
Tue October 23, 2012

Eric Bodenweiser Indicted on Child Molestation Charges

Eric Bodenweiser
bodenweiser, Delaware Department of Justice

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A Republican who recently dropped out of a state Senate race for personal reasons has been indicted on charges of child sexual abuse.

A Sussex County grand jury indicted Eric Bodenweiser on Monday on 39 counts of unlawful sexual intercourse and 74 counts of unlawful sexual contact.

Authorities said the 53-year-old Bodenweiser turned himself into state police and was committed to the Sussex Correctional Institution in default of $250,000 secured bail. It was not immediately clear if he has hired a lawyer.

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3:07 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Sussex County Settles Lord's Prayer Suit

Lord's Prayer,

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Sussex County Council meetings will continue to feature opening prayers, with one important exception.

Council members voted 3-2 on Tuesday to approve a settlement with a group that challenged the council's practice of reciting the Lord's Prayer.

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2:58 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Deal for More State Police in Sussex County

GEORGETOWN, Del. (AP) - Sussex County officials have reached an agreement with Delaware State Police on state troopers patrolling unincorporated areas of the county.

Authorities are resuming terms of a 2007 contract that pays for additional troopers to be assigned to Sussex County. Under that agreement, the county pays part of the salaries of 40 additional troopers above the normal complement assigned to the three state police units in Sussex.

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12:11 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

Lower Waste Water Bills for Sussex County Customers

(AP) Tens of thousands of public waste water customers in Sussex County are seeing savings in their bills this summer.

The county says that's because it refinanced more than $61 million in construction debt.

It says the savings are being turned over to residents in the form of lower assessments, beginning with quarterly and annual this summer going out this month.

The annual savings will range from $3 to $73 per customer. The savings will affect nearly 56,500 customers.

8:26 am
Mon June 25, 2012

Sussex County Responds in Sheriff's Lawsuit Over Powers

In the fight over the powers of the County Sheriff in Delaware, Sussex County has responded to a lawsuit by its Sheriff Jeff Christopher who argues that he has the authority to make arrests and investigate crimes.

But the county countered in a four page filing that the Sheriff has not lined up the necessary parties behind his lawsuit to win noting that Christopher has not gotten the backing of federal state and local governments.

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8:55 am
Wed June 13, 2012

Sussex County Council Changes Lord's Prayer Practice

The Sussex Council has decided to change its practice of reciting the Lord’s Prayer at the beginning of its meetings.  

By a 3-to-2 vote the majority decided yesterday to have the Council President read the rotation of a non-sectarian prayer each week but that would also include the Lord’s Prayer.

Recently, a federal court judge ruled that plaintiffs would probably win a case barring the recitation of the Lord’s Prayer and urged the county to negotiate another policy on the prayer.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that both sides have agreed to mediation.

8:16 am
Mon June 11, 2012

Animal Shelter in Sussex County: A No Kill Facility

 The Safe Haven Animal Shelter has opened in Sussex County accepting cats and dogs. 

And it has a no-kill policy.

That puts it at odds with Delaware’s largest animal shelter in Kent county.

New Castle County also has a no kill policy.

The SPCA has contracts in all three counties to practice dog control taking in abandoned canines and investigating animal cruelty cases.

It also practices euthanasia with animals who are too ill, aggressive or where there is no room to house them.

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8:53 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Sheriff Powers Dispute in Sussex County Moves to Senate Floor

The Delaware Senate is now set to get legislation that could quell the fierce dispute over the powers of the Sheriff’s office in Sussex County.

The measure would clearly establish that the state’s Sheriffs do not have the authority to investigate crime or make arrests.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the House version of the bill easily got out of the Senate Executive Committee and should be heard on the Senate floor sometime next week.

Sussex County Sheriff Jeff Christopher claims that he has those powers under the state Constitution.

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8:28 am
Fri June 1, 2012

Sussex County Prayer Battle Goes to Arbitration

The battle over the Lord’s Prayer that opens the Sussex County Council meetings could be decided through arbitration.

The order by a US federal Magistrate will bring the two sides together in a Wilmington conference room on June 14th.

A group of residents is suing the Council saying that the prayer is a violation of the first amendment.

Three weeks ago District Judge Leonard Stark issued an injunction prohibiting the council from leading the audience at their meetings in the Lord’s Prayer.

7:52 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Sheriff's Powers Legislation Remerges in Dover


DOVER, Del. (AP) - The Democratic majority leader in the state House has introduced a bill asserting that county sheriffs and their deputies in Delaware do not have arrest authority.

Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf introduced the bill Thursday after the Republican sponsor of a similar measure tabled his own bill last week and introduced a resolution asking the state Supreme Court for guidance on the issue.

Legislation to clarify the powers of Delaware sheriffs was prompted by recent actions by the Sussex County sheriff.

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11:17 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Sussex County Church Seeks Expansion for Homeless Shelter


            A local church in Sussex County will be asking local officials to approve an expansion of its homeless shelter for women to now house men.

            The Philadelphia Pentecostal Holiness Church near Ellendale is asking the Board of Adjustment for a special-use exception.

            Bishop Major Foster is the church leader who worked with Brandywine Counseling & Community Services to start the shelter.

Foster wants to provide help to men…who have been released from prison or are on probation but have nowhere to stay.

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9:01 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Delaware State Panel Recomendations on Child Sexual Abuse


            Sussex County needs two psychiatrists to meet the needs of child abuse victims.

            That’s the recommendation in an 8 page report by a state panel formed after pediatrician Earl Bradley was convicted in a case that potentially involved over a 100 children.

            The Wilmington News Journal reports that the panel also recommends monitoring the demand for mental health services in Kent and Sussex counties in order to property respond in the event of another Bradley like case.

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