The Wicomico County Board of Education has approved the school calendar for the 2018-2019 school year. School will begin Tuesday, September 4th and get out on Wednesday June 9th. The calendar was developed with input from staff and community, and meets Governor Larry Hogan’s requirement that schools go into session after labor day and let out by June 15.
Eastern Shore native Alex Azar II is a confirmed as a member of President Donald Trump’s cabinet. Yesterday the US Senate confirmed Azar as Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services by a vote of 55-43. Azar is from Salisbury, worked in the HHS during the presidency of George Bush, and was most recently the VP of pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly.
A stunning bipartisan report on the opioid epidemic published yesterday by Delaware Senator Tom Carper and Ohio Senator Rob Portman. Both members of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, which just conducted a year long investigation into how international drug traffickers get synthetic opioids like fentanyl from China into the United States.
The findings: Fentanyl sellers in China openly operate on the internet, and their preferred method of shipment is through the US Postal Service, because it is less likely to be stopped at customs thanks to an overwhelmed and underequipped Post Office.
The investigation also revealed around 500 transactions that brought over $766 million worth of fentanyl into the US; the subcommittee identified numerous drug distribution networks, and uncovered at least 7 over dose deaths linked to online fentanyl sales.
The National Folk Festival is starting to accept vendor applications for this year’s festival in Salisbury. Organizers say the festival market will exclusively feature handmade creations from artists and craftspeople from across Delmarva peninsula.
A committee will select vendors based on a set of criteria including artistry/craftsmanship, distinctiveness, connection to state, regional, or local traditions. Officials say acceptable items include pottery, quilts, stained glass, photography, paintings, woodwork, locally made food products, and so on and so forth.
There are two application dates: March 1st and April 16.
A completed and successfully submitted festival marketplace vendor application.
o Applicants will receive email confirmation of their successful submission. If you DO NOT receive a confirmation, your application was not successfully submitted and therefore will not be considered. It is the vendor’s responsibility to ensure a successful application has been submitted.
o Festival organizers may request clarification; failure to provide requested clarification is grounds for rejection.
Four (4) current photographs of their artistic work to be sold.
One (1) current photograph of their booth sales operation.
A non-refundable $35 application fee must be submitted with your application by credit card.
Canal Street from Sixth Street to Rehoboth Avenue will be closed for two months starting this week for construction of the force main for the city’s ocean outfall project. Access to Canal Street will be for local homeowners only. A-Del Construction is digging a pit to go under Rehoboth Avenue in the area. Officials say the pipe will be installed underneath Rehoboth Avenue and Grove Park and come out on Henlopen Avenue, where the pipe will continue to the Deauville Beach parking lot.
Yesterday the Delaware General Assembly approving changes to public utilities in the state. While electric companies must obtain a certificate to operate in Delaware as a new electric transmission utility, other utilities providing water, wastewater, or other services are not required to obtain a similar certificate. The new bill also allows the Public Service Commission to assess the potential impact of projects on the state, and gives the commission the authority to revoke certificates in the future for good cause. The bill passed unanimously, and now heads to the Gov. Carney’s desk for action.
The Delaware State Senate passed a series of reforms aimed to help protect the aging population in Delaware.
One law is replacing outdated language in the state code such as “sanatorium” with the more modern “long-term care facility.”
Another aims to better protect residents of long term care facilities by updating the state code with consistent terminology and practices, to ensure that all Delawareans receiving long term care are protected from abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation.
Also, the Council on Services for Aging and Adults with Disabilities is being condensed from 22 members to 15 members. The new council composition must include an aging resident from each county of Delaware, four members of a public or nonprofit serving aging populations, a resident from each county with a disability, four agencies serving people with disabilities, and one member representing veterans issues.
All three bills passed the senate yesterday, and now head to Governor John Carney’s desk for Action.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan is not allocating any state funding to help Attorney General Brian Frosh sue President Donald Trump. According to the Baltimore Sun, the governor did not include funding for the $1 million and 5 lawyers the Maryland General Assembly promised the attorney general last year. Gov. Hogan instead suggesting the Attorney General use funds from the Consumer Protection Division to finance the litigation. Frosh said he would rather not choose between defending Marylanders against the Trump Administration and defending them against fraud schemes.
In Cape May – a woman arrested after threatening the local community college. According to Middle Township Police Department, on Tuesday Dara Kingsman, a 27-year old taking online courses at Atlantic Cape Community College, posted threatening messages on Facebook saying she wanted to blow up the college or New Jersey unemployment offices. Police say K-9 Units from Cape May County Sheriffs Department searched the ACCC campus, and found no cause for concern. Kingsman was arrested and charged with terroristic threats, and was released from custody without further incident.
Delaware State Auditor Tom Wagner will have competition in this year’s election. Former State representative Dennis Williams filed for candidacy to run as a Democratic Candidate fro Delaware State Auditor of Accounts. Williams was the state representative for Delaware’s 10th district from 2008 to 2014. He says that as a representative he fought for more transparency, accountability, and efficiency and will continue that fight as state auditor.
Maryland Congressman Andy Harris will hold a telephone town hall next Monday.
His office will call out nearly 50,000 constituents on the Eastern Shore, using numbers from the constituent services database. If you would like to add or change your number on the list you can use the following link: https://vekeo.com/andyharrismd/.
The call will take place Monday January 29th, between 5:30 and 6:30 PM.
The City of Seaford has a new City manager. Last night the Mayor and City council voted to promote the current assistant city manager Charles Anderson to the position. Anderson has been an employee with Seaford for the past 27 years, the last 10 of which he performed duties of assistant city manager. Anderson was also appointed to the Delaware Water Infrastructure Advisory Council twice by Governor Jack Markell. Mayor David Genshaw says Anderson brings unmatched knowledge of the city along with a sense of direction to the job. Anderson will begin his new position in March.
The Sussex County Council has approved an MOU (memorandum of understanding) between the county and the Sussex Sports Center Foundation for the design and construction of a sports facility. This includes a $1.5-million loan from Sussex County to the Foundation for the same purposes. This also authorizes the County Administrator and County Attorney to draft a legal contract between the County and the Foundation codifying the legal and financial terms of the $1.5-million loan. Councilman Rob Arlett voted against the MOU and explained that the $1.5-million loan is a “big ask” and while he likes the proposal for the Sports Complex, he would have liked to see this come about in a different way. Councilman IG Burton has questioned the proposal for the sports complex from the start and said that the county has never entered into a public-private partnership before, but feels this is a good use of Sussex County tax dollars. The vote to approve the MOU was 3 to 2 with councilmen Rob Arlett and Sam Wilson voting against.
The County Council also recognized the Cape Henlopen Girls Field Hockey team for their winning 16 and 2 season and winning the DIAA Division 1 State Championship. This is Cape’s 6th state title in the past 7 years.
Another MOU was approved by the Council with a unanimous vote that would make a clinical agreement between Nanticoke Memorial Hospital and Sussex County EMS, which will allow county paramedics to practice clinical skills within Nanticoke Memorial Hospital.
Additional action under Old Business, the council amended a Conditional Use appliction for Burton’s Pond, LLC that stipulates a roadway realignment of Route 24, Hollymount Road and Sloan Road and signalization by the end of the 1st phase of work. They also increased the Saturday work hours from 8am to 1pm – to 8am to 5pm. The amended motion to approve CU 2075 was unanimous. https://sussexcountyde.gov/LandUseApplications/cu-2075
Rehoboth Beach City Hall is doubling as an art gallery this week. Photographs from the Coastal Camera Club are on display along the second floor corridor. City Manager Sharon Lynn says it’s important for the city to support local arts, and this was one way to do it. Also in City Hall currently has an exhibit from the Rehoboth Art League and a mural installation from the Rehoboth Beach Museum. Lynn says the exhibit allows the city to bring that to life, share it with the public, and showcase the incredible creative talents of artists in the area. She encourages anyone wanting more information to visit coastalcameraclub.com, rehobothartleague.org, and rehobothbeachmuseum.org.
Teachers wanted for local area schools. The Indian River School District will host its annual Teacher Recruitment fair in Ocean City this February. District recruiters from across Delaware Maryland and Virginia gather to match potential teaching candidates to positions. Besides recruiters, there will also be workshops available for teaching candidates to attend.
The fourth annual fair will run from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and attract school district recruiters from all of Delaware and the eastern shores of Maryland and Virginia. The event is designed to match teacher candidates with anticipated K-12 vacancies in the participating school districts. Candidates will be able to interact with school leaders and will have the opportunity to apply for current and anticipated job openings.
Teacher candidates can register online at apllc.org. Individual registration fees are $15 in advance (prior to February 9) and $20 the day of the event. Teacher candidates should bring multiple copies of their current resume along with PRAXIS scores and proof of anticipated certification area.
The registration fee for schools and school districts is $225. This cost includes one six-foot table and lunch tickets for two representatives. The event will be held regardless of weather. The Clarion Resort Fontainebleau Hotel is located on 101 st Street in Ocean City, Md.
In Ocean City — Dukes Road will be closed from Route 54 to 146th Street from Wednesday night into Thursday morning. Officials say the road closure is needed so crews can perform horizontal directional drilling. The work will begin at 9 PM tomorrow night and wrap up by 6 AM Thursday morning.
UPDATED 1/23 11:15 AM – Delaware State Police releasing more details about the meth lab troopers busted last night in Felton. According to police, members from the Governor’s Task Force went to an abandoned residence on Canterburry Road in Felton to search for David Sharp of Felton, who had active warrants out for his arrest. When arriving to the home, troopers encountered Marlena Korona of Felton, who was exiting the driveway of the babandoned home. While trying to determine if there were any owners of the residence around, police saw Joshua Wilson of Harrington climb onto the roof in an attempt to evade police. Then at the front door, police took Mary Prichard of Dover and Brandi Luciano of Hartly into custody as well. The man police were actually looking for, David Sharp, was eventually found hiding in a bedroom closet.
While conducting a subsequent search of the home, troopers found an active meth lab on the second floor of the home. DNREC and HAZMAT crews responded to the scene to clean and ocntain the area. Little Creek Fire Department and DelDOT crews also responded to shut down the roadway.
All 5 suspects were arrested and charged with operating a clandestine laboratory, durg dealing, possession and more charges. Each were given bonds ranging from $2,500 – $17,500 and all are currently under Department of Correction custody.
Major activity in Felton last night after State Police busted a drug lab. Sometime before 10:45 PM Delaware State Police responded to the area of Andrews Lake Road and Pickwick Boulevard, busting a makeshift laboratory used to manufacture drugs. Police requested DNREC and Kent County HAZMAT Team to respond to the scene to help with cleanup. Details are still forthcoming; Delaware State Police say they will release more details later in the morning.
Military exercises on Maryland’s western shore may disrupt residents peace and quiet on Delmarva over the next few days.
Between now and Friday, Naval Air Station Patuxent River, based in St. Mary’s County, MD, is conducting simulated field carrier landing practices, to help prepare pilots for landing on aircraft carriers. Airspeed, altitutde and power will all be precisely choreographed in order to create real-world scenarios for pilots to practice in. Officials say this means that there will be increased activity and noise levels in and around the naval base that could disrupt residents.
So if you hear any sonic booms around the region this week, or notice an increase amount of naval jets flying around, there is a high likelihood it might be connected to this training.
Allen Harim officials say their Harbeson wasterwater plant was perfect in 2017. The company says in its first full year of operation the new upgraded wastewater treatment plant achieved 100% compliance with discharge parameters. According to a statement from Allen Harim, the new technology has been working so efficiently, many chemicals do not even register on monthly tests provided to DNREC. President and CEO Joe Moran says he is proud of the new treatment center, and that the next step will continue the company’s goal to be more environmentally friendly. In the near future, the company plans to construct a pipeline to an Artesian water recycling facility north of Milton to use waste water as spray irrigation on farm fields.
During Tuesday’s meeting, the Sussex County Council will honor the Cape Henlopen Field Hockey Team for their championship season. They will also discuss the proposed Sussex Sports Center Foundation proposal and MOU. In Old Business the council will revisit an ordinance amendment on the county’s zoning districts as well as several Conditional Use and Change of Zone applications. There are also three public hearings scheduled for the afternoon session. The County Council meets at 10am at the County Administration building on the Circle in Georgetown.
Corrections officials from the Sussex Community Corrections Center are looking for an offender who failed to return from an approved work pass on Friday. Officials say 24 year old Fred Williamson of Magnolia is black, 5’ 8” and 160 pounds with brown eyes and black hair with a tattoo on his left arm. He is being held on a charge of civil contempt. If you know where he is – contact police.
Dover Police are looking for a man involved in a domestic-related burglary and assault Saturday night. Police say just before 11pm Powell knocked on his ex-girlfriend’s door demanding entrance. The victim barricaded the doors and hid in a bedroom, but Powell broke a back window and entered. The victim went out a bedroom window and tried to run next door – Powell chased her and struck her in the face and chest – then left before police arrived. If you know where Powell is – contact Crime Stoppers.
This is School Choice week in Delaware – and across the country. In the First State there are events and activities planned statewide – including open house events at schools, school fairs and homeschool information sessions. Georgetown has issued a proclamation recognizing School Choice Week. The week gives Delaware families a chance to evaluate the best education settings for their children in the upcoming school year.
UPDATED – 12:30pm – Salisbury Police were called for an armed robbery on Mt Herman Road – and learned the male armored truck driver was robbed while filling an ATM machine with cash. Police say 4 suspects, all armed with handguns, approached the driver and demanded cash while tying his hands. Along with an undisclosed amount of cash, the suspects also took the driver’s company-issued handgun. Police say the suspects ran off on foot towards Route 50. Police K-9 and aviation were not able to locate the suspects. Police are looking for anyone who was in the area of SECU near Mt. Herman Road and Rt. 50 between 7-7:20am and saw anything suspicious. Contact Salisbury Police at 410-548-3165 or Crime Solvers at 410-548-1776.
Suspect 1 – Black man, wearing a black hoodie, black & gray pants
Suspect 2 & 3 – Black man, wearing all dark clothing, dark colored mask
Suspect 4 – no description
UPDATED – 10am – Some schools and businesses in the area of Mt Herman Road and Civic Avenue in Salisbury remain on lockdown while police comb the area for 4 armed suspects who held up an armored truck driver on Mount Herman Road around 7:15 this morning. Salisbury Police Captain Rich Kaiser tells WGMD the suspects are black and wore dark clothing and masks – they ran to the north across Route 50. The search is continuing by air and with help from K-9 units. If you see anything suspicious – contact 9-1-1.
UPDATED – 8:55am: Police in Salisbury are investigating an armed robbery of an armored truck driver on Mt Herman Road just before 8am. Police are looking for 4 black men wearing dark clothing and masks who ran to the north across Route 50. The Salisbury Nursing Home and Dove Pointe are on lockdown – and local schools have been ordered to shelter in place. If you see someone who matches the description of the suspects – call Salisbury PD or 9-1-1
In Salisbury The Salisbury Nursing Home and Dove Pointe are on Lockdown and Wi Hi staff and students are being told to shelter in place while police look for 4 armed black men involved in an armed truck robbery at about 7:45 that occurred at the BB&T Bank on Mt Herman Road near Civic Avenue. Police and K-9 are on the scene – they urge everyone to avoid the area. WGMD will have additional information as it becomes available.
You watch the crime shows on TV and they use DNA databases all the time to catch the bad guys. In real life – police do the same thing. Maryland State Police say their DNA database, which was established in 1994, is an invaluable tool to help reduce crime, apprehend criminals and exonerate the innocent. Officials say their database has now recorded 6000 positive comparisons. That’s when DNA from a crime victim or scene is matched with either a known offender sample or from another crime scene that’s on file in Maryland’s DNA database – or CODIS – the national database.