Delaware Public Media
Laurel Fire Department

National Weather Service says F2 tornado hit Sussex County

It was a tornado that caused storm damage in parts of Southern Sussex County early Monday morning. The National Weather Service confirms an F2 tornado with an estimated maximum wind speed of 120 mph traveled more than 6 miles through the towns of Laurel and Bethel.

Read More
Delaware Public Media

New legislation proposes gun permits in Delaware

A newly-introduced bill would require Delawareans to get a permit to purchase firearms.

Read More

Buddy system for entrepreneurship

Jun 29, 2010

With Delaware ranked dead last in the nation in a 2007 state-by-state comparison of entrepreneurial activity, Delaware is looking for creative ways to become a seedbed for entrepreneurship.

Along with the state's multimillion-dollar Strategic Fund, which gives grants and loans to businesses, Delaware has created a new, more modest program it hopes will coax existing Delaware businesses to recruit new ones to the First State.

As a candidate for governor, Jack Markell campaigned against the idea that Delaware could afford to be a player in the high-roller nationwide bidding war to lure businesses here with princely financial incentives. "Delaware should not be in the business of picking new industries to bet on," instead focusing on making existing businesses stronger, he wrote in his 2008 book, Blueprint for Delaware.

Q & A with Professor Jim Butkiewicz

Jun 28, 2010

A total of $41.5 million from Delaware's Strategic Fund sweetened the deals that lured Fisker Automotive here to build electric cars at the former General Motors site in Newark and persuaded PBF Energy to buy the troubled Delaware City refinery, potentially restoring hundreds of jobs that were lost when the two plants closed down. The Markell administration has leaned heavily on the Strategic Fund, administered by the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO), to help existing businesses avoid job cuts, and to attract new businesses to the state.

[VIDEO] Levin on boosting business

Jun 28, 2010

How can Delaware attract next-generation Delaware businesses? Alan Levin, director of the Delaware Office of Economic Development, explains how the state tries to pick winners through the use of DEDO's Strategic Fund.


Strategic Fund: by the numbers

The Strategic Fund awards loans and grants to support existing Delaware businesses and attract new ones. Since January 2009, the bulk of the fund went to two recipients, Fisker Automotive and PBF Energy, to rescue jobs from devastating plant closures. How much went to support smaller businesses?

The manner in which our laws in Delaware have treated those convicted of crimes against the state and public have progressed from uncaring and punitive to an increasing understanding there is merit in encouraging redemptive changes within the individual who commits a crime. Thus it becomes suitable for the judicial system that punishes to be the instrument of government that also can work toward rehabilitation of the offender.

During the nationwide get-tough-on-crime mood of the 1980s, Delaware legislators reined in judges’ sentencing authority on certain drug crimes, perceiving judges’ rulings to be often arbitrary, inconsistent, or too soft.

Two decades later, the mood and the policy priorities have changed—in Delaware and around the country.

Faced with the high prison costs and modern law-enforcement needs, the General Assembly is revisiting the state’s drug code and attempting another major overhaul of the penalties for drug sales and possession.

“I just see miracles all the time,” Dagsboro psychotherapist Lee Dogoloff says about his work with drug offenders in rehabilitation. “Not everybody makes it, but more make it than don’t make it.”

Efforts to revise drug laws can crash on the rocks of party politics and passionate views about how to deal with drug offenders. Proposals to provide alternative sentencing meet criticisms of coddling addicts or being soft on crime.

So in an election year, with political eddies around every corner, how did consensus coalesce around a bill to roll back mandatory minimum drug sentencing in Delaware?