Sussex County News

Sussex County, Delaware

Population:

  • 156,638 (2000 Census)

County council meetings

  • Tuesdays, 10 a.m. (second Tuesday of each month), council chambers, county administrative building; council meetings and other public meetings held in the council chambers are broadcast over the Internet

Planning & Zoning meets:

  • Thursdays, two to four times per month, 6 p.m.; occasional Wednesday afternoons; council chambers, county administrative building

Board of Adjustments meets:

  • Mondays, two to four times per month, 7 p.m.; council chambers, county administrative building

Elections:

  • Council members elected by district, to four-year terms; council president selected from among council members

County administrative building:

  • 2 The Circle, Georgetown, DE 19947; (302) 855-7700

Web site

General e-mail inquiries

County Council 2013-2014:

  • Michael Vincent, Council President, District 1
  • Samuel Wilson Jr., Council Vice-President, District 2
  • Joan Deaver, District 3
  • George B. Cole, District 4
  • Vance C. Phillips, District 5

County Administrator:

  • Todd Lawson

Council Administrative Staff:

  • Robin Griffith

Finance Director:

  • Gina Jennings

Public Information:

  • Chip Guy

Public Works Director:

  • Michael Brady

Director of Planning & Zoning:

  • Lawrence Lank

Director of Planning & Zoning Commission:

  • Robert C. Wheatley

Police:

  • Delaware State Police Troop 4

Sheriff:

  • Jeffrey Christopher

Emergency:

  • 911

Non-emergency police contact:

  • (302) 856-5850

Sewer service:

  • Sussex County provides central sewer service to communities throughout the county, while some private property owners and other communities utilize on-site septic or sewer systems of their own.

Opposition voiced to County’s revised proposed sign ordinance

Following a revamping of the original draft ordinance to amend the Code of Sussex County related to signs, a new series of public hearings is being held by the Sussex County Council. This week members of the public who spoke at the first hearing voiced opposition to the proposed ordinance as written.

Be informed and prepared in case of emergency

September is National Preparedness Month, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The campaign aims to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to all types of emergencies, including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks.

In Sussex County, residents have access to local resources to help them stay safe.

November ballot taking shape

Primary elections were held earlier this week to determine what candidates would represent their political parties in the November general election.

Democrat Lisa Rochester won the Democratic spot for Delaware’s lone representative in Congress, with 43.76 percent of the vote. She will be running against Republican Hans Reigle, Green Party candidate Mark Perri and Libertarian Scott Gesty.

County takes comments from residents on all-hazards plan

As part of its five-year update to Sussex County’s All Hazard Multi-Jurisdictional Mitigation Plan, the Sussex County Emergency Operations Center recently invited county residents and property owners to attend a public meeting to review and comment on the final draft of the plan.

SCI investigators intercept contraband Suboxone, arrest nine

Investigators at the Sussex Correctional Institute (SCI) in Georgetown recently initiated a proactive search regarding the introduction of Suboxone into the facility. The investigation, known as “Operation Sunkist,” resulted in the arrest of several sentenced inmates, as well as multiple civilians who were allegedly sending the contraband through the mail.

County approves bid for Rehoboth EMS facility

In February of 2015, Sussex County purchased 3 acres of land on Plantation Road in Rehoboth Beach to be used for the Medic 104/EMS 100 facility. At its Aug. 23 meeting, Bobby Schoonover, technical services division manager, provided an update to the county council regarding the project.

Public invited to comment on revised sign ordinance

The public will have a second chance to give comment on recommended changes to the Sussex County sign regulations. At its Aug. 9 council meeting, the county council voted 5-0 to reintroduce a proposed ordinance to amend its code related to signs.

Democrats hold picnic, honor Deaver

Joan Deaver, the lone Democrat on the Sussex County Council, was honored July 12 at the Annual Eastern Sussex Democrats Picnic, held at Hurdle Farm near Harbeson. Deaver recently announced she is stepping down after serving two terms as councilwoman for District 3.

County to hold public hearings on proposed sign ordinance

The Sussex County Council plans to hold a new set of public hearings on a proposed ordinance to amend its code related to signs.

“There has been a lot of conversation,” said Council President Michael Vincent. “I think it’s easy to get mixed thoughts. Since we’ve had our public hearing, we’ve had a lot of meetings…

County looks to push affordable rental housing

Proposed modifications to the Sussex County Rental Program were presented to the Sussex County Council on Tuesday, July 26, by Brandy Nauman, the County’s housing coordinator and fair housing compliance officer.

Robert M. Lankford, 83

Robert M. Lankford, 83, passed away on Thursday, July 21, 2016, after a battle with cancer. He was born Aug. 29, 1932.

County makes progress on sign ordinance

After holding a special meeting this week to focus solely on signage regulations, the Sussex County Council has seemingly addressed all items related to its recently introduced sign ordinance.

County to hold special signage meeting on July 11

The Sussex County Council will hold a special meeting on Monday, July 11, at 10 a.m. to discuss an introduced ordinance that would amend the county code regarding signage.

DSP targeting resources at addressing theft, DUI offenses

State police are reporting some success in addressing the most common crimes in Sussex County — burglary and theft — as well as preventing motor-vehicle accidents, according to Delaware State Police Capt. Rodney M. Layfield, commander of Troop 4 in Georgetown, who discussed local trends in crime in an update to the Sussex County Council at its June 28 meeting.

County chips away at proposed signage ordinance language

With all five members of the Sussex County Council seated at the dais earlier this week, after last week tabling discussions related to a sign ordinance introduced in April, signage was discussed at length by the council and County staff.

Commercial waterman faces charges for conch violations

DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police arrested a commercial waterman June 3 for nearly 300 fishing violations — most of them for illegal taking of knobbed conch — after boarding his vessel for a no-wake violation near the Lewes public boat ramp on May 31.

County officials discuss impacts of potential state legislation

At the Sussex County Council’s regular meeting on June 14, County Administrator Todd Lawson updated the council on legislative happenings he said might impact the County.

House Bill 396, or the Bring New Jobs to Delaware Act, would impacts all three counties, said Lawson, by allowing each county to enact an expedited review process for land-use projects.

County planning director Lank to retire after 47 years

Sussex County’s planning director has a new plan under development — retirement, after nearly a half-century of public service. County Planning & Zoning Director Lawrence B. Lank will retire Dec. 1 from the position he has held since 1985, overseeing a staff of nearly a dozen employees in one of the County’s highest-profile departments.

County officials continue signage discussions

The Sussex County Council this week discussed at length a proposed ordinance to amend the County Code related to signs.

Drivers cautioned to watch out for terrapins crossing area roads

Drivers are being urged to use extra caution when traveling Delaware’s coastal highways through June and July. As the summer gets under way, female Diamondback terrapins are crossing Route 1 to lay their eggs in the soft sand of the ocean dunes, and many are killed in the process.

Rt. 54 sidewalk improvements subject of June 6 public workshop

The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) invites the public to attend a public workshop to receive information about the Final Design for various proposed lighting, striping, and pedestrian improvements on Route 54 in Fenwick Island.

‘Mighty Mo’s’ big gun moved to permanent resting place at Fort Miles

Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: The ‘Mighty Mo’ gun is hoisted, ready to be mounted at Fort Miles at Cape Henlopen State Park.Coastal Point • Tyler Valliant: The ‘Mighty Mo’ gun is hoisted, ready to be mounted at Fort Miles at Cape Henlopen State Park.After wartime service in the Pacific aboard the “Mighty Mo” — the battleship U.S.S. Missouri — one of the ship’s nine original 16-inch guns that shook the enemy fleet with 2,700-pound shells was moved last week to a permanent display within historic Fort Miles at Cape Henlopen State Park. The big gun was mounted on the Missouri when the Japanese surrender was accepted about that ship on Sept. 2, 1945, ending World War II.

“The U.S.S. Missouri’s gun is an important piece of American history that will draw families and tourists to Fort Miles and the beautiful shores of Cape Henlopen State Park,” said Gov. Jack Markell.

“Bringing new amenities and historical treasures to our parks not only provides an economic boost to the state, but is one the reasons why Delaware State Parks was recognized nationally this year with the Gold Award as the best park system in the nation.”

Heroin Summit discusses Sussex epidemic

The Communities that Care Summit, cohosted by the Sussex County Health Coalition and the Delaware Department of Substance Abuse & Mental Health, was held at Crossroads Community Church this week, focusing on an open discussion regarding the heroin epidemic in Sussex County.

The summit’s keynote speaker was John Rittenhouse of SHIFTDestiny.

Sign ordinance discussed before Sussex County Council

Signs were a main topic of discussion at this week’s Sussex County Council meeting, as the council held its first public hearing on a proposed ordinance to amend the Code of Sussex County related to signage, as part of what has been a year-long discussion of signage in the county.

Tickets available for Sussex County Prayer Breakfast

On Tuesday, June 14, people will gather together to pray for local communities at the Sussex County Prayer Breakfast. This year, the Sussex County Prayer Breakfast will host Bill Alexson, son of former Brooklyn Dodger baseball player Andrew “Doc” Alexson.