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Delaware legislators trying to rewrite state's gun code – 47abc

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Delaware legislators trying to rewrite state's gun code – 47abc


 

Delaware recently passed Permit-to-Purchase legislation through its House and Senate, with the bill only awaiting Governor John Carney’s to be acted into law. This came as a win for gun control advocates, as the bill will lengthen the process of acquiring a handgun with more paperwork and background checks. But now, Delaware legislators are taking a step back in order to address the big-picture problem with the state’s gun laws.

Delaware’s gun code stands as an outlier among the other 49 states. State Representative Jeff Spiegleman summarized it by saying “anything that fires anything” is technically considered a firearm in the state’s current language.

Rep. Spiegleman is the primary sponsor of House Bill 357. It seeks to redefine what the state considers a firearm. He said that enforcing the current broad definition can lead to unintended consequences: “What it really means is that we have a real chance of accidentally sending someone to jail for something that common sense says they didn’t do, but the law says they did.”

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It’s this tension between common sense and technical language that is at the heart of the bill. Delaware State Sportmen’s Association (DSSA) President Jeff Hague has been in favor of updating the code for nearly a decade. He was appointed by Speaker of the House Valerie Longhurst to the task force that met a number of times over the past year, with the goal of crafting legislation that would refine what Delaware code considers a firearm. Hague said, “As ridiculous as it may sound, even the air cannons they use for Punkin Chunkin would be considered a firearm under the definition.”

HB 357 creates a category separate from firearms labeled “projectile weapons” that would include things like crossbows, air bows, and even nail guns. All of these are objects that can be used as a weapon, but everyone agrees they should not be legally referred to as guns.

Hague drew parallels connecting projectile weapons to deadly weapons in how the law considers them: “It’s much like ‘deadly weapon’. Deadly weapon says ‘includes the following:’ but it’s not an exhaustive list. It’s essentially any weapon that can be used that causes someone’s death. It serves as a guideline [saying] these types of objects can be used and are considered dangerous and it’s illegal to use them in a criminal manner. Doesn’t mean you can’t possess them.”

Rep. Spiegleman said, “We crafted a best-practices approach to this that makes sure: if you rob a liquor store with one of these implements, it’s the equivalent of a firearms violation. But it’s not a firearm.”

The bill currently awaits the House Judiciary Committee.

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Delaware

SPS names new principals for Delaware Elementary, Wilson’s Creek Intermediate

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SPS names new principals for Delaware Elementary, Wilson’s Creek Intermediate


After the exits of two principals with long tenures, Springfield’s Delaware Elementary and Wilson’s Creek Intermediate will have new leaders next year.

The district announced Wednesday that Mark Davis II will be principal at Wilson’s Creek, succeeding the retiring Karyn Christy. She has been in the district for 22 years.

Lauren Hassell, assistant principal at Jeffries Elementary, will be the new leader at Delaware. She succeeds Stephanie Young, who will become the new principal at Hickory Hills Elementary and Middle School.

Hired by Springfield Public Schools in 2010, Hassall taught kindergarten and first grade for 11 years. She became a school community liaison at Jeffries in 2021.

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She has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Missouri State University.

“I am honored and so excited to become part of the Delaware community and to support our students in finding their sense of belonging and reaching their academic potential,” Hassell said in a news release.

Davis is a School Founders Fellow with New Schools for Alabama in Macon County, where he helped create and design a charter school focused on aviation, agriculture, science, technology, engineering, mathematics and art.

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According to the release, Davis has worked in small and large schools in both rural and urban areas including St. Louis and Jefferson City.

“My most exciting pursuit is to build on a legacy of academic excellence rooted in the development of knowledge through meaningful experiences; the ultimate goal of which is growing purpose-driven learners into citizens who are invaluable to our communities,” Davis said in the release.

More: ‘I don’t think I’m a hero’: SPS bus driver who fended off intruder honored by school board

He was a regional network administrator and integration manager for the KIPP Foundation and a program administrator of agriculture, food and natural resources for St. Louis Public Schools. Davis has also worked as a business instructor for Imagine College Preparatory High School in St. Louis.

Davis has a bachelor’s degree from Langston University School of Agriculture, a master’s degree from Webster University School of Business and a doctorate from St. Louis University School of Education.

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Wondering how to get your Delaware fishing license online? Plus, exemptions, surf-fishing

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Wondering how to get your Delaware fishing license online? Plus, exemptions, surf-fishing


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As a coastal state filled with ponds, streams and other bodies of water, Delaware is brimming with fishing opportunities.  

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But before you grab your fishing vest and tackle box and head out the door, remember that you can’t just show up and set up shop without a state fishing license.  

Here’s a guide to Delaware fishing licenses, including how and where to obtain one, restrictions, exemptions and more.  

Delaware fishing licenses 

In Delaware, a state recreational fishing license covers crabbing, clamming and recreational fishing in all First State waters, according to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

The DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife also administers permits, stamps and passes for recreational fishing and hunting, and for state wildlife areas. 

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Fishing licenses need to be purchased annually by recreational anglers. All proceeds from the issuance of fishing licenses contribute to a “special account for the purpose of matching and securing federal money allotted to Delaware under the provisions of the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act,” according to DNREC.

The funds support statewide conservation, management, restoration and enhancement of sportfish and the provisions for public use, which benefit from these resources.

Some of the fishing licenses, permits and stamps in Delaware include: 

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  • A Delaware Trout Stamp, which is needed for anglers fishing for trout. It costs $4.20 for residents ages 16 to 64, $2.10 for residents ages 12 to 15 and $6.20 for nonresidents ages 12 and older. Delaware residents ages 65 and older are exempt from needing a Delaware Trout Stamp.
  • Surf-fishing permits, which are needed to surf-fish on both peak and off-peak days in Delaware. Residents and nonresidents are exempt from fishing license requirements if they operate a vehicle with a valid Delaware surf-fishing vehicle permit and the vehicle is located on a designated Delaware State Park surf-fishing area. Surf-fishing annual passes are also available. 
  • Head boat and charter boat licenses, which are required for vessesls hired on a per-person or per-trip basis, respectively. Both the head boat and charter boat licenses cover paying passengers, the crew and the captain only while they are fishing aboard the vessel. These are issued directly from the Division of Fish and Wildlife.

DNREC’s Fish and Wildlife Natural Resources Police requires all boating and fishing events on the water to have a permit.  

Applications can be submitted online. Application submission does not guarantee event approval, and events conducted on state park land and water may require an entrance or admission fee. Activities like concessions, fundraising or other public events are not allowed without a special permit.

Surf-fishing FAQ: Delaware surf-fishing permits go on sale Tuesday. Reservations still needed for peak days

Fisherman Information Network numbers 

Along with a fishing license or resident boat fishing license, each angler will automatically have a Delaware Fisherman Information Network number issued to them at no cost. 

All Delaware anglers aged 16 or older are required to have an annual FIN number before fishing around the state.  

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If you are exempt from fishing license requirements in Delaware, you may need to apply separately for a FIN number through Digital DNREC, an online permitting system,

How can I get my Delaware fishing license? 

Delaware fishing licenses can be purchased online or in person.

Digital DNREC is where recreational licenses, permits, passes and stamps can be purchased online. Fairly new, this system allows recipients to create user accounts and profiles to manage their licenses and permits.

For purchasing in person, visit the licensing desk inside DNREC’s Richardson and Robbins Building at 89 Kings Highway in Dover or an authorized license agent.

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Where can I get my Delaware fishing license? 

If you want to obtain your recreational license, permit pass or stamp in person, here are places in Delaware that offer this service. Each location offers fishing, hunting and Conservation Access Passes unless otherwise noted.  

New Castle County 

  • Al’s Sporting Goods, 200 North Market St., Wilmington, (302) 655-1511. 
  • Cabela’s, 1100 Christiana Road #1410, Newark, (302) 266-2300. 
  • Captain Bones, 3195 South Dupont Highway, (302) 378-4200. 
  • Dick’s Sporting Goods, 100 Center Drive, Newark, (302) 738-8322 or 1000. Brandywine Parkway, Wilmington, (302) 477-9577. 
  • Master Baiter’s, 775 South Dupont Highway, Unit 2, New Castle, (302) 834-2248.  
  • Walmart, 705 Middletown Warwick Road, Middletown, (302) 449-1254; 117 Walton Blvd., New Castle, (302) 324-0900; or 1251 Centerville Road, Wilmington, (302) 683-9312. 

Kent County 

  • Bowers Bayside Bait, 145 Hubbard Avenue, Frederica, (302) 682-0043. This location only sells fishing licenses.  
  • Carlisle’s Marine, 49 Artisan Drive, Smyrna, (302) 389-0100. 
  • Dick’s Sporting Goods, 1365 North Dupont Highway, Suite 6000, Dover, (302) 678-9160. 
  • Smith’s Bait and Tackle, 500 Denny St., Leipsic, (302) 744-9140. 
  • Oaks Outdoors, 3544 Williamsville Road, Houston, (302) 424-2277. 
  • Smyrna Community Hardware, 456 W. Glenwood Avenue, Smyrna, (302) 653-1144. 
  • Smyrna Sporting Goods, 4 South Main St., Smyrna, (302) 653-7073. 
  • Walmart, 263 Walmart Drive, Camden, (302) 698-9170; 36 Jerome Drive, Cheswold, (302) 674-2159; or 939 North Dupont Highway, Milford, (302) 422-2854. 

Sussex County 

  • Bethany Auto Parts & Marine, 13 Atlantic Avenue, Ocean View, (302) 539-0555. This location only sells fishing licenses. 
  • Bob’s Marine Service, 3188 Roxana Road, Ocean View, (302) 539-3711. This location only sells fishing licenses. 
  • G&E Hardware, 30244 Cedar Neck Road, Ocean View, (302) 539-1448.  
  • H. C. Layton & Son, 406 Market Street, Bridgeville, (302) 337-8540.  
  • Hook ‘em and Cook em’ Bait & Tackle, 39401 Inlet Road, Rehoboth, (302) 226-8220.  
  • Hook ‘em and Cook ‘em Outfitters, Highway 1, York Beach Mall, South Bethany, (302) 539-6243. 
  • Hopkin’s Gun Shop, 18647 Josephs Road, Milton, (302) 684-4878. 
  • Lankford’s Gun Shop, 614 West Stein Highway, Unit 2, Seaford, (302) 536-7077. 
  • Laurel Community Hardware, 1001 South Central Avenue, Laurel, (302) 280-6822. 
  • Lewes Harbour Marina, 217 Anglers Road, Lewes, (302) 645-6627.  
  • Lingo Marine, 121 Delaware Avenue, Millsboro, (302) 934-9877. This location only sells fishing licenses. 
  • Old Inlet Bait & Tackle, 25012 Coastal Highway, Rehoboth, (302) 227-7974. 
  • Rick’s Fishing Outdoor, 26019 Julias Lane, Long Neck, (302) 945-9245. This location only sells fishing licenses. 
  • Rudy Marine Inc., 32606, Dupont Blvd., Dagsboro, (302) 999-8735. 
  • Sam’s Fishing Tackle, 14260 Teattown Road, Greenwod, (302) 424-0197.  
  • Short’s Marine, 32415 Long Neck Road, Millsboro, (302) 945-1200.  
  • Tiderunners 3, 105 Anglers Road, Lewes, (302) 827-2533. This location only sells fishing licenses. 
  • Vines Creek Marina & Tackle, 32213 Blue Crab Road, Dagsboro, (302) 732-6043. 
  • Walker’s Marine, 26912 Walker Road, Seaford, (302) 629-8666. 
  • Walmart, 4 College Park Lane, Georgetown, (302) 854-9454; 18922 Rehoboth Mall Blvd., Rehoboth, (302) 644-8014; or 22899 Sussex Highway, Seaford, (302) 628-1668. 

Fishing license exemptions and exceptions 

Delaware’s fishing and hunting regulations and state law provide several exemptions and exceptions to fishing and hunting licensing requirements, including:  

  • While surf-fishing permits are not required for residents and nonresidents who are the operator of a vehicle with a valid Delaware sur fishing vehicle permit, other occupants in tow must have a resident or nonresident fishing license if they are fishing.  
  • Seniors who are Delaware residents aged 65 years or older do not need to meet fishing license requirements. They must have proof of age and residency.  
  • Children under 16 years old do not need to meet fishing license requirements or the FIN requirement. 
  • Residents who own or live on a farm in Delaware containing 20 or more acres, and members of their immediate family living on the farm, may fish on that farm without a fishing license. The same applies for nonresidents who occupy farms in Delaware containing 20 acres and are engaged in the science of husbandry. Nonresidents who own but are not occupants of a farm in Delaware containing 20 or more acres, and where the science of husbandry is practiced, may fish on the land if the owner gives them written permission, or if fishing is permitted in the written lease. The same applies to their immediate family.  
  • Anyone aged 16 and up who does not have an individual recreational fishing license and is fishing on a boat where the owner purchased a recreational boat fishing license, does not have to purchase a fishing license while fishing on board.  

Other exemptions apply for the following criteria and can be obtained by calling the Division of Fish and Wildlife at (302) 739-9918: 

  • Any Delaware resident who is legally blind.  
  • Any Delaware resident who fishes in a fee-fishing facility, registered as such with the Department of Agriculture.  
  • Any Delaware resident that is a patient in a rehabilitation hospital under the Department of Health and Social Services.  

For more information, contact Trish Virdin, the licensing coordinator, at (302) 739-9918 or visit DNREC’s FAQ page about fishing licensing.https://dnrec.delaware.gov/fish-wildlife/licenses/fishing-license-questions/  

Got a tip or a story idea? Contact Krys’tal Griffin at kgriffin@delawareonline.com.

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Hall-Long receives support from 14 past, present lieutenant governors in run for Delaware

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Hall-Long receives support from 14 past, present lieutenant governors in run for Delaware


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Delaware Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long has been endorsed by 14 current and former lieutenant governors in Hall-Long’s pursuit of the Democratic nomination for governor this year. 

A letter from the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, signed by 14 former and current elected officials, has endorsed Hall-Long for Delaware governor, pointing to the bureaucrat’s efforts to revive the lieutenant governors association from “dormancy.”

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Supporters include current Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. Austin Davis, Connecticut Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz, and Vermont Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman. The signatories of the letter said they’ve seen Hall-Long’s leadership firsthand.

“In 2022, as chair of the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, Hall-Long helped us protect 11 incumbents and flip two seats from red to blue,” the officials wrote in their letter of endorsement. “Thanks to her stewardship, the number of Democratic lieutenant governors across the states and territories grew to 25.”

The association said they now have “the most diverse group of elected officials in the country,” with 75% of current Democratic lieutenant governors being women or people of color.

CAMPAIGN FUNDRAISING: Meyer leads among Democratic gubernatorial candidates, raising over $675K in donations

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“For as long as I have known Hall-Long, she has been a tireless advocate for the people of Delaware,” association Chair Peggy Flanagan said in an emailed news release Tuesday. “As chair of the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, I have worked closely with her on a host of critical issues from investing in public education to paid family medical leave and more. As governor, I know she will always put Delawareans first.”

Hall-Long will host a “campaign kickoff rally” starting at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the AFSCME Council 81 Hall located at 91 Christiana Road in New Castle. Gov. John Carney will join the celebration, and the campaign said there will be additional endorsements announced at that time.

Hall-Long files candidacy for Delaware governor

About a week ago, Hall-Long officially filed for candidacy in the Delaware governor’s race. 

LATEST: Delaware Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long files candidacy for governor, the 3rd Democrat to file

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She will face off against New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer and former Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Collin O’Mara in the Democratic primary in September. The lieutenant governor, shortly after announcing her intentions to run for governor, received the endorsement of Carney along with support from various labor unions.

Got a tip? Contact Amanda Fries at afries@delawareonline.com. Follow her on X at @mandy_fries.



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