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ILC Dover to add manufacturing site in Poland

University of Delaware photo.

ILC Dover LP, Newark, plans to break ground on a new 90,000 sq ft manufacturing site located in Gliwice, Poland.

Gliwice is a university and industrial city in southern Polland.

in response to continued growth within its life sciences business. The facility equipped with 20,000 square feet of cleanroom capability will manufacture initially single-use powder bags, single-use liquid bags, and single-use fluid transfer assemblies.

The new site will provide redundant supply capabilities and reduce the lead times for its European and Asian customers. Manufacturing will be consistent with the Company’s global quality system.

Wind power company survey vessels will be stationed off Delaware coast

According to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, visitors to Delaware Seashore State Park will see an increase in activity in the coming months as US Wind and Ørsted conduct research and collect data to determine the path forward for their wind projects.

The wind power companies had earlier confirmed that survey vessels will be in the area.

Both companies plan to update and refresh information collected in the Indian River Bay in 2016 and 2017 and to conduct geotechnical work in the Atlantic and at some land-based locations. Separately, a Maryland study has been announced on the environmental effects of wind farms.

It is likely that transmission lines from the Ørsted project will come inland in Delaware, possibly at the current site of the Indian River power plant. Indian River’s last coal-fired unit is slated for retirement

Delaware History Trail relaunched

Nanticoke dancers. Delaware Division of Tourism photo.

The Delaware Tourism Office re-launched the Delaware History Trail.

The relaunch offers visitors seven new locations and a unique online “passport” they can use to track their travels on the trail, which was initially launched in 2011.

In its updated form, the trail allows visitors to qualify for a new prize once they upload their photos of 10 of the 29 locations to VisitDelaware.com/history. Qualified participants will receive a limited-edition, 100-piece Delaware history-themed puzzle.

“For more than a decade now, the Delaware History Trail has provided an exciting way for people from inside and outside the state to get an inspiring look at Delaware’s long, rich story,” said Gov. John Carney. “This is a way to not only hear about the past, but to experience the places where history happened.”

Biden returns to Delaware for weekend stay as First Lady pays unannounced visit to Ukraine

President Joe Biden will fly out of Wilmington-New Castle Airport at around 9 a.m. Monday after a quiet weekend in Delaware.

He flew into Delaware on Friday after a trip to Kentucky, where he called on Congress to pass legislation like the Bipartisan Innovation Act, which aims to boost domestic manufacturing.

The president toured a manufacturing site in the Blue Grass State before spending the weekend at his home near Greenville.

Biden remained in Washington, D.C., last weekend to attend the White House correspondents’ dinner.

Delaware still in Covid-19 ‘low spread’ zone

Despite reports of higher case numbers and hospitalizations,  the Centers for Disease Control still lists Delaware as having low spread of Covid-19 cases. 

Click here for a link to the widget.

All three counties in Delaware are currently in the green zone, according to the CDC’s county widget.

By contrast, counties in New England and the Northeast are now in the CDC’s red zone, which indicates a risk of a high number of hospitalizations that could overwhelm local health care systems. (See accompanying map). In red-zone counties, the CDC recommends that people wear masks indoors.

Blamed for the surge in cases are new Covid-19 variants that are more transmissible than their predecessors.

Waters, UD open research lab at STAR campus in Newark

Waters Corporation and The University of Delaware opened Immerse Delaware, a new Waters innovation and research laboratory.

As part of their multi-year research partnership announced in October 2021, the lab opening is the first step in a collaboration with biopharma scientists in industry and academia to advance industrial processes for making biotherapeutics, a release stated.

The center is located at the University of Delaware Science, Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) campus, the former Chrysler plant site in Newark.

My take: Motorists not seeing savings from state’s low gas tax

Good evening,

We end the week on a less than happy note.

A while back, one of our readers suggested that one way to see whether Delaware’s low gas tax is passed on to motorists is to subtract the price at the pump from the state gas tax.

StateGas price State taxNet gas price
Delaware$4.3423¢$4.11
Maryland$4.3437¢$3.97
New Jersey$4.3742¢$3.95
Pennsylvania$4.4659¢$3.87
From AAA

As of today, Delaware motorists are paying a net price of $4.11 a gallon, compared to $3.97 in Maryland and $3.95 in New Jersey, two states with a substantially higher gas tax than Delaware.

Reasons for the disparity have remained unclear. AAA does not dive into the ins and outs of gas pricing here or elsewhere, and the chain stores don’t talk about such things.

Wegmans holding hiring event Monday as grocer prepares for fall opening in Barley Mill

Wegmans is holding a virtual hiring event on Monday in anticipation of a fall opening for its first Delaware store.

The supermarket chain, based in Rochester, NY, has been hiring staff for the store, with some employees training at their location in Concordville, PA.

The new store is at the intersection of Lancaster Pike and Barley Mill Road, a short distance from the home of President Joe Biden. The store is part of a mixed-use development at the former DuPont Co. site near Greenville.

The developer is Newport-based  Pettinaro, which also has shopping center, office, and apartment holdings in Greenville.

The store will employ around 450 people at the Wilmington store, a majority of whom will be hired locally. 

House passes bill that ends penalties for possessing a small amount of marijuana

The Delaware House passed a slimmed-down bill Thursday that would remove penalties for adult possession of a small amount of marijuana.

The bill is separate from a more controversial bill that would tax and regulate the sale of recreational marijuana.

Sponsored by Rep. Ed Osienski, D-Brookside, House Bill 371 would remove all penalties for possession of one ounce or less of marijuana, except for those who are under 21. Possession of more than one ounce of marijuana and public consumption remain misdemeanors.

Covid cases, hospitalizations on the rise

New Covid 19 hospitalizations rose to 100 after falling into the low 20s earlier this year, the Delaware Division of Public Health reported.

New cases and hospitalization remain well below the peak in January of this year when hospitalizations rose to more than 700 and new cases briefly hit the 3,000 mark

The other numbers:

– 471 new positive cases, bringing the overall total to 263,963.

Delaware Division of Small Business offers free market research tool

The Delaware Division of Small Business launched SizeUpDelaware this week. The site makes market research business intelligence available to small businesses.

Small business owners in Delaware can now access industry-specific and hyperlocal information to help them grow and make decisions using Big Data analysis. The research is individually customized for each company. By using the website service, small businesses can:

  1. – Rank their business performance compared to industry competitors
  2. – Discover potential customers and suppliers and better understand their competitive landscape.
  3. – Optimize advertising to target ideal customer segments

Chesapeake Utilities reports higher earnings

Dover-based Chesapeake Utilities Corporation reported higher earnings in the first quarter.

The company’s net income for the quarter ended March 31 was $36.9 million, a 7.2 percent increase over the $34.5 million reported in the same quarter of 2021.

Higher first-quarter earnings were driven by the 2021 acquisitions of Diversified Energy Company and the natural gas metering station in Escambia County, Fl., natural gas distribution and transmission pipeline expansions, regulated infrastructure programs, internal growth in the company’s natural gas businesses, as well as improved profitability in the company’s propane distribution business. Partially offsetting growth was lower propane customer consumption in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same period a year ago.

Click here for the full earnings report, including updates on projects on Delmarva.

Ørsted signs pact with unions covering offshore wind projects on East Coast

North America’s building trades unions and Ørsted announced a Project Labor Agreement (PLA) to construct the company’s U.S. offshore wind farms with a union workforce.

The National Offshore Wind Agreement (NOWA) was uthorized by 15 international union presidents and their local affiliates. The agreement covers all of Ørsted’s contractors and subcontractors that will perform offshore windfarm construction from Maine to Florida.

Ørsted, with its joint venture arrangements, has six offshore wind projects in development, including approximately 5,000 megawatts, enough to power more than two million homes.

Off the coast of Maryland and Delaware, Ørsted is developing Skipjack Wind, a 966-megawatt project.

Delaware gas price remains at record $4.40 a gallon for regular

The average Delaware gas price remained stable on Thursday after rising to $4.40 per gallon for regular, up about a dime from a week ago. It comes less than two months after prices broke the nearly 14-year record set in 2008. The price of diesel fuel is nearing $6 a gallon.

Nationally, the average retail price for a gallon of regular, self-service gasoline is two cents lower than the Delaware average. Delaware gas prices are typically below the national figure. Thursday gas prices can be a few centers lower, due to promotions at Shell and other stations.

Reasons for the disparity, despite Delaware’s lower gas tax, remain unclear but may center on tight supplies. See earlier opinion column.

Delaware average gas prices

PeriodRegularMid-GradePremiumDiesel
Current Avg.$4.399$4.753$5.006$5.995
Yesterday Avg.$4.401$4.770$4.991$5.994
Week Ago Avg.$4.287$4.637$4.885$5.822
Month Ago Avg.$3.945$4.420$4.668$4.961
Year Ago Avg.$2.891$3.278$3.481$3.175
From AAA

DNREC chief says air quality good but not good enough

DNREC photo

Delaware still has poor air quality days

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control reports that air quality has improved since the 1970s/

DNREC maintains a network of 11 permanent air monitoring sites throughout the state to track pollutants.

“Part of DNREC’s mission is to ensure clean air for all Delawareans. Clean air is especially important for our most vulnerable populations: children, older people, and people living with health conditions,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn Garvin. “Our monitoring network data shows our air quality is good overall, but good is not good enough. DNREC is committed to working continuously to make our air quality better.”

The air today is cleaner than when EPA first implemented control measures, known as the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS), under the Clean Air Act in the early 1970s. The MLK station, for example, monitors the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s six pollutants of greatest concern under the NAAQS: ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and two sizes of particulate matter.

Intuit settles suit over consumers paying for ‘free, free, free’ tax software

More than 2,000 lower income Delaware residents qualify for reimbursement under a settlement with tax preparation software giant Intuit.

New York Attorney General Letitia James and Delaware AG Kathy Jennings announced the multistate agreement with the owner of TurboTax, on allegations of deceiving millions of low-income Americans into paying for tax services that should have been free.

Intuit will pay $141 million in restitution to millions of consumers across the nation who were charged. The company did not admit wrongdoing. In Delaware, that works out to about $400,000 spread among more than 2,000 tax filers.

In addition, Intuit agreed to suspend TurboTax’s heavily advertised “free, free, free” ad campaign that lured customers with promises of free tax preparation services, only to force payment. All 50 states and the District of Columbia signed the agreement.

Wind turbine blades arrive at Port of Wilmington

GT USA photo

GT USA Wilmington welcomed the MV Pottersgracht, a general cargo ship and its load of 78 wind turbine blades. The blades, manufactured in Canada, are destined for a GE project in West Virginia

The Port of Wilmington carefully and successfully unloaded the wind turbine blades that are over 200 feet in length and weigh more than 13.5 tons each and transported them the short distance to the on-port storage area.

“We have handled wind blades many times now at the Port of Wilmington, but we never take anything for granted. It is always a delicate operation when handling cargo of this size and weight, so we work diligently with our International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA) partners, the vessel’s crew, and the trucking company, American Transport Systems,” said Joe Cruise, CEO at GT USA Wilmington.

Nation’s largest privately-held manufactured home community owner buys 3 Sussex properties

RHP photo

RHP Properties, the nation’s largest privately held owner and operator of manufactured home communities, has announced the acquisition of three manufactured home communities in Delaware.

It expands the company’s manufactured home portfolio to seven communities in the state and brings the company’s total of manufactured home communities to 311 nationwide. RHP has seven properties in Delaware.

The Rehoboth Beach portfolio includes the communities of Colonial East in Rehoboth Beach and Sussex East and Sussex West, both in Lewes. Combined, there are a total of 690 home sites, including mostly multi-section homes with garages. 

Colonial East is an all-age community located directly on Route 1, across from the Tanger Outlets Rehoboth – Surfside. It features a pool and clubhouse.

Personnel file, May 4, 2022

Carlson

Send your personnel news items to drainey@delawarebusinessnow.com

Carlson named Provost at University of Delaware

Laura Carlson, an administrator, educator, and researcher with more than 20 years of higher education experience at the University of Notre Dame, was named the 12th provost at the University of Delaware.

 A member of Notre Dame’s psychology faculty since 1994, she has served as vice president, associate provost and dean of the Graduate School since 2013.

Effective June 8, she succeeds Provost Robin Morgan, who announced her plans to retire last summer.

As the University of Delaware’s chief academic officer, Carlson will be responsible for the administration and continuous enhancement of all programs of instruction, research and service supporting the academic mission of the university.

Artesian Resources reports higher earnings

Artesian Resources Corporation reported earnings in the first quarter.

Net income for the three months ended March 31, was $4.5 million, a $0.3 million, or 6.6% increase, compared to net income recorded during the first quarter of 2021. Artesian is headquartered near Newark.

Revenues totaled $22.2 million for the three months ended March 31, 2022, $1.5 million, or 7.5%, higher than revenues for the three months ended March 31 of last year Water sales revenue increased $300,000 or 1.8%, primarily due to continued growth in the customer base. Other utility operating revenue increased by approximately $1.1 million primarily due to an increase in wastewater revenue related to the acquisition of Tidewater Environmental Services (TESi) in January 2022, the continued growth of the residential customer base in existing wastewater territories, and industrial wastewater service revenue associated with process wastewater operations that started in June 2021.