Culver says council’s actions will delay school project

What seemed like a basic power struggle between the county’s executive and legislative branches has exploded into a government-choking drama that could delay construction of a planned county school. After the County Council on Tuesday declined to confirm County Executive Bob Culver’s recently appointed Finance Director, then blocked his paying unconfirmed employees and restricted his […]

Wicomico Council seeks to cut executive’s office budget

Wicomico Council members knew they were venturing down an awkward budget road last week when they discussed cutting County Executive Bob Culver’s inter-office spending plan by a whopping $85,000. Then, while repeatedly pausing to make mention of their predicament, they plowed ahead anyway. The seven-member legislative branch met last Thursday to go through the county’s […]

Wicomico Council dismisses County Attorney

Rocketing itself into uncharted governmental space on Tuesday, the Wicomico County Council confirmed county department head appointments the County Executive hasn’t made and used a super-majority vote to dismiss the hand-selected County Attorney. In its unprecedented actions, the council used its stipulated powers to act independently on the attorney’s position in government and used implied […]

Wayne Strausburg on a Wicomico revenues hunt

For a long, long time in Wicomico County, the County Council’s members served as both the legislative and executive arms of government, but hired a single person to act as their administrative head. Also for a long, long time, Matt Creamer served in that administrator’s role, acting as the council-appointed leader of the county’s administration. […]

Wicomico council headed for vote on department heads

The County Council/County Executive conflict around the reappointment of department heads has entered new and strange ground, with more developments occurring nearly every day: •After the charter-mandated six-month deadline passed last Monday, May 6, the council met late Tuesday night in open session with its own attorney, who advised that members could vote on each […]

Leaders get an earful on Mardela renovation delay

Those in support of a new Mardela Middle & High School — and disappointed County Executive Bob Culver removed the cost from the Capital Improvement Plan — crowded into the Council Chamber Tuesday night, spilled into the hallway and adamantly objected. “Mr. Culver, I want to see you put Mardela back into the CIP … […]

Deadline passes with no reappointments consensus

Wicomico County’s council members and executive have escalated their public dispute regarding the reappointments of officials who lead the departments that operate county government. In response to coverage of an April 16 meeting as reported in last week’s Salisbury Independent, the County Council — acting as a single entity — formally disputed County Executive Bob […]

Culver, council on collision course over appointments

A power struggle is boiling over between Wicomico County’s executive and legislative branches and no one knows who the winner will be or what fallout might result. Portions of the county’s charter, adopted during the formation of the County Executive system of government more than a decade ago, make clear the oversight responsibilities the County […]

Culver’s budget includes no tax hikes, funds education

County Executive Bob Culver has sent a fiscal 2020 budget to the County Council that leaves property taxes untouched, fully funds the school board’s operational needs and awards county employees a 2 percent pay hike. Even more so than in most budget years, the spending proposal that would take effect on July 1 was drafted […]

Wicomico executive, council tensions appear to ease

When the County Council met in a work session Tuesday, the past two weeks of derision between the body and the County Executive’s Office was undoubtedly on everyone’s mind. Within about 90 minutes, however, the combatants appeared to be ignoring their differences and the county government was conducting business as usual. As one unnamed council […]