Photo Album

They're back -- bigger than ever

County Council's administrative staff has returned from the Government Center in New Castle Corporate Commons to its former quarters on the eighth floor of the Redding Building in downtown Wilmington, but found it hard to recognize the place.

During Council's traditional August recess -- interrupted this year for a session and finance committee meeting -- the suite was reconfigured to provide for the six new members to be added after the general election on Nov. 2. Each one will be entitled to hire an aide and an assistant county attorney will be added to the staff to help handle the increased workload the larger Council is expected to generate.

Renovations, which included extensive work on the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, cost about $1.2 million.

The new members are scheduled to be sworn into office as soon after election day as the results are certified by Superior Court. There also will be a new Council president elected.

The public, however, will get its first look at the new digs on Sept. 7 when Council's executive and land use committees meet. Here is a Delaforum photo preview of what they will see.

The first general Council session will be on Sept. 14.

The long corridor, which shaped like a U lying on its side, has 13 exterior offices for Council members and the Council president. The six new members will be elected to four-year terms by voters in districts formed by dividing the present six districts in half, based upon population. Terms of the six incumbents, elected in 2002, have two more years to run.