David Boraks

David Boraks is a WFAE weekend host and a producer for "Charlotte Talks." He's a veteran Charlotte-area journalist who has worked part-time at WFAE since 2007 and for other outlets including DavidsonNews.net and The Charlotte Observer.

The N.C. State Board of Elections says it will provide voting data to a special White House commission hunting for voter fraud. But amid concerns over the Trump administration’s June 28 request, the board says it will limit the information to publicly available voter data.

Duke Energy has withdrawn a request for state permission to use an additive at its coal-fired power plants that caused problems two years ago with Charlotte's drinking water. Environmental groups had sued, and celebrated the move. Duke said its decision was unrelated to the challenge.

https://youtu.be/EnEgGjs-SUc

U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis is used to fielding a lot of questions. It goes with the job. But many questions in the last two weeks have concerned his health since he passed out during a road race in Washington, D.C.

"I ran the fastest 2.5 mile race of my life. Unfortunately, it was a 3-mile race," he quips.  

As you can tell, Tillis says he’s fine. He says he just didn’t hydrate properly.

Of course, Tillis still gets asked about President Trump, Russia, health care, and immigration  - all topics he addressed with WFAE’s David Boraks.

Updated 3:07 p.m.

Warmer winter weather slowed Duke Energy's electricity sales in the first three months of the year. But profits still rose slightly, and executives say overall Duke is growing.  During the first quarter, the company also logged expenses from its October merger with Piedmont Natural Gas, and saw international revenues disappear, after the December sale of its Latin American operations.

Gov. Roy Cooper has vetoed a bill that would limit the amount of damages nearby property owners can collect if a court rules that smells from hog and poultry farms are a nuisance The governor also has signed a Republican-backed bill that rolls back some state regulations on the environment, business and government agencies.  

Duke Energy shareholders elected directors and voted on other questions Thursday at the company's first virtual annual meeting. Ballots and questions for the CEO were submitted in advance, or by clicking a button on a special web page.

Duke CEO Lynn Good sat on a blue-curtained set and looked toward the camera as she opened the meeting at an undisclosed location.

Duke Energy's annual meeting is Thursday, but don't try to go to uptown Charlotte and vote your shares. This year’s meeting will be at a secret location, beamed to shareholders via telephone and internet. Protesters say they'll be at Duke's headquarters anyway.  

May 1st is celebrated around the world as International Workers Day. In Charlotte and around the state, rallies showed support for a particular class of workers - immigrants. About 250 people marched in uptown Charlotte.

President Donald Trump wants to revive the coal industry and bring back coal jobs. But big coal buyers like Duke Energy are moving in the opposite direction. Duke's annual sustainability report calls for continuing to invest in cleaner energy sources, like natural gas and solar power. 

Updated 1:06 p.m.

A battle between Gov. Roy Cooper and state lawmakers over the state Court of Appeals has escalated, with the governor's appointment of a new judge Monday. Cooper got the chance to pick a Democrat after a Republican judge on the court retired early to protest his party’s efforts to shrink the court. 

Duke Energy plans to spend an extra $13 billion over the next decade to modernize the power lines and systems that distribute electricity in North Carolina. The upgrades include burying lines, adding technology to reduce outages, and giving customers more energy efficiency tools. 

House Bill 2 is no longer on the books. Gov. Roy Cooper signed a bill Thursday afternoon to repeal and replace the controversial law. The measure easily passed the state House and Senate earlier in the afternoon. Those who oppose the repeal include people who both supported and opposed House Bill 2.

It's way past the deadline set by Congress - 35 years past - but women are organizing in North Carolina and nationwide around a bit of unfinished business: ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment.

Several Republican state senators are trying again this session to limit the expansion of wind power, saying new turbines could interfere with military flights. The bill filed Wednesday, the Military Operations Protection Act of 2017, would halt permits for new wind farms until studies show they are safe.

North Carolina Congressman Patrick McHenry says Republican leaders are working to revise their party's health care plan to win approval. So far, moderates and conservatives are far apart. McHenry is playing a key role in trying to bridge their differences.

Business leaders in the region's immigrant communities say President Trump's tougher line on immigration is having a chilling effect on businesses and the broader economy. Fear and uncertainty are keeping some shoppers home and threatening to dampen investment in immigrant businesses - one of the fastest growing parts of the economy.

A federal appeals court has granted a request by the state Department of Environmental Quality to withdraw its legal challenge to former President Barack Obama's Clean Power Plan. The move comes amid a changing of the guard in both Raleigh and Washington, where the Trump administration has said it plans to cancel the rules.

Duke Energy is getting rid of in-person annual shareholder meetings. This year's meeting will be online only. Duke says it will save shareholders money and travel and reach more people. But Duke's critics don't like the idea.

Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan sees a lot of optimism over the U.S. economy following the election of President Donald Trump. But at a Charlotte World Affairs Council lunch Wednesday, he said North Carolina continues to lose out because of House Bill 2, the 2016 law that limits protections for LGBT people.

Duke Energy this summer will ask North Carolina regulators to raise the rates consumers pay on their electricity bills for the first time in four years. The rate hikes – at Duke’s two electricity subsidiaries in the state - would help pay for new plants, Hurricane Matthew recovery costs and coal ash cleanups.

A loss on the sale of its international operations contributed to an overall loss of $227 million at Duke Energy for the last three months of 2016. Duke on Thursday also reported that its profit for all of 2016 was down about 24 percent, to $2.1 billion.

But after adjusting for one-time expenses, the report was in line with analysts' expectations. Duke’s shares closed the day up 2.7 percent. 

Federal immigration agents have arrested more than 680 people nationwide since last week, including more than 100 in the Carolinas, in the Trump administration's first major crackdown on people in the country illegally.  U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly acknowledged the operations in a statement Monday, saying about three-quarters of those arrested were a threat to public safety.  But local immigration lawyers and immigrants say the new administration is sowing fear by casting a wider net.

A new Duke University study has found high levels of selenium in fish at two lakes near Duke Energy coal-ash sites in North Carolina. But Duke Energy says its own studies have found no problems with fish from the lakes.

Charlotte city officials say they're disappointed that lawmakers failed to repeal the state's controversial House Bill 2 during Wednesday's special session of the legislature. The repeal could come up again during the General Assembly's regular session next month, but some city council members aren't holding out much hope.

The General Assembly is meeting at this hour to discuss repealing House Bill 2, though the repeal effort was thrown into turmoil when rumors began circulating Tuesday that the Charlotte City Council had not fully repealed its entire nondiscrimination ordinance. WFAE’s David Boraks talks to host Nick de la Canal to help clear things up.

North Carolina's political scene has been full of surprises lately, like last week's unexpected special legislative session to limit the governor's powers. This week, it was the Charlotte City Council's turn. Monday, the council unexpectedly repealed an ordinance expanding legal protections for LGBT people. Morning Edition host Marshall Terry talks with WFAE reporter David Boraks, who’s been following the news out of both Raleigh and Charlotte.

Governor-elect Roy Cooper says Republican leaders of the North Carolina General Assembly will call a special session Tuesday to repeal House Bill 2. That follows a surprise move from the Charlotte City Council, which Monday morning voted unanimously to repeal its own expansion of the city’s nondiscrimination ordinance. Joining host Nick de la Canal for more on this is WFAE’s David Boraks. 


Updated 10 a.m.

In a flurry of filings Wednesday night, state lawmakers put forward more than two dozen bills to be taken up at an additional special session that opened Wednesday afternoon.  It's not clear how many will get hearings and pass the Republican-controlled legislature.  At least some appear aimed at handcuffing incoming Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper.  

Gov. Pat McCrory says he'll ask the General Assembly to approve $200 million in emergency funding during the special session that begins Tuesday. The money will help pay for cleanup and recovery after flooding caused by Hurricane Matthew in eastern North Carolina in late September and wildfires in western North Carolina since October.

Duke Energy has given state environmental officials details of how it plans to provide safe, permanent water supplies to people who live near the company's coal ash dumps.  The filings, for all but two plants, comply with a state law requiring the plans by Dec. 15.

Pages