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.

Public health officials across North Carolina are continuing to use contact tracing in hopes of limiting spread of the coronavirus. When it works, they can pinpoint the origin of an outbreak, map it and ask people to quarantine. But area health departments have successfully traced only a few large outbreaks. More often, they meet resistance as people refuse to share information or follow quarantine requests. 

Duke Energy is urging state regulators to approve rate increases at its two North Carolina electric utilities, including money to pay for cleanups of toxic coal ash.   

State regulators and environmentalists have reached an agreement with chemical maker Chemours that adds new requirements for preventing contamination of the Cape Fear River.

Updated 4:15 p.m.

Police say three people were killed and 11 others injured after a shooting at a block party in northwest Charlotte early Monday. Five of the people injured were hit by cars. 

Demonstrations against systemic racism and police brutality are now in their third week in Charlotte. On Monday evening, about 75 protesters gathered at uptown's First Ward Park just before a light rain began to fall.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Capt. Brad Koch has been a regular at Black Lives Matter marches over the past two weeks, mostly welcomed. But when he showed up at a Charlotte Uprising rally Monday, protesters swarmed him, demanding that he leave. He cupped his hand to his ear, then raised his hand, palm upward, as if to suggest he couldn't hear them. Moments later, a protester shoved him and they ended up wrestling in the grass. It’s a sign of the mixed reaction to Koch's presence at the marches. 

Updated Sunday, May 24, 2020 

Gov. Roy Cooper's Phase 2 reopening took effect Friday at 5 p.m., letting North Carolinians sit down for a pint or glass of wine at their favorite restaurants. And at the last minute, state officials decided some breweries, and other distillers can open, too, according new guidance on the governor's website. But it appears you'll still have to wait to visit most bars.  

NASCAR is one of the first U.S. sports to return to competition amid the coronavirus pandemic, and it comes with big changes. No fans are allowed, and, at least for now, all the races are at or near the sport's hub in Charlotte. Officials hope excitement around the return to live racing will bring new fans. 

David Boraks / WFAE

People in Gaston County are debating the need for a continued statewide stay-at-home order as some county leaders say they'll support any businesses that want to reopen. Gov. Roy Cooper says reopening too early could cost lives. 

Duke Energy has set a goal of doubling the renewable energy it produces or buys by 2025. The new target is in the company's annual sustainability report out Tuesday.

Charlotte-based Truist Financial Corp. cut 800 jobs across the company during the first three months of the year. That came as the sixth largest U.S. bank started cutting costs following last year’s merger of SunTrust and BB&T.

Updated Friday April 17, 2020

Speedway Motorsports Inc. has laid off or furloughed more than 20% of its 1,200 employees at its seven race tracks nationwide, including Charlotte Motor Speedway. 

Bank of America's first-quarter profit fell 45% from a year ago, as the bank boosted reserves to cover expected loan losses by $3.6 billion. CEO Brian Moynihan says the country is at war with the coronavirus, and the bank is making sure employees can keep doing their jobs.

Black people account for a disproportionate share of COVID-19 cases across North Carolina. The question is why.  

State officials are scrambling to catch up with more than 355,000 new claims for unemployment benefits filed over the past two weeks. But even agency officials admit it can't happen fast enough. 

With many North Carolinians now under stay-at-home orders to keep the coronavirus from spreading, we're all relying on the internet for remote work and schooling. Dropped connections during meetings or classes are becoming more common, a sign that the internet is straining under the demand.

Solar advocates and dozens of consumers are asking state regulators to investigate after Duke Energy's online system for solar rebates crashed shortly after applications opened Jan. 2. 

There's lots of concern these days about new and unregulated chemicals in drinking water across North Carolina. A new study from Duke and North Carolina State universities finds many home water filters may not be protecting you from these compounds. 

With the federal government's withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, state and local governments in North Carolina have set their own ambitious goals for addressing climate change. Now, they're puzzling over how to carry out the big changes needed to reach those goals - such as switching to electric vehicles and shifting to more renewable energy. At least for now, it's still mostly data-gathering and discussion. 

Federal housing secretary Ben Carson unveiled plans Tuesday in Charlotte to roll back an Obama-era rule aimed at preventing racial segregation in housing. Carson announced a new rule that he says would increase housing choices for families. 

Major League Soccer says its Board of Governors will discuss “potential expansion markets, including Charlotte” at its meeting Thursday. 

A Duke University scientist says new data shows dangerous levels of a cancer-causing heavy metal occur naturally across North Carolina, and can be a concern in drinking water wells.

About 500 Duke Energy line workers, damage assessors and construction crews are headed to Florence, South Carolina, where they will be ready to restore any electricity outages from Hurricane Dorian.

North Carolina regulators have proposed new rules that would make clear that public utilities cannot charge customers for political and charitable contributions or lobbying expenses. The rules would apply to electric and gas utilities and large water and sewer systems. 

North Carolina regulators this week approved Duke Energy's latest 15-year energy plan as "adequate." But they also ordered the company next year to show why it still makes economic sense to keep old coal plants open and how it will help meet state goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

One day in the not-too-distant future, drivers of electric cars could pick charging stations the same way owners of gas guzzlers choose pumps now - by price. New rules being adopted around the country, including North Carolina, are clearing the way.

Duke Energy's second-quarter profit rose 64% from a year ago, as higher rates and other fees boosted revenues and hot weather drove energy use.

The Carolinas have not been hit by a hurricane so far this year, but researchers at N.C. State University are predicting a normal year with five to seven big storms in the Atlantic.

Updated: Friday at 2:45 p.m.

Friends and family members remembered the two students killed in Tuesday’s shooting UNC Charlotte – 19-year-old Ellis Reed Parlier of Midland, and 21-year-old Riley Howell of Waynesville.

Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney said Wednesday that Howell charged the shooter in the classroom, helping save lives.

Charlotte's reputation as a major banking center is getting a big boost. Southeastern regional banks BB&T of Winston-Salem and SunTrust of Atlanta are merging to create the nation's sixth largest bank. The combined company will have a new name, yet to be announced. And it will be headquartered in Charlotte.

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