Ben Bradford

Reporter

Ben Bradford is a city kid, who came to Charlotte from San Francisco by way of New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles. Prior to his career in journalism, Ben spent time as an actor, stuntman, viral marketer, and press secretary for a Member of Congress. He graduated from UCLA in 2005 with a degree in theater and from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism in 2012. As a reporter, his work has been featured on NPR, WNYC, the BBC, and Public Radio International.

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Local News
5:15 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Concord Drug Bust Uncovers 4,000 Lbs. Of Marijuana

A Cabarrus County newspaper has reported one of the largest drug busts in years. According to the Independent-Tribune of Concord, two tons of marijuana were seized in April, as part of an FBI investigation into an international drug ring running through the county.


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Local News
9:06 am
Fri May 24, 2013

Lawsuit Against Duke Ash Ponds Is A Reversal For State

Riverbend Steam Station
Credit Duke Energy

A recently shuttered coal plant sits on the Catawba River in Gaston County, and state environmental officials say it’s seeping heavy metals precariously close to Charlotte’s water supply. This week, the N.C. Division of Water Quality added that coal plant to a lawsuit against Duke Energy—the plant’s owner. The state has had evidence of violations for two years, but declined to act until recently.


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Business
11:20 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Charlotte, Future Capital Of Big Data?

Tresata and Harris Teeter sponsored a "hackathon" in Charlotte, where competing teams used Big Data to find trends in supermarket sales. Here, Tom Horton demonstrates his team's findings. A Harris Teeter spokeswoman said one reason for the event was to find talent the company may want to add to its analytics team.
Credit Ben Bradford

When it comes to the technology industry, Charlotte isn't usually listed as a hub. That title goes to places like Silicon Valley, New York, Boston and Seattle. But, Charlotte shows a lot of promise in the emerging technology field known as "Big Data."


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Local News
9:59 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Hopes High But Progress Slow At Kannapolis Biotech Campus

A view of the North Carolina Research Campus from a window in the Core Laboratory building. After five years, the campus remains mostly unbuilt.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

When billionaire David Murdock opened the North Carolina Research Campus five years ago, his goal was to create a global biotechnology center in Kannapolis and to replace the thousands of jobs lost when Cannon Mills—formerly the city’s largest employer—closed. Murdock has poured upwards of $600 million into development of the NCRC, but today, there are only a handful of companies and few jobs compared to his sweeping vision. This week, Murdock donated another $50 million to the endeavor. Outside of Murdock’s millions, there are few signs of growth, but many are still betting on it.


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Local News
12:26 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Property Tax Hike Included In Carlee's Budget Proposal

Credit City of Charlotte

Charlotte City Manager Ron Carlee wants council to approve a property tax increase to help fund a Capital Improvement Plan.

Otherwise, the budget he proposed Monday night looks  pretty much like last year's budget. It totals just just under $2 billion, or 1.5 percent above this past year. That increase accounts for an estimated rise in costs and a slight pay raise for city employees, but otherwise keeps spending the same as last year. Here’s the full breakdown:

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Local News
10:17 am
Tue May 7, 2013

Council Scolds Consultant Over Airport Study Findings

Bob Hazel
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

In their fight to retain control of the Charlotte airport, the city council paid Bob Hazel of consulting firm Oliver Wyman $150,000, to study the airport and conclude the best form of governance—the current form of city control or an independent authority, as state lawmakers are pushing for. Hazel said an authority, and the city council didn’t like that answer. They told him so at Monday’s council meeting.


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Politics
8:30 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

Fracking Commission Delays Chemical Disclosure Rules

One of the most contentious questions about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, is what companies should be required to disclose about the mix of water and chemicals pumped into the ground during the process. 


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Local News
7:24 pm
Thu May 2, 2013

Clean Energy Advocates Inundate Duke Energy Annual Meeting

Protesters begin to set up outside Duke Energy headquarters before the annual shareholder meeting.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

Duke Energy hosted its annual shareholder meeting in Uptown Thursday, one day before the company releases its first quarter earnings report. CEO Jim Rogers pronounced the company healthy and profitable, but the meeting was also a rare opportunity to berate the CEO.


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Local News
8:30 am
Thu May 2, 2013

Speeding Around On Vegetable Oil

Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

High gas prices, the threat of climate change, and new technology have spurred increased  looks at alternative fuels, especially hybrids, electric cars and biodiesels. But a community in Charlotte has opted for a less conventional, do-it-yourself solution—they run their fleet on used vegetable oil from area restaurants.


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Local News
8:17 pm
Sun April 28, 2013

Obama Will Appoint Foxx Transportation Secretary

Mayor Anthony Foxx

White House officials have confirmed that President Obama will appoint Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx as the next Secretary of Transportation--a big leap onto the national stage for the local politician.

Audio Pending...

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