David Boraks

Environmental Reporter

David Boraks covers Energy and the Environment and other topics for WFAE. He also has worked as a "Charlotte Talks" producer (2015-16) and as weekend host (2007-2016). He's a veteran Charlotte-area journalist who previously published the online community news network that included DavidsonNews.net and CorneliusNews.net (2006-2015).

He also has worked for American Banker (2000-2005), The Charlotte Observer (1993-2000), The China News in Taipei (1991), The Cambridge (Mass.) Chronicle (1989-1991) and The Hartford Courant (1986-89).

David has a bachelor's  degree in history from Cornell University and a master's degree from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn.

Major League soccer has picked four cities as finalists for two expansion teams to be announced by the end of the year.  Charlotte and Raleigh didn't make the cut.

NCDEQ

Former state environmental secretary Donald van der Vaart has resigned from the Department of Environmental Quality, amid an investigation.  A DEQ spokeswoman confirmed his departure Wednesday.  

Park rangers would get new radios in the project, which would allow them to communicate directly with nearby public safety agencies - something they can't do now.
National Park Service

Great Smoky Mountains National Park has a long list of overdue maintenance projects. Now it's turning to a private partner to help raise money to upgrade the park's outdated radio system. That system lets rangers communicate during routine patrols as well as emergencies, like the wildfires that killed 14 people in east Tennessee a year ago.

The Charlotte area has lost one of its leading jazz men - John Alexander. The longtime saxophonist and composer died last Sunday, Nov. 19, in Gastonia.  He was a regular at the Double Door Inn, Blue and the Ritz, as well as many other local venues where he helped keep jazz alive in the Charlotte area. 

After Democrat Roy Cooper defeated Republican Governor Pat McCrory a year ago, state environmental secretary Donald van der Vaart gave up his office. After all, he was a McCrory appointee. But he didn't leave the agency. Instead he demoted himself and the department's No. 2 official, John Evans, to staff positions. The two men have since spoken out on policy issues, sometimes at odds with state policy. Now the Department of Environmental Quality has put the van der Vaart and Evans on paid  "investigatory leave."  WFAE's David Boraks joins "All Things Considered" host Mark Rumsey to talk about the situation.

Activist Gemini Boyd speaks to Police Foundation consultants Monday night at Little Rock AME Zion Church in uptown Charlotte.
David Boraks / WFAE

Consultants reviewing CMPD's response to last year's protests in uptown Charlotte heard from speakers calling for changes in their draft report, and also how CMPD holds officers responsible. 

Duke Energy and the state's utility consumer advocates have reached a partial agreement on a rate increase for eastern North Carolina that's lower than what the company originally sought. But Duke and the advocates are still haggling over how much consumers should pay for coal ash cleanups at Duke's North Carolina power plants and hurricane recovery costs.

The Mecklenburg Board of Elections on Friday certified results of the November 7 local elections across the county. A final  check of absentee and provisional ballots didn't change the outcomes of two close town commissioner races in Cornelius and Davidson.

Robert D. Raiford
WRFX

Broadcaster Robert D. Raiford has died. He spent more than 70 years on the airwaves, starting as a teenager in Concord, then moving on to a career around the country before returning to Charlotte. Listeners nationwide got to know him as the "curmudgeon at large" on the Charlotte-based "John Boy and Billy Show." 

In February, workers used a giant crane to lower a containment vessel ring into place at the V.C. Summer nuclear plant in Fairfield County, S.C.
SCANA

Updated 1:50 p.m.
South Carolina Electric & Gas is offering to cut customer rates by 3.5 percent immediately, and more in the future, as part of a proposed settlement related to the cancellation of a failed nuclear project.

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