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.

The Carolina Panthers are headed to the NFC Divisional playoff next weekend thanks to a record-setting defensive performance Saturday at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.  The Panthers held Arizona to just 78 yards of offense – an NFL playoff record – in the 27 to 16 victory in the NFC Wild Card playoff game.

More charter schools are in the planning stages in North Carolina. The Charlotte Observer reports the state received 11 more applications for charters next year, including three in the Charlotte area.   The expected growth comes as the latest crop of new schools falls short of enrollment projections. The newspaper reports that two Charlotte area charters have closed over the past two years in their first years,  because of low enrollment and other troubles.

New federal rules are out governing disposal of coal ash, but environmentalists aren’t too happy.  They’ve been calling for stricter controls for years on the ash, which is the byproduct of burning coal for electricity. The government acted after a series of spills: Six years ago, there was a massive spill of coal ash sludge in Tennessee. Three years later, tons of coal ash swept into Lake Michigan. Last February, another spill and gray sludge spewed into North Carolina’s Dan River. Environmentalists wanted coal ash to be treated as hazardous waste.

Protests have continued around the nation and in North Carolina this weekend, aimed at calling attention to police killings of unarmed black men.  In Fayetteville Saturday, marchers waved signs along the curb of Ski-bo Road, chanting "Hands Up, Don't Shoot." Passing motorists honked their horns in support.  Police didn't have an estimate of the number of marchers.  And in downtown Charlotte yesterday afternoon, about 60 people protested at Trade and Tryon streets.

Black Lives Matter die-in protest in Davidson
Jonathan Cox/DavidsonNews.net

More than 125 Davidson College students and some faculty members staged a ‘die-in’ protest Saturday night, lying down in the middle of Main Street during the Christmas in Davidson festival. Our news partner DavidsonNews.net reports the students were calling for justice in recent incidents of violence and alleged police brutality against black people.

The Thanksgiving holiday week is coming to a close, with North Carolinians on  the roads and in the air returning home Sunday and Monday. Officials at Charlotte Douglas Airport say they expect peak crowds the next two days, with more than 26,000 travelers departing daily for return trips home, as well as many arrivals.  That’s approaching the airport's daily traffic record, on the day after the Democratic National Convention in September 2012, when 29,000 people departed from Charlotte.  

North Carolina Republican legislators have nominated a new House Speaker. State Representative Tim Moore of Kings Mountain, in Cleveland County, is in line to take over as the House leader after US Senator-elect Thom Tills steps down.   Republicans picked Moore from among six candidates during a meeting Saturday in Asheboro. 

North Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Randy Voller isn’t seeking re-election.  The former Pittsboro mayor made the announcement Saturday at the party executive committee meeting in Chatham County. The committee narrowly elected Voller in 2013 and he has focused on building local party organizations with Democrats in the minority in state government.

A children's rights group says South Carolina's same-sex marriage ban harms children with gay parents.  The Lawyers' Committee for Children's Rights says in court papers filed last week that children of gay couples thrive like any kids in two-parent homes but are discriminated against by South Carolina's law.    The nonprofit advocacy group filed its papers Wednesday in one of the lawsuits challenging South Carolina's ban on gay marriage.

GOP LEADERS SEEK TO RESTORE GAY MARRIAGE BAN

North Carolina’s US Senate candidates are counting down the hours to Election day Tuesday. Incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan and Republican challenger Thom Tillis both brought their campaigns to Cornelius Saturday in hopes of getting out the vote.

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