ELECTION 2020-LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
Divisive, but direct: Mark Robinson aims to work with Cooper
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Republican Mark Robinson will serve as North Carolina’s first Black lieutenant governor. He hopes he can work with Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and state lawmakers on veterans-related issues. Robinson is a political newcomer who rose to prominence for a gun rights speech he made in front of Greensboro’s City Council. He wants the state to create the constitutional right to carry a firearm without a license or permit. He is also pushing for a tax exemption on the pensions of all military veterans. Robinson is a divisive figure who ran against Democrat Yvonne Holley and has written several controversial posts on Facebook.
Overturned boat prompted massive search off Outer Banks
BEAUFORT, N.C. (AP) — An overturned boat on the coast of North Carolina prompted a massive search for two people who were reportedly on board. The Raleigh News & Observer reports that a fishing boat was discovered on its side Tuesday morning more than three miles from Beaufort Inlet. The Coast Guard said in a statement that a family member of one of the passengers said the vessel left Atlantic Beach Sunday with two people on board to fish near shore. Beaufort Inlet is just west of Cape Lookout near the southern tip of the Outer Banks. The search had spanned about 200 square nautical miles as of Tuesday afternoon.
Search for suspects continues after shooting outside church
HIGH POINT, N.C. (AP) — Police in North Carolina are still looking for suspects after a man was killed outside a church during what authorities said was a “violent and brazen” drive-by shooting. The Charlotte Observer reported Wednesday that High Point police are looking for at least two different vehicles. One is a “newer model” four-door Dodge Charger. The other is a white, four-door car. Investigators said that 60 to 70 spent shells from multiple weapons were found outside the church. It had been hosting a funeral service on Sunday for “a young man who had died in October.” Fredrick Cox Jr. died at the scene outside Living Water Baptist Church. Police said that several others suffered minor injuries.
BC-US-SCI-HURRICANE STAYING POWER
Hurricanes stay stronger longer after landfall than in past
A new study finds that hurricanes are staying stronger longer after striking land than they did decades ago, and that means more destruction inland. Wednesday’s study blames man-made climate change for making ocean water warmer and increasing the staying power of storms. In the 1960s, a typical hurricane lost two-thirds of its power within 17 hours. Now it typically takes almost 33 hours for the storm to decay that much. It took nearly 50 hours for 2018’s Florence to lose two-thirds of its power after landfall. Scientists say a warming world means inland areas become more vulnerable to storms that just won’t quit.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-VACCINE DISTRIBUTION
N.C. health system aims to be early vaccine distributor
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The CEO of Atrium Health in North Carolina says he anticipates the hospital network will be chosen as an “early site” to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine being developed by Pfizer Inc. Atrium Health CEO Gene Woods said Tuesday that the Charlotte-based health system has purchased refrigeration units that could store 300,000 does of the vaccine. Those units are necessary since the vaccine needs to be kept at low temperatures. Pfizer says the vaccine has 90% effectiveness based on early and incomplete test results. The Charlotte Observer reports Atrium Health has taken a financial hit this year responding to the virus outbreak, and initially postponing many non-essential surgeries.
ELECTION 2020-SENATE-NORTH CAROLINA
Cunningham concedes to US Sen. Tillis in North Carolina
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Democrat Cal Cunningham has conceded to incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Thom Tillis in North Carolina. Cunningham said in a statement Tuesday that “the voters have spoken” and it was clear Tillis had won. Tillis leads Cunningham by 94,500 votes. The race is still too early to call, with votes still uncounted. With Cunningham’s concession, all eyes now turn to Georgia, where two U.S. Senate runoff races in January are likely to determine the balance of the upper chamber. Cunningham accepted defeat even after outraising Tillis during what became the most expensive U.S. Senate race in history.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-NORTH CAROLINA
N. Carolina tightens gathering limits ahead of Thanksgiving
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina will not reopen the economy further as coronavirus cases rise and a higher percentage of COVID tests are coming back positive. In anticipation of the Thanksgiving holiday, Gov. Roy Cooper announced that indoor gathering limits will be tightened from 25 people to 10 people. Cooper also ruled out any consideration for a position in Democratic President-elect Joe Biden’s administration. He praised state Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen amid speculation she could be a top contender for a cabinet-level position. Cohen did not say whether that is something she would be interested in pursuing.
North Carolina college announces cuts to majors, faculty
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina college says it will discontinue nearly half of its academic majors and cut another 36 positions in hopes of securing its long-term future. The News & Record of Greensboro reports that after a review that began in September, Guilford College interim president Carol Moore said she is recommending to trustees that the private Quaker college phase out 19 of its 42 academic majors. The changes won’t become official until after a trustees’ vote in early 2021 that will give time for the 16 tenured professors slated to be laid off to appeal their dismissals.
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