Political news

August 6th, 1945 the United States exploded an atomic bomb over Hiroshima, Japan.  Three days later a second bomb exploded over Nagasaki.  Much of the work that led to the building of the bomb was done at Oak Ridge, Tennessee.  Oak Ridge is 18 miles west of Knoxville and less than a two and half hour drive from Asheville.  To mark the dawning of the threat of nuclear weapons, the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance will lead a name and remembrance ceremony at the gates of the weapons plant. 


North Carolina Transportation Secretary Tony Tata has resigned.

Gov. Pat McCrory issued a news release Tuesday announcing the resignation, saying the departure was prompted so Tata could "focus on personal and family matters in addition to pursuing his passion as an author."

Mountain XPress

After serving on the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners for twenty years,  David Gantt recently announced he won’t seek re-election in 2016. Gantt says he made his intentions known early to give other potential candidates time to consider a run for  political office.  Gantt, who is serving his second term as Chairman, says he will spend more time with his family, practicing law, and make time for travel.  He spoke with David Hurand.


The chairman of the North Carolina Republican party has posted Twitter photos juxtaposing images of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the Ku Klux Klan.

Hasan Harnett posted the images on the social media site Thursday. One shows Klansmen surrounding a burning cross; the caption says the KKK was created as the militant wing of the Democratic Party. The second photo shows Clinton winking.


 A divided state Supreme Court has ruled in favor of a Republican-backed program that spends taxpayer money on tuition for students at private and religious schools.

The 4-3 decision issued Thursday split North Carolina's highest court along party lines, reversing a lower court ruling declaring the state's Opportunity Scholarships unconstitutional.

As the federal trial over North Carolina's election overhaul continues in Winston-Salem this week, one word has come up over and over again: disenfranchised. The U.S. Justice Department, the state NAACP and others contend the changes disenfranchised some African-Americans in 2014.

 North Carolina's jobless rate has inched up for the fourth month as it diverges from the declining national rate.

The North Carolina Department of Commerce said Tuesday that the unemployment rate for June was 5.8 percent, a slight increase from the previous month. The May rate was 5.7 percent.

Nationally, unemployment fell to 5.3 percent representing the third month it was lower that North Carolina's.

Seasonally adjusted figures show the state's labor force grew slightly since May. The growing workforce has been a positive sign for the state's economy.


Governor Pat McCrory says he will veto a Senate bill to redistribute more sales dollars to rural North Carolina counties, a promise which prompted a bitter response from the bill's Republican sponsor.

McCrory released a statement Tuesday saying he would veto the bill, which has not yet passed a committee vote. The statement says that instead of sales taxes, the Senate should be focused on the governor's plan to borrow money to fund infrastructure and road development across the state.

A court decision on the future of the Asheville Water System is expected soon.  The city is challenging a state imposed plan to transfer control of its water system to a regional authority.  In the meantime, a Western North Carolina county is considering a voluntary transfer of control of its water system to a South Carolina Water District.  David Hurand spoke with reporter Jon Elliston with the on-line investigative news service Carolina Public Press about the future of the Polk County Water System.


The North Carolina legislature will have the ultimate say over public "objects of remembrance," including Confederate memorials, under a new law signed by the governor.

Gov. Pat McCrory announced Thursday evening that he signed a controversial historical monuments bill that had passed the House earlier in the week. The bill's opponents, mainly Democrats, argued it would protect an unknown number of Confederate memorials in the state.