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The large autopsy suite at the new State Medical Examiner's Office in Raleigh. The pathologists in this office are doing fewer autopsies than in previous years because of workload and budget issues. Chris Seward/courtesy of The Charlotte Observer
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December 1, 2014, Comments Off

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner asked staff last year not to autopsy the bodies of hundreds of people who died in suspicious or unexpected circumstances, lowering the use of the state’s best tool for determining an exact cause of death.

Five couples, some plaintiffs in the initial litigation that led to the ruling overturning the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, kiss after they were declared married on the steps outside the county Register of Deeds office Monday in Charlotte. From left, Amber and Jess (holding son Beckhem) Zinobile, Margaret Bevington and Bettie Ingram, Jeanne Scott and Judy Quilliams, Cathy Fry and Joanne Marinaro, and Aaron Luckey and Kevin Hindsman were wed by the Rev. Nancy Kraft, pastor of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Jeff Willhelm/Charlotte Observer

Second NC judge allows same-sex marriage plus Republicans a chance to appeal

October 15, 2014, Comments Off

A federal judge Tuesday became the second in five days to declare North Carolina’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional, but he allowed Republican ...

Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and Republican challenger Thom Tillis are in a race for one of two US Senate seats representing North Carolina.

Tillis, Hagan trade shots over NC’s environment

October 14, 2014, Comments Off

From climate change to fracking chemicals, Hagan and Tillis recently challenged one another on their actions and opinions related to the state's envir ...

The French Broad River. Archive photo by Katie Bailey/Carolina Public Press

Duke Energy creates $10M fund for Carolinas waterways

September 25, 2014, Comments Off

The money will be used to improve water quality, enhance fish and wildlife habitat, and expand public access. It may also buff a corporate image batte ...

  • Gov. Pat McCrory speaks at the press conference Wednesday, held at the Asheville Regional Airport, about his 25-year transportation plan. Alicia Funderburk/Carolina Public Press
    Low-ranking roads may see rise in McCrory’s transportation plan
    September 23, 2014, Comments Off

    A year after Gov. Pat McCrory created data-driven rankings to “take politics out of road building,” the governor has proposed borrowing $1 billion for new highway construction, possibly for road projects that scored near the bottom of h ...

  • Carbon monoxide found at the Best Western Hotel in Boone where a York County boy and a Washington couple died. File photo courtesy of Elisabeth Arriero/The Charlotte Observer
    Dangers hidden for years at Boone’s Best Western
    August 25, 2014, Comments Off

    When the Best Western Blue Ridge Plaza was built 14 years ago in Boone, billed as an eco-friendly hotel with breathtaking views, construction workers likely skipped some safety requirements. The hotel was the site of three deaths related to ...

  • Duke Energy's Asheville plant. Micah Wilkins/Carolina Public Press
    NC legislators reach compromise on coal ash bill
    August 20, 2014, Comments Off

    Both chambers put Charlotte-based Duke Energy on track to drain its 33 North Carolina ash ponds within 15 years. But last-minute changes between them derailed the bill on Aug. 1 and appeared unlikely to be resolved until at least November, ...

  • Davidson River in the Pisgah National Forest in Transylvania County. File photo/Carolina Public Press
    NC plays catch-up on water standards
    July 14, 2014, Comments Off

    A years-overdue rewrite of NC water quality standards stiffens limits on metals, the toxic elements that have been in the public eye since the Dan River coal ash spill in February. Environmentalists and the Environmental Protection Agency, ...