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    Duke Energy says it has completed repairs on substation equipment damaged in shootings over the weekend and restored power thousands of customers who lost electricity in a central North Carolina county.  All but a handful of households in Moore County had regained power as of 5 p.m. Wednesday, according to Duke Energy’s outage map. A peak of more than 45,000 customers lost power over the weekend. Authorities have said the outages began shortly after 7 p.m. Saturday night after one or more people drove up to two substations, breached the gates and opened fire on them. Police have not released a motive.

      The utility company in Memphis, Tennessee, has rejected a 20-year contract with Tennessee Valley Authority but will remain the power provider’s largest customer for the foreseeable future. Memphis Light, Gas and Water’s Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to turn down the contract offer by TVA, which provides power to the utility and to others in TVA’s seven-state region. Board Chairman Mitch Graves stated the contract was too long of an agreement. MLGW will remain in its current five-year rolling contract with TVA. MLGW has undergone a yearslong review process as it considers its long-term power options.

        The House Ethics Committee has told departing U.S. Rep. Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina to pay over $14,000 to charity. The committee determined Cawthorn financially benefited while purchasing a cryptocurrency that he was promoting and violated conflict of interest rules. The Republican lost his reelection bid in May’s primary. The committee released its report Tuesday about Cawthorn's activities related to a “meme” coin he purchased in late 2021. An investigative subcommittee didn't reach consensus on whether Cawthorn intended to profit personally from those promotions. The committee also agreed there was no evidence that the Republican had an improper relationship with a staff member.

          North Carolina Labor Commissioner Josh Dobson says he won’t seek reelection or run for any other office in 2024. He made the announcement Tuesday at the Council of State meeting. Dobson says he’ll have served 14 consecutive years in office with previous gigs as a state legislator and county commissioner. He said he felt the time was right to step out of elected office. The 41-year-old McDowell County Republican succeeded retiring Commissioner Cherie Berry by winning the 2020 election over Democrat Jessica Holmes. The Department of Labor is in charge of administering state labor and workplace training laws and regulations.

            Two North Carolina Democratic government lawyers have argued on competing sides at an appeals court in a case over whether the Wake County district attorney can prosecute Attorney General Josh Stein or others for a 2020 campaign commercial. Private attorneys for Stein and Wake District Attorney Lorrin Freeman met Tuesday before a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. At issue is a state law that makes certain political speech a crime. Stein's campaign ad criticized his then-Republican challenger for AG over untested rape kits. Stein and his allies say the 1931 law is unconstitutional and want the judges to block its enforcement.

            A mystery has resurfaced on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, as waves continue to expose more of a shipwreck that defies easy identification. The hull — held together by nails and rusty strips of iron — appeared over the summer on Cape Lookout National Seashore, according to the National Park Service. “It shows up every so often on South Core Banks about 6 miles up beach from the lighthouse,” ...

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            Republicans from North Carolina who are bringing the case to the high court argue that a provision of the U.S. Constitution known as the elections clause gives state lawmakers virtually total control over the “times, places and manner” of congressional elections, including redistricting, and cuts state courts out of the process.

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