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Charles Fishburne

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Charles Fishburne is a correspondent for WCVE Public Radio. He brings over 40 years experience as a broadcast journalist and news executive in Richmond, Washington D.C. and New York. Charles was also a long-time television news anchor and news director in Richmond.

Articles by Charles Fishburne

Richmond Area Outpaces State and Nation in Job Growth and Low Unemployment

The Richmond area is outpacing both the state and the nation in job growth and low unemployment. The Virginia Employment Commission released February numbers yesterday (4/6).

That puts Richmond 13th, best among large metro areas in the county.

Chesterfield’s jobless rate was 3.9% down from 4.9% same time last year, Hanover 3.5%, down from 4.8% and Henrico 3.9%, down from 4.8% a year ago.

Wason Poll Shows Republican Defections if Trump is Nominee

A Wason Poll just released this morning (4/7), shows widespread Republican defections if Donald Trump is the Party nominee.

With contentious primary races testing party loyalty across the country, the Wason Center wanted to see where Virginians stood.

On the other hand, 90% of Virginia Democrats say they would vote for Hillary Clinton if she were their party’s nominee, and in a hypothetical matchup in Virginia, the polls shows Clinton over Trump 44-35%.

Historical Marker to Commemorate Loving v. Virginia Supreme Court Decision

A landmark Supreme Court decision on interracial marriage is being recognized by Virginia with a historical marker. The marker commemorates the Loving v. Virginia case, which resulted in the United States Supreme court striking down Virginia’s laws against interracial marriage, setting a precedent for the nation.

Mildred Jeter, daughter of a sharecropper, married the boy next door, Richard Loving, son of a construction worker, and had a rude awakening. It was a crime in Virginia in 1958. The Supreme Court struck it down June 12th, 1967.

Petersburg City Council to Meet on Motion To Strip Mayor of His Title

Another tumultuous Petersburg City Council met last night (4/5), and a called to remove the mayor.

The city has been facing a major financial crisis. The city manager was let go and the city attorney resigned.

Last night another large crowd attended the council meeting and several residents went after the mayor. Councilwoman Treska Wilson-Smith moved he be stripped of his title and council decided to meet again Monday to discuss the motion.

Opponents to High Speed Rail Pack Ashland Meeting

There was more opposition to High Speed Rail through Ashland at a meeting last night.

It was supposed to be just an informational meeting, but some 200 people jammed into Patrick Henry High School, with many speaking against the high-speed rail project.

The plan is still just that, with three proposals under study, but residents don’t like two of them. One would add a third rail through Ashland, another would cut a bypass through mostly rural farmland. Residents say either would run their quality of life.

The third is a no-build option.

School Officials Threaten Possible School Closures Due To Budget Cuts

Richmond Public Schools may have to close Armstrong High and four elementary schools based on a shortfall in the proposed 2017 fiscal budget.

School officials call say they will consider closing Armstrong High, Cary Elementary, Swansboro, Overby-Shepherd and Southampton if they are forced to cut 18 million from the proposed budget.

School Board Chairman Jeffrey Bourne called it “a dangerous game of chicken,” with city council, but insisted they should begin the conversation about school closings before council acts.

FEMA Refuses Federal Aid For Virginia Tornado Victims

The Federal Government has denied a state request for financial aid for Virginians who lost homes and businesses to tornadoes that swept through dozens of localities February 24th.

Eight tornadoes moved through 12 localities, killing five people and injuring 45 others and doing an estimated 35 million dollars in damage.

But yesterday state officials got a letter from FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate who said the damage was not severe enough to warrant federal money.

Freeze Watch Upgraded to Warning

The National Weather Service has upgraded its warning about freezing temperatures tonight.

Yesterday it was a Freeze Watch, now it’s a warning.

Andrew Zimmerman, National Weather Service in Wakefield says those temperatures can kill crops and other sensitive vegetation.

Some farmers in the region have already stacked piles of straw in their fields, and will burn them overnight, hoping the smoke will help keep the cold air off crops, some of which have begun to bloom because of a warm spell in March.

The Warning is out from midnight to nine am.

VMI Environmental Symposium Set This Week In Lexington

The Virginia Tech professor who led a team of researchers that exposed the Flint, Michigan water crisis is among the featured speakers at VMI’s annual environmental symposium this week.

Marc Edwards is a MacArthur “genius” grant recipient and one of the nation’s top experts on water contamination. He will join Governor McAuliffe and others at the 27th annual Environmental Virginia Symposium which begins tomorrow (4/5) in Lexington.

Freeze Watch Issued for Late Tomorrow Night

The National Weather Service has issued a freeze watch much of Central Virginia from late tomorrow night (4/5) into Wednesday morning.

The National Weather service says a Canadian cold front will be moving in late Tuesday night. Andrew Zimmerman at the National Weather Service in Wakefield says timing is dangerous for crops.

The record low for Richmond for the date is 27. He says we’ll be close to that.