Archives by: Joe Killian

Joe Killian

About the author

Joe Killian, Investigative Reporter, joined N.C. Policy Watch in August of 2016. His work takes a closer look at government, politics and policy in North Carolina and their impact on the lives of everyday people. Before joining Policy Watch, Joe spent a decade at the News & Record in Greensboro, reporting on everything from cops and courts to higher education. He covered the city councils of High Point and Greensboro and the Guilford County Board of Commissioners before becoming the paper’s full-time government and politics reporter. His work has also appeared in the Winston-Salem Journal, Go Triad, the Bristol Press in Bristol, Conn., and the Cape Cod Times in Hyannis, Mass.
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Joe Killian's articles and posts

News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

PW special report – The battle for Alamance: A look at the past and present of one of North Carolina’s most divided counties

Part one: A troubled history of racism, violence and repression On a cold and drizzly February night in 1870 a mob of Klansmen came for Wyatt Outlaw, the first Black town commissioner of Graham. Wearing robes and hoods, and armed with torches, swords and pistols, some 20 men broke down the door of his home on Main Street.

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Higher Ed Top Story

Democrat Joel Ford, straddling the political fence between right and left, elected to conservative UNC Board of Governors

Former State Sen. Joel Ford was elected to the UNC Board of Governors Wednesday, becoming the conservative-dominated board’s only Democrat. The N.C. Senate chose Ford to replace Darrell Allison, who stepped down from the board to become the new chancellor of Fayetteville State University.

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News Top Story

Monday numbers: A closer look at the case for reparations for Black Americans

Last week Policy Watch spoke with Dr. William Darity, professor of Public Policy at Duke University, about his book, From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century. Co-authored with A. Kirsten Mullen, the book examines the issues and makes the case for financial reparations to Black Americans, who have been historically been systematically denied financial, social and political equality in America.

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COVID-19 News Top Story

Asian-American communities are experiencing unique challenges in pandemic vaccination

The pace of COVID-19 vaccinations has increased rapidly in North Carolina this month with the growth in vaccine supplies, the addition of new vaccination sites, and expanded eligibility. But the push to vaccinate millions of people continues to face challenges -- especially in historically underserved communities where strained relationships with the government and health care providers make some people resistant to accepting the shot.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

UNC proposal would add funds for campus police, cut budgets for student groups

Student leaders at UNC System schools are opposing potential fee changes they say could cut funds for student groups and student government while expanding budgets for campus police. At the end of January, student leaders at UNC-Chapel Hill sent a letter to the Board of Governors and UNC System President Peter Hans to express concern over ongoing discussions of the Student Activity Fee.

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Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

PW special report: How did Darrell Allison cut in line to become the new chancellor at Fayetteville State? It’s a secret.

Allison's political connections and loyalty might have helped him get the job. Darrell Allison did not make the final cut in the search process for Fayetteville State University’s next chancellor, according to sources directly involved in the process. Instead, the former UNC Board of Governors member was added at the last-minute to the list of finalists submitted to the UNC System.

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Higher Ed News Top Story

Student leaders: Systemic racism remains a pervasive problem across the UNC system

Report, statistics document a significant diversity problem, but questions persist as to whether there is a genuine commitment to address it A report on racial equity in the UNC System exposes the depth of the diversity problem in leadership at most of the state’s universities. For many Black students, faculty and staff the problem is not news. But it is, they say, at the heart of many of the system’s problems.

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Higher Ed News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

New ‘Silent Sam’ revelations contradict past public assurances offered by UNC Chancellor Guskiewicz

In December 2019, Kevin Guskiewicz, then the new UNC-Chapel Hill chancellor, appeared before a concerned and angry Faculty Council. The UNC System had just announced its Board of Governors had settled a lawsuit with the NC Sons of Confederate Veterans. The settlement would not only give the group the controversial Silent Sam Confederate monument but also $2.5 million in trust to care for it. 

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News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Applicant errors, not fraud, main source of $70 million in unemployment benefit overpayments

Lawmakers indicated they would support waiving repayments for non-fraud overages

An unprecedented surge in applications for unemployment benefits overwhelmed the state Division of Employment Security, Assistant Secretary Pryor Gibson told state lawmakers this week. And nearly a year into the pandemic, it is still struggling. 

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Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Protesters say university is exercising a double standard on free speech by absolving employee with alleged white supremacy links

Melanie Flowers had a lot to do this week, and a protest was yet another item on her list. The student body president at N.C. State University was beginning classes, juggling her studies and student government commitments in an ongoing pandemic that makes everything harder. “There’s ... a lot going on...”

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