North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory denied Friday he had any talks with Duke Energy executives or lobbyists about his administration's scuttled deal to settle environmental violations at two of the company's coal ash dumps for $99,000. Federal prosecutors who have served the North Carolina department have asked for records as part of a federal investigation into the spill, which contaminated the river so badly the state has advised against prolonged contact with the water or eating fish.
"I have had no conversations with Duke Energy about the lawsuits or about the federal action," McCrory said.
Lawyers for the state environmental agency pulled the deal from consideration after last week's massive coal ash spill into the Dan River. Environmentalists opposed the proposed agreement, which they described as a sweetheart deal.
Participants in a bankruptcy auction for failed electric-vehicle maker Fisker Automotive say Chinese auto-parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group has won with a bid of more than $149 million.
Two people who participated in the auction said Friday that Wanxiang's bid, which includes more than $100 million in cash, beat out Hybrid Technology, led by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li.