Articles by Colin Campbell


Colin Campbell: Flood Insurance Rules Failed Florence Victims

TRENTON — A few days after Hurricane Florence, home and business owners in Jones County began an unpleasant task: Cleaning out soggy, smelly flooded buildings and piling their merchandise, furniture and personal belongings outside on the curb. In an ideal world, filing an insurance claim would replace what’s lost and get life back to normal in Trenton and Pollocksville, two…


Colin Campbell: Utility Woes Endanger NC’s Small Towns

RALEIGH — What would you do if your utility bill for water and sewer increased to $500 per month? You’d probably end up selling your house at a loss and moving out of town. And while it might seem like a wild hypothetical, it’s a possibility in the tiny Columbus County town of Cerro Gordo, according to a study presented…


Colin Campbell: Hurricane Could Hurt Turnout, Shift Election Dynamics

RALEIGH – With so much attention rightfully focused on Hurricane Florence and its terrible aftermath in North Carolina, it’s easy to forget that there’s an election just over a month away. For a few days at least, politics took a time out. Both political parties used their platforms to post storm safety information. A few candidates announced they’d suspend their…


Tiny towns hoped river would bring tourists. It brought a flood instead

By Colin Campbell, NCInsider.com TRENTON — The Trent River is supposed to be an asset for the tiny Jones County towns of Trenton and Pollocksville. Seeking a share of the tourism that boosts nearby New Bern and beach communities, town leaders have promoted outdoor recreation along the picturesque river that winds slowly through the rural county. Trenton’s website features photos of…


Colin Campbell: To Recover From Florence, NC Must Learn From Hurricane Matthew Mistakes

RALEIGH — If recent history is any guide, we’ll still be hearing about the Hurricane Florence recovery effort well into 2020. The recovery from Hurricane Matthew — which flooded large parts of Eastern North Carolina in October 2016 — was still creeping along as Florence hit the state. Just a week before Florence, Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration announced the hiring…


Colin Campbell: Incompetent Federal Investigators Want to See Your Ballots

RALEIGH — It’s amateur hour at the federal Department of Justice and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement. The agencies won’t say what exactly they’re investigating, but they recently submitted subpoenas for a massive amount of voting records — including completed ballots — from North Carolina elections agencies. They want millions of documents spanning an eight-year period, and initially they wanted them…



Colin Campbell: Four Things We’ll Learn From NC’s Sleepy Primary

RALEIGH — A lot of North Carolina voters might have forgotten there’s an election primary coming up on May 8. TV viewers have seen few, if any, campaign ads. Only a few races have drawn news coverage, and none are statewide contests. Early voting turnout has been anemic so far. Sure, there’s a heightened interest in politics these days —…


Broadband Availability a Challenge in Rural Areas

By Colin Campbell, NCInsider.com When Donnie Shumate moved to Hyde County several years ago, his wife had to quit her work-from-home job with Amazon because the internet speed was too slow for telecommuting. Shumate is the county’s information technology manager, and he hasn’t been able to persuade internet providers to serve Hyde, which is one of the state’s most rural…