Resource Center

Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 26,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364573-882-3364  or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.



Search results for "Federal Government" ...

  • Diplomatic Drivers

    Driving more than 100 mph. Hit and runs. Multiple DUIs. They were all considered classified state secrets until Tisha Thompson spent six years successfully fighting for diplomatic driving records never before released to the public. You can’t drive anywhere in Washington, DC without spotting the distinctive red and blue tags of foreign diplomats. In 2008, Thompson filed a FOIA with the US Department of State requesting driving records of any diplomat pulled over for violating our local traffic laws. Several years later, she was told her FOIA had become “one of the oldest, if not the oldest” in the agency’s system because it could be a potential diplomatic relations problem. Thompson used a combination of traditional and creative ways to get FOIA information not just from the federal government but also from a long list of local and state jurisdictions. And the results were stunning.

    Tags: diplomats; traffic; violations; us department of state

    By Tisha Thompson; Steve Jones; Rick Yarborough; Mike Goldrick

    WRC-TV NBC4 Washington

    2014

  • The Informant

    A former FBI informant goes public and takes KMOV deep inside a federal corruption investigation. the documentary uses previously unreleased wiretaps and undercover FBI video to show how the informant collected the evidence required to send a local mayor, police chief and streets superintendent to prison. The KMOV investigation digs deeper. It delves into the personal story of the informant and show how he used his personal relationship with the mayor to gain his confidence. In addition, KMOV obtained copies of FBI field reports that were not public documents and not presented in court. These reports showed that information provided by the informant was often wrong, though the informant insisted he provided the information required to obtain convictions. The KMOV investigation also discovered that the informant was hired as an auxillary officer and never obtained the certification required to become an officer.

    Tags: FBI; informant; local government; unqualified

    By Craig Cheatham

    KMOV (St. Louis, MO)

    2014

  • Below The Radar

    Mario Diaz exposed several of air traffic controllers returning to FAA towers or control centers with little or no accountability shortly after being a contributing factor to a deadly crash. As detailed in the series of “Below The Radar” reports, these crashes resulted in 104 deaths. The litigation produced from several of these crashes came at a steep price to American taxpayers. Diaz uncovered public records (Department of Treasury and Federal judgements) indicating that the Federal Government made either verdict or settlement payments in excess of $100-million dollars to the estate of the victims --- including the estate of the pilots involved in these crashes.

    Tags: air traffic controllers; FAA; accountability; taxpayers; deaths

    By Mario Diaz; Tom Miuccio; Amy Waldman; Dave Scanlon; Zack Smith; Ken Evsaroff; Eddie Lebron; Kenton Young; Noreen Lark; Macario Hernandez; Dan Mannerino; Jared Barnett

    WPIX-TV (New York)

    2014

  • Holding Officials Accountable

    “Holding Officials Accountable” focuses on four separate WVUE investigations. Our investigative team’s extensive research drove each of these series and uncovered questionable - and in two instances illegal - spending of hundreds of thousands in taxpayer dollars. The investigations held officials accountable by asking tough questions and pushing for answers that launched federal and state investigations and led to two separate corruption charges.

    Tags: Louisiana; accountability; state government; documentary

    By Lee Zurik; Tom Wright; Jon Turnipseed; Mikel Schaefer; Greg Phillips

    WVUE-TV (New Orleans)

    2014

  • Contamination Nation

    The lure of gold helped build the fledgling northern community of Yellowknife, NWT when the Giant Mine site opened in 1948, but that development came at a heavy cost. For more than 50 years, the mine pumped arsenic into the air, contaminating people, water and land. What didn’t go up the stacks was squirreled away in the deep, dark mine shafts below the ground and forgotten, until recently. Today, there’s enough arsenic buried there to kill everyone on the planet, and the federal government is racing to contain the poison before it leeches into life-sustaining land and waterways. It will cost a billion dollars to stabilize the site, and that’s only a small part of the toxic legacy of development.

    Tags: environmental pollution; mining; Yellowknife; Giant Mine; arsenic; federal government; poison; toxic; broadcast

    By Carolyn Jarvis; Kathryn Dickson; Kirk Neff; Brennan Leffler; Laurie Few; Francesca Fionda

    Global News (Vancouver, BC)

    2014

  • Adoption Subsidy

    Because of a confusing tangle of bureaucratic rules, adoptive parents in New York City continue to receive monthly government subsidies even after sending their adopted children back to foster care or kicking them out onto the street. The subsidy is meant to encourage parents to adopt "hard-to-place" children out of foster care and to provide for the children’s care. But in the event that an adoption does not work out, the city’s children services agency will not cut off the subsidy even when it learns that the parents are no longer caring for their kids, blaming restrictive state and federal rules for its inability to act. This means, as one NYC Family Court judge said, that a child in foster care “would not have enough money for a winter coat while their parents were getting a thousand dollars a month from the city.” The city’s refusal to act also means the government is in many cases double-paying for the children’s care: one set of payments going to the children’s new foster homes and another set going to the parents who have turned their backs on them.

    Tags: adoption; government subsidies; children; foster care

    By Nick Nehamas; Glenn Bain; Baddy Paddock

    New York Daily News

    2014

  • State Restrains Psychiatric Patients At High Rate

    Between 2001 and 2007, Connecticut hospitals have been cited by the federal government for overuse of restraints and seclusions involving psychiatric patients. When the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released for the first time data on hospital restraints it was an opportunity to report on the restraint practices at Connecticut's hospitals.

    Tags: hospitals; restraint; medical care; seclusion

    By Lisa Chedekel

    Connecticut Health Investigative Team

    2014

  • Just sign here: Federal workers max out at taxpayers' expense

    FMCS is a tiny independent federal agency whose director's first order of business was to use federal funds to buy artwork from his own wife, $200 coasters and champagne. The agency paid $85,000 to the phantom company of a just-retired official for no services; spent $50,000 at a jewelry store, supposedly on picture frames to give its 200 employees "tenure awards;" and leased its people $53,000 cars. Large portions of its employees routinely used government credit cards for clearly personal items after merely requesting to have them “unblocked” from restricted items, according to 50,000 pages of internal documents obtained by the Washington Examiner--raising questions about purchase card use in other agencies. Federal employees were charging cell phones for their whole families and cable TV at not just their homes, but their vacation homes too, to the government. Its IT director has had hundreds of thousands of dollars of high-end electronics delivered to his home in West Virginia, and there is no record of many of those items being tracked to federal offices. Many other items billed are highly suspect, such as $500 for single USB thumb drives that retail for $20. Virtually all of its spending circumvented federal procurement laws. When employees pointed out rulebreaking, Director George Cohen forced one accountant to write a letter to the GSA retracting her complaint, had another top employee walked out by armed guards, and fired another whistleblower, a disabled veteran, for missing a day of work while she laid in the ICU. At an agency the size of FMCS, where corruption went to the top, there were no higher levels to appeal to, no Inspector General, and--previously--no press attention.

    Tags: Fraud; spending

    By Luke Rosiak

    Washington Examiner

    2013

  • Washington’s Open Secret

    The Government shut-down lasted 16 days, took $24 billion dollars out of the U.S. economy and furloughed 800,000 federal employees. But there was one group in Washington that was able to maintain the lavish lifestyle that many of them have grown accustomed to- Members of Congress.

    Tags: Government shut-down

    By Jeff Fager

    60 Minutes

    2013

  • Death and Dysfunction at VA

    In four original investigative reports (plus follow-ups) examining the Veterans Health Administration, CBS News uncovered serious problems surrounding patient care at VA facilities across the country. We uncovered patient deaths due to the mismanagement of an infectious disease outbreak at the Pittsburgh VA. We discovered VA doctors across the country felt pressured to prescribe strong narcotic painkillers to veterans instead of treating the underlying cause of their pain (narcotic prescriptions at VA are up 259% since 2002). We found veterans are dying at a 33% higher rate than the general population of accidental prescription narcotic overdose. We interviewed a VA doctor who was retaliated against for blowing the whistle on a dangerous shortage of mental healthcare providers at the Wilmington VA. We also found VA administrators are receiving large bonuses from the federal government despite serious allegations of poor patient care at the hospitals they oversee.

    Tags: None

    By Scott Pelley

    CBS News

    2013