Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

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

Search results for "favoritism" ...

  • Behind the Badge

    Based on access to confidential Sheriff's Department documents, a Times investigation showed how political favoritism and negligence led to the hiring of scores of deputies whose records included violence, deceit and sexual misconduct.
  • Tulane Legislative Scholarships

    Under a 120-year old deal with state lawmakers, Tulane University allows each of the Louisiana's 144 legislators to award one full scholarship to Tulane every year in exchange for tax breaks. Abuses of the program were first exposed 20 years ago by WWL-TV (including that the mayor of New Orleans had given his own son a scholarship), leading to supposed reforms. But in a joint investigation with the New Orleans Advocate, our research revealed scholarships based on insider connections, favoritism and campaign contributions. We found that many scholarships don't go to the most needy or best qualified, but to the children of the powerful and the connected. In six televised reports and seven accompanying front page articles in the New Orleans Advocate, as well as on the web sites of both media outlets, we exposed the new problems which have already led to one state lawmaker calling for more major reforms to the scholarship program.
  • The Brunswick Stew

    “The Brunswick Stew” is a series of investigative reports that began with plea from a citizens group in Brunswick, Virginia. They asked for help shining some light on what was going on in their county. The effort would take several months. Filing FOI requests and pouring over a seemingly endless pile of paperwork, a number of serious issues came to light. Illegal bonuses and contracts, back room politics, political favoritism in the awarding of bids, and a blatant case of public safety being put at risk are what “The Brunswick Stew” unveils.
  • Paying out millions, and playing favorites

    The series explored favoritism and ethical lapses in the way Sarasota County government awarded lucrative contracts to private vendors. We found that the county relied too much on "piggybacking," a purchasing shortcut that allowed low and middle-level employees to essentially award contracts to whoever they wanted without bids.
  • Inside National Grid's Secretive $25 Million

    The reporters exposed a secret fund controlled by local power company National Grid. An add-on charge to each customer's monthly bill built a $25 million slush fund for two utility officials to spend on favored economic development projects.
  • Sweetheart Deals

    This investigation looked at "county-owned land deals in Prince George's County. They found that most of the deals - worth millions of dollars - went to people with close ties to County Executive Jack B. Johnson, including a business partner, golfing buddy, a former business partner and campaign contributors. Many of the deals were not put out to bid."
  • Broken Bench

    This series described the long record of injustices in New York's town and village courts that dates from the Colonial era. These courts are not financed by the state; because all their funding comes from towns and villages, they are starved for resources. The lack of state supervision paved the way for racism, favoritism and sexism to thrive in the courts.
  • CHP Contracting

    Bee reporters investigate the California Highway Patrol, reporting on topics including "favoritism in bidding practices to ongoing instances of CHP pension fraud, and efforts to crack down on it." As a result of the Bee's work, the state legislature and administration called for further investigations to discover and fix the problems.
  • Roanoke Redevelopment and Housing Authority Investigation

    "These stories detail a history of public contracting at the Roanoke Redevelopment and Housing Authority that is at best sloppy and at worst rife with favoritism and conflicts of interest. An audit of the authority by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development confirmed the problems with contracting practices at the authority and asked for $2 million to be repaid because the money wasn't spent properly."
  • Republicans snap up state jobs

    A Dispatch computer analysis shows that hiring in Franklin County has shifted toward Republicans after GOP Gov. George V. Voinovich took office. Republicans were 1.5 times more likely than Democrats to be hired, and of the new hires, Republicans on average are paid more than Democrats, among other findings.