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 "paychecks" ...

  • Only in Kentucky: Jailers Without Jails

    Reporters R.G. Dunlop and Jacob Ryan revealed that more than a third of the state's 120 counties elect jailers that have no jails to oversee. Several earn hefty paychecks for little work, putting their cash-strapped counties in a pickle, and hire their own spouses or children as deputies. Only in Kentucky does this curious practice exist. https://soundcloud.com/wfplnews/only-in-kentucky-jailers-without-jails
  • Unguarded

    More than 60,000 Ohioans with court-appointed guardians were neglected or worse during the past decade. Some saw their assets stolen. Some were physically abused. All were victims of unscrupulous guardians and a broken system that purports to protect them. Lack of urgency by the Ohio Supreme Court, Ohio Attorney General, lawmakers and probate court judges to ensure basic safeguards allowed these people – some of society’s most vulnerable – to become victims. Frustrated families were angry and ashamed as they watched their loved ones die without money or dignity. So-called guardians drained a public servant’s life savings, took family mementos from a grandmother planning to give them to her children and stole paychecks from a young man who is developmentally disabled.
  • Payday California

    After California taxpayers discovered the tiny town of Bell had been paying enormous and illegal salaries to officials there, many people asked: How did we miss this for so long? That’s when The Center for Investigative Reporting set out to create the most comprehensive database in the country of local government salaries. Although these salaries are public records, most taxpayers know little about whether the paychecks for city and county officials are fair. No statewide standards govern how local pay is set, leaving the public in the dark about whether their city managers, for example, are paid appropriately for the job and the community. With Payday California, CIR skillfully put into context the $40 billion a year that California cities and counties spend on their employees.
  • Retirees' Disability Epidemic

    One of the nation's largest commuter lines, Long Island Rail Road, has taken advantage of an obscure federal agency to reap staggering paychecks once they leave their jobs.
  • Workers: We Were Cheated Out of Pay. Restaurant Cleaning Company Says Pay Deductions Legal. Labor Experts Not So Sure.

    This investigation found that "CanAmera, a Canadian-based company that cleans restaurants in four states and Ontario, violated a host of state and federal labor laws, including laws governing minimum wage, overtime, a day of rest and federal and tax withholdings. The company also illegally withheld money from workers' paychecks. The company hired worked with limited English skills with promises of a good job. But, in fact, the mostly Spanish speaking workers found themselves fighting for money they said was owed to them."
  • Crony played a numbers game

    The Denver Post's review of Civil Services practices found that "one of a handful of people with criminal histories to administer Denver's police and firefighter exams collected his paychecks by using Social Security numbers that belonged to others."
  • Indentured in America

    A joint investigation by the Baltimore Sun and the Orlando Sentinel revealed that "a century and a half after the Emancipation Proclamation... slavery of a sort still (exists) in America. Today's victims are not bound by metal shackles, but legal contracts in which they sign away years of their lives... (The) three-part series told how thousands of Pacific Islanders were lured to America with promises of high-paying nurse's jobs, but ended up emptying bedpans in nursing homes or working at menial tasks at amusement parks, jobs American workers wouldn't take. The contracts, which few of the islanders understood, required them to stay on the job for as long as two years and made them liable for damages of up to $6,250 if they bolted... The islander's meager paychecks, barely more than minimum wage, were depleted by 'service charges.' ... The series was a novel joint venture between The Sun and another Tribune paper, The Orlando Sentinel. After (Walter F.) Roche (Jr.) discovered many of the workers and recruiters were in Florida, (Willoughby) Mariano joined him to complete the reporting on the series. Both papers published it simultaneously."
  • Howard Lutnick, CEO of Cantor Fitzgerald; Deconstructing Lutnick

    ABC reports on the grief and anguish of Howard Lutnick, the CEO of Cantor Fitzgerald, a bond trading company that lost more employees than any other firm in the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center. Lutnick's brother and best friend died in the collapse of the north tower. The interview with the CEO is "an emotional, eyewitness account ... [that] ... personalized the tragedy for millions of Americans." The first segment examines Lutnick's determination to rebuild his firm and to help the families of the 700 deceased employees. The second story takes "a critical look" at whether the CEO has been keeping his promises.
  • City Hid CAPS Funds, Workers in Private Agency

    This investigation by The Chicago Reporter found that "the Chicago Police Department diverted nearly $ 2.2 million to a private nonprofit agency, which used the money to pay up to 30 civilian workers in the department's community policing program from 1997 to 1999." The reporter revealed that "the agency...was spun off from the Chicago Department of Public Health in 1994 to promote public health..." and is "one of at least two dozen nonprofit agencies created with the help of the city since 1986." The new nonprofit center issued the paychecks of the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS) from 1997 through 1999 and was "spending hidden from public view," the investigation showed. Some of the story sources said that "CAPS workers do political work." The reporter also found that "some of the police department funds were funneled through the finance general account of the city corporate fund."
  • Nursing Home Scandal

    The Oklahoman investigated nursing homes in the area and found a scandal widely affecting the states' elderly population. "Many residents of long term care facilities were not only being neglected, but physically abused. When abuses were discovered, prosecutors usually let the abusers off with deferred or suspended sentences." Reporters also found that "The Health Department payroll included dozens of people who were relatives of state legislators and Health Department administrators." In addition, The Oklahoman found nine ghost employees who "not only collected paychecks while doing little or no work", but also received money from "submitted bogus travel and expense reports."