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 "properties" ...

  • STLPR: McKee's broken promises

    Nearly a decade after Paul McKee sold St. Louis on a vision worth billions to rehab more than 150 properties on the city’s north side, roofs have caved, walls have crumbled and residents have lost patience — and hope. This story looks at how this happened, what the implications are and who is impacted.
  • SeaTimes: Out of homelessness

    Project Homeless wasn’t conceived as an investigative unit. Reporting on potential solutions to the region’s worsening homelessness was, at least initially, our stated mission. But it became clear soon after I joined the team last year that the agencies and systems that play a role in the region’s response to homelessness have received little scrutiny from the press. So, I started taking a hard look at how they work and how the public money that keeps them running is spent. That's how I found the woman at the center of this story, Carolyn Malone. She was just one of several people I found who used publicly-funded rental housing vouchers, only to end up in a squalid and potentially unsafe rental home. Two of those homes were at one time owned by one of Seattle's worst slumlords.
  • NBC News: Taxpayers Financing Slumlords: Under Ben Carson, more families live in HUD housing that fails health and safety inspections

    In a three-month investigation, NBC News found that a growing number of families – more than 47,000 - were living in horrid conditions subsidized by taxpayers in properties regularly inspected by HUD; after we started asking questions, HUD announced an overhaul of its inspection system and said it is now planning to toughen inspections, which will impact millions of low-income American families.
  • 'Not Wanted': Racial Bias at Trump Properties

    In the weeks leading up to the presidential election, the NBC News Investigative Unit and MSNBC broadcast an in-depth report on the Trump family business’s racist practices in the 1960's through the early 1980's, when African-Americans seeking to rent apartments in New York City were turned away because of the color of their skin.
  • Free Water

    It seems like a simple process: you use a service, you pay for the service. But not when you are dealing with the city of Atlanta Department of Watershed Management. Most of this entry focuses on a single fancy condominium's startling water and sewer non-payment history and Atlanta's reaction. But the floodgates opened as the reporters continued digging. After finally receiving records the city didn't want them to see, the reporters found even more shocking multi-million dollar billing mistakes on thousands of other properties.
  • Black Arts

    This is an investigation of San Francisco's for-profit Academy of Art University, the country's largest private art school. I examine the questionable business model that produced a nearly billion-dollar fortune for its owners, the Stephens family. Meanwhile, the university produced abysmal graduation rates, high levels of student debt and poor job placement. Former employees alleged illegal compensation for high-pressure recruiting tactics. And the university had serious land-use violations on most of its 40-some prime properties, benefiting, critics say, from close ties to leading San Francisco politicians.
  • FEMA's Fickle Flood Maps

    We've read for years now about anger at the high costs to property owners of changes to FEMA's flood maps, but we hadn't read this before: As homeowners around the nation protest skyrocketing premiums for federal flood insurance, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has quietly moved the lines on its flood maps to benefit hundreds of oceanfront condo buildings and million-dollar homes, according to an analysis of federal records by NBC News. Reporters Bill Dedman and Miranda Leitsinger produced a three-part series showing that FEMA had approved those revisions -- removing more than 500 waterfront properties from the highest-risk flood zone and saving the owners as much as 97 percent on the premiums they pay into the financially strained National Flood Insurance Program – even as owners of homes and businesses far from a water source were being added to the maps asked to pay far more for their coverage.
  • Mello-Roos: The tax you choose

    This multi-media, interactive series is about a special tax Californians pay without thought or question. It amassed $200 million last year in San Diego County. There are loose spending guidelines, but it is a virtual ATM for local governments. The Mello-Roos tax -- named after the two legislators who created it -- takes a vote of one person, most often a developer, to enact. Accountability is almost nonexistent. inewsource spent a year peeling back the layers of Mello-Roos in a way that had not been done in the 30 years that the tax existed. We gathered tax data on nearly one million properties in San Diego County, mapped it and made it interactive so homeowners could participate in the quest for accountability. We pored through thousands of pages of invoices to follow the spending. We filed dozens of public records requests. Our investigation revealed mistakes in tax bills (some homeowners paying as much as $6,000 a year too much), systemic inequities and lack of oversight. Our work launched a city audit (ongoing), exposed a school district’s inappropriate use of funds, and prompted that same district to launch a website for homeowners so they could verify the accuracy of their tax bills. Most importantly, the series spurred homeowners to take action, demanding answers and transparency from their elected officials.
  • Abandoned Homes

    The City of Columbus has more than 6,000 vacant or abandoned properties. When owners can't be tracked down, ABC 6 Investigators found that taxpayers are ultimately the ones held accountable for the mess left behind. Last year, $700,000 was spent to clean these places up. We worked to track down members of one LLC that owned nearly a dozen problem properties. Holding those owners accountable is easier said than done. Our investigation helped spark city action and discussion. City Council is proposing stiffer penalties and laws surrounding landlord accountability.
  • 43 years, 20 properties

    According to the St. Louis County Assessor’s Office, Webster University owns 20 taxable properties in Webster Groves — 11 of which are on a street adjacent to the university. As distrust between residents and the university has grown, the reporting done by myself and a colleague provided accurate and contextual information among the rumors and hyperbole.