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 "finance" ...

  • Capitol Gains

    A unique in-depth investigation into South Carolina’s loophole-ridden campaign finance system where vague reporting requirements and lax oversight allow lawmakers to profit from public office and to use their campaign war chests like personal ATM machines.
  • ACLU of Michigan: Flint Water Crisis

    This nomination is made by Kary Moss, Executive Director of the ACLU of Michigan, for work performed by the ACLU of Michigan’s Investigative Reporter, Curt Guyette. Curt’s work was pivotal in exposing the disastrous results of the State of Michigan’s decision to take the City of Flint off of the Detroit Water system and instead use the Flint River. At the time, the City was under the control of state-appointed emergency managers who had made the decision to switch the source of the City’s water as a cost-cutting measure. Two years ago the ACLU of Michigan created a new position of investigative report to examine and report on the repercussions of the State of Michigan’s use of a law that allowed it put an emergency manager in control of the city’s finances, divesting locally elected authorities of their powers. ACLU of Michigan legal staff provided additional help in filing Freedom of Information Act requests and helping Curt gain access to State of Michigan press briefings.
  • Broken System, Missing Money?

    KOB's investigative team exposed a serious blind spot in New Mexico's campaign finance system. The system is supposed to give voters honest and accurate information about who is bankrolling political campaigns in the state, but KOB found a $300,000 discrepancy in records tied to 11 elected leaders alone. The findings prove that it's nearly impossible to accurately follow the political money trail in New Mexico with confidence. Numerous legislators are now calling for reform and have drafted proposals and legislation as a result of KOB’s reporting.
  • What Voters Don't Know: Tales of Campaign Finance Subterfuge

    It's easier now than ever for political candidates and their parties to take in and spend huge amounts money in perfectly legal, aboveboard transactions -- and for others to do so on their behalf. Still, there's plenty going on in the world of political money that intentionally is kept in the shadows, whether in the name of monetary or political profit, to keep benefactors' roles secret or simply to fatten a candidate's campaign fund with creative accounting. All of this activity keeps crucial information from the voting public. The Center for Responsive Politics' entry of five stories that sheds light on several different political money schemes that twisted the standard template of candidates, PACs and parties raising and spending funds and reporting details of those activities to regulators.
  • Rep. Steve Stockman investigation

    Sunlight began investigating allegations of campaign finance violations by Rep. Steve Stockman (R-Texas). In 2014, Sunlight published a series of stories about the questionable practices, and after Sunlight's reporting, the Office of Congressional Ethics launched an investigation into the congressman's campaign. The OCE went on to recommend a subpoena for Rep. Stockman.
  • The Politics of Big Telecom

    The largest U.S. telecommunications companies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars on lobbying, political contributions and influence campaigns that shape laws and regulations that will have long-lasting effects on how American businesses and citizens will pay for and get the online information they need to manage their everyday lives. For "The Politics of Big Telecom," the Center for Public Integrity combed through large databases of campaign finances, tax filings and regulatory reports, and interviewed dozens of people from top government officials to average people on the street to show how large telecommunications companies shape public policy to defend profits, hold on to market power and reduce choices for the public.
  • Money Down the Drain

    In Money Down the Drain, Northeast Ohio Media Group reporters explored whether there is a less costly, greener alternative to the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District’s $3 billion plan to manage stormwater and sewage by boring giant tunnels beneath the region. The series mapped the district’s history of favoring so-called “gray infrastructure” to comply with federal clean water laws and debunked sewer officials’ claims that green technologies – such as water retention ponds - would inherently be more costly than tunnels. The reporters researched the efficacy of alternative sewer management plans and visited Philadelphia, considered by many to be leading a movement by U.S. cities considering greener solutions to their messy sewage overflow problems. The four-part series concluded with an examination of potential opportunities to transform large expanses of vacant property in Cleveland into park-like stormwater retention features. The team did not set out to prove that green infrastructure is superior to tunnels. Rather, they aimed to expose the district’s failure so far to consider alternatives that officials in other cities believe could save their ratepayers millions – if not billions – of dollars, while driving home to readers just how much the tunnels will cost them. Within a month of the series’ conclusion, sewer district officials announced that they would spend $900,000 on green projects near a major road expansion program and pledged to study the possibility of replacing large stretches of the planned tunnel with green infrastructure.
  • City Savings Over Police Safety - How The Ford Crown Vic Still Haunts Fort Worth

    The call came in on police scanners as an accident - Two cars, one was on fire and a major highway may need to be shut down. Turns out, after witness and chopper video was secured, our station had confirmed the car on fire was a police patrol car; but not just any patrol car, a Ford Crown Victoria. Yes, THE Ford Crown Vic. The scene was, unfortunately, a familiar one for the City of Fort Worth. During the height of the Ford Crown Vic revolt, Fort Worth Police lost one of its own officers. He was responding to a late-night DWI call when he was hit from behind. He was trapped in his car and burned to death in his Ford Crown Vic. More than seven years later, it felt like history was repeating itself. But why? The city had promised they'd make things right by making sure no other officer was ever put in that position again. The CBS 11 I-Team dug through years of records to find that wasn't true. That in fact, the City of Fort Worth had chosen saving money or police safety.
  • Motorola's Reign is Taxpayers' Bane

    These stories examined how a single company, Motorola, has gained a vise grip over the nation’s multibillion-dollar emergency two-way radio market, which is financed solely by taxpayers. The cumulative cost of this near monopoly is easily in the hundreds of millions of dollars and more likely in the billions of dollars.
  • Fixed Fortunes

    In the era of billion-dollar presidential campaigns and political groups that can raise donations in unlimited amounts from almost any source, we are used to reading stories about the large amounts of money that special interests invest in politics. But what do they get out of the government they spend so much trying to influence by supporting political campaigns and parties or hiring well-connected lobbyists? Bill Allison and Sarah Harkins set out to answer that question, compiling huge amounts of data from multiple federal sources, identifying the biggest corporate political donors over a six year period, and then compiling numbers on the various federal support -- contracts, grants, loans, loan guarantees and various programs adopted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis -- to attempt to show what the biggest donors get from the federal government.