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Local Reporting Network Archive

All entries from our Local Reporting Network.

How One West Virginia Supreme Court Justice Gave Natural Gas a Big Victory and Shortchanged Residents

Justice Beth Walker voted to reopen an already decided case around the time her husband owned stock in a variety of energy companies. And that’s not even why she’s been impeached.

What Happens When a Pipeline Runs Afoul of Government Rules? Authorities Change the Rules.

Federal authorities halted work on the massive Mountain Valley Pipeline this month after an appeals court ruled that federal agencies neglected to follow environmental protections.

Ben Carson Declared Mission Accomplished in East St. Louis — Where Public Housing Is Still a Disaster

The HUD secretary came to town last year and declared residents were no longer at risk, three decades after the federal government took over public housing here. In fact, the complexes are falling apart and a woman was killed in the weeks before his visit.

We Are Expanding Our Local Reporting Network. Submit Your Best Project Ideas for Investigating State Government.

The influence of state government is far-reaching, yet elected officials and state bureaucrats are getting ever less scrutiny. Send us ideas for accountability projects by Sept. 14.

What Do You Know About Public Housing in the U.S.? Help Us Investigate.

ProPublica is teaming up with The Southern Illinoisan to examine the public housing crisis in small and mid-sized cities around the country.

When Public Records Aren’t Public

In Elkhart, Indiana, even easy records can be hard to get. Trial exhibits? No. Appellate briefs? No. Police reports in the court file? No. And don’t even ask about moving those boxes.

Standing by Their Convictions

The DNA didn’t match. The witnesses weren’t sure. But the prosecution persisted.

Afraid of “Political Repercussions,” HUD Delayed Action on Crumbling Public Housing

As residents in Cairo, Illinois, dealt with mice, toxic mold and lead paint, HUD officials waited to step in, according to a report from the agency’s inspector general. HUD “could and should have done more to oversee it,” a new report says.

Trump Administration Neuters Nuclear Safety Board

Under a new order from the Energy Department, a nuclear safety board will have to fight for information about and access to nuclear laboratories. In the past, the board has brought serious problems at those labs to light.

HUD Is Failing to Protect Children From Lead Paint Poisoning, Audits Find

Two new reports found that HUD didn’t properly oversee inspections or removal of lead-based paint in public housing complexes across the country.

West Virginia Paid for a CEO to Go on a Trade Delegation to China. Turns Out, He Was Promoting His Company’s Interests, Too.

An executive accompanied state officials to China for a ceremony with President Donald Trump to sign a landmark deal last year. He also pushed his company’s interests, which the governor said Friday was not acceptable.

Oregon Court System Shields Evaluation of Alleged Killer

Last year, Oregon officials tried unsuccessfully to keep secret records on a man found “guilty except for insanity” in a 1996 kidnapping. Now, the state court system is refusing to release a key record in his new murder case even though it's not “legally confidential.”

Five First Responders to the Pulse Massacre. One Diagnosis: PTSD.

“My head’s still not right,” said one paramedic who responded to the Pulse nightclub shooting two years ago. He and some other responders say their departments haven’t given them the help they need.

The Government’s New Contractor to Run Los Alamos Includes the Same Manager It Effectively Fired for Safety Problems

The Department of Energy said it would seek new leadership for Los Alamos National Laboratory. But the University of California is still there, even after mismanagement caused it to lose its contract to run the lab — twice.

First Responders Speak Out About PTSD, Two Years After Pulse Nightclub Shooting

First responders who were on the scene at Pulse shared their consequent struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder at an event co-hosted by ProPublica, 90.7 WMFE and the Orlando Public Library.

The Family Plan: In Louisiana, Lawmakers Promote Bills That Help Their Relatives and Clients

One lawmaker supported a bill that would help his brother, who owns truck stop casinos. Another, a lawyer who represents physicians, sponsored a bill that helps doctors under investigation by the state medical board.

Legislators in Many States Can Push Bills They’d Profit From

The laws vary by state. In some, lawmakers are told to recuse themselves from votes that could create even the “appearance of impropriety.” In others, overlapping interests are seen as “almost inevitable.”

Louisiana Lawmakers Are Pushing Bills That Benefit Their Own Businesses. And It’s Perfectly Legal.

Legislators own everything from gas stations to nursing homes, yet they rarely recuse themselves on bills that directly affect them.

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