Local Reporting Network Archive

Permit for Controversial $9 Billion Plastics Plant in “Chemical Alley” to Be Put on Hold

Proposed emissions from the plant would triple the levels of cancer-causing chemicals in one of the most toxic areas of the U.S., but the Army Corps of Engineers intends to suspend the permit.

Following Our Investigation, the Director of Maine’s Public Defense Agency Resigns

Amid mounting criticism of his management of attorneys, finances and the quality of legal services for Maine’s poor, John Pelletier stepped down as executive director of the Maine Commission on Indigent Legal Services. His last day will be Dec. 11.

Prometieron ayuda para las personas con discapacidades de desarrollo. En lugar de recibirla, enfrentan retrasos y rechazos.

Arizona se conoce como el mejor lugar del país para las personas con discapacidades de desarrollo. Sin embargo, debido a problemas con sus trámites, el estado ha rechazado a miles de personas que buscan asistencia.

Despite What the Logging Industry Says, Cutting Down Trees Isn’t Stopping Catastrophic Wildfires

For decades, Oregon’s timber industry has promoted the idea that private, logged lands are less prone to wildfires. The problem? Science doesn’t support that.

When Falling Behind on Rent Leads to Jail Time

Evictions in Arkansas can snowball from criminal charges to arrests to jail time because of a 119-year-old law that mostly impacts female, Black and low-income renters. Even prosecutors have called it unconstitutional.

Maine Officials Propose Doubling Budget for Agency Charged With Defending the Poor

Lawyers proposed opening Maine’s first two public defender offices and a substantial pay raise for court-appointed counsel in a $35.4 million budget approved by the Maine Commission on Indigent Legal Services.

To Reclaim Ancestral Land, All Native Hawaiians Need Is a $300,000 Mortgage and to Wait in Line for Decades

A 100-year-old program created to provide Native Hawaiians — especially poor ones — land to live on after the U.S. annexed the islands is failing. Thousands have died waiting in line and even more can’t afford the mortgages they’d need.

How We Found Low-Income Hawaiians Were Left Behind by the Homesteading Program

ProPublica’s first-of-its-kind analysis showed that a Native Hawaiian housing program left behind much of the community it was supposed to help. Here’s how we did it.

Alaska’s “Him Too” Moment: When Politicians and Allies Come With Accusations of Their Own

As scandals force Alaska politicians to resign, nowhere have the accusations been more severe than this remote rural district, where male leaders are proving to be part of the very problems they’re supposed to be solving.

The Elk, the Tourists and the Missing Coal Country Jobs

A proposed wildlife center got a $12 million federal grant after promising to bring millions of dollars and thousands of tourists to eastern Kentucky. Four years later, residents are still waiting for the jobs they were promised.

Maine Hires Lawyers With Criminal Records to Defend Poor Residents. The Governor Wants Reform.

Gov. Janet Mills publicly called for a bipartisan effort to reform Maine’s defense system for poor people accused of crimes in response to an investigation by The Maine Monitor and ProPublica.

Help Us Investigate Collection Practices at Virginia Colleges and Universities

Academic institutions are sending students’ unpaid tuition bills to collection agencies and courthouses. Has this happened to you or anyone you know?

Four Types of Scandals Utility Companies Get Into With Money From Your Electric Bills

When power companies across the country fight for favorable legislation, sometimes their efforts cross the line and customers pay the price.

Electionland 2020: Florida Felon Voting, Election Websites, DOJ Policies and More

This week’s headlines on mask-wearing at the polls, ongoing litigation and misinformation.

Inside the Utility Company Lobbying Blitz That Will Hike Electric Bills

Democrats who campaigned against Virginia’s largest public utility, Dominion Energy, swept into office. Then the company’s lobbying efforts kicked into high gear. Here’s how it fought against legislation meant to lower residents’ electric bills.

ProPublica to Launch New Regional Units in the South and Southwest; ProPublica Illinois to Expand to Midwest Regional Newsroom

Nonprofit Newsroom Also Launches Distinguished Fellows Program to Support Local Investigative Journalism

She Was Afraid of Her Lawyer. Then the Text Messages Started.

Leah Kerwin started receiving daily texts and videos explicitly requesting oral sex or intercourse. They came from her court-appointed attorney, who had already been suspended for other misconduct.

Maine Hires Lawyers With Criminal Records to Defend Its Poorest Residents

Maine is the only state in the country with no public defender system. Instead, legal services for the poor are left to private attorneys, who face disproportionately high amounts of discipline, and an office that doesn’t supervise them.

What Happens After a Debt Collection Machine Grinds to a Halt

One year ago, Methodist Le Bonheur hospital system erased nearly $12 million of medical debt after an investigation from MLK50 and ProPublica. We checked in with two women who have new jobs and a new optimism about their future.

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