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Corrections

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Because of an editing error, the July 29th post, A Reading List for Following the Debt Ceiling Drama originally said that new constitutional amendments require the ratification of two-thirds of states. In fact, they require the ratification of three-fourths of states.

The July 28 post, ProPublica’s Unofficial Guide to BP Spill Claims, said that the $20 billion compensation fund created by BP was established to cover claims and known as the Gulf Coast Claims Facility . The fund in fact covers both claims and other expenses such as court judgments, and the Gulf Coast Claims Facility draws from the compensation fund.

The June 9, 2010, post, Top Officer Says Military Takes Brain Injuries ‘Extremely Seriously,’originally said Gen. Peter Chiarelli was the Army's second in command. He is in fact the Army's vice chief of staff.

The May 4, 2010, post, Congressmen Raised Concerns About BP Safety, mistakenly said the 2006 Prudhoe Bay oil spill involved 4,800 gallons of oil. It should have said it involved 4,800 barrels of oil.

The Apr. 28, 2010, post, New Tricks for Those Republican ‘Census’ Mailers, mistakenly said a letter sent to Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele was authored by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif). The letter was actually written by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).

The April 20, 2010, post, Charges Aside, What About Goldman’s Nondisclosure of a Potential Lawsuit?, has been corrected to note that SEC rules do not require disclosure about a pending legal proceeding if the claim for damages does not exceed 10 percent of the company's overall assets. It had previously said only that the SEC does not require disclosure of a Wells notice.

The April 5, 2010, post, Reporting Network Doc Squad, mistakenly included Delaware and Georgia among the states that currently restrict public records access for people of out of state.

The March 29, 2010, post, Data Show Bank Regulator Goes Easy on Enforcement, has been corrected to remove language calling the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency a “little known bank regulator.”

The March 25, 2010, post, Treasury, Ahem, Clarifies Goals for the Mortgage Mod Program, originally misstated the Treasury official’s estimate of how many homeowners will convert from trial to permanent mods. It said that “Treasury thinks that somewhere between 50 and 66 percent of homeowners in trial mods will fall out,” when the official said that between 50 and 66 percent of those homeowners will convert to a permanent mod.

The March 24, 2010, post, Has Health Care Bickering Blocked Afghan Police Training Inquiry?, originally said that Sen. Mitch McConnell is the Senate majority leader. He is actually the Senate Republican leader.

The Feb. 22, 2010, post, Gas Drillers Plead Guilty to Felony Dumping Violations, originally said that John Morgan was a subcontractor for Swamp Angel Energy. He should have been identified as the site supervisor. The story also implied that the Swamp Angel well was drilled into the Marcellus Shale. Although the well is located in the Marcellus Shale area, the story should have said that it was drilled into a different geologic formation.

The Feb. 17, 2010, post, Our New List of Stimulus Investigations, originally said that another $333 billion in stimulus funds is in the pipeline to be spent. That figure actually refers to stimulus funds that have been obligated. The amount of money in the pipeline -- that is, obligated but not spent -- is some $150 billion.

The Feb. 3, 2010, post, Lobbyists Help Smooth the Way for a Tax Break for Foreign Rum Maker, said that Diageo spent $2.25 million on in-house lobbyists and $770,000 on lobbyists from DLA Piper. It should have said that Diageo spent a total of $2.25 million on lobbying activities in 2009, including $770,000 to DLA Piper.

Feb. 8, 2010: The Transparency Tracker incorrectly reported posting dates later than the actual posting dates of the open sites at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of the Treasury, Department of the Interior, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development due to a programming error.

The Feb. 7, 2010, post, Administration Signals It Won’t Push Legal Limits of Terrorism Detention, incorrectly stated that the al-Marri decision in the Court of Appeals still stands. In fact, the Supreme Court vacated the decision, thus depriving it of value as a legal precedent.

The Feb. 3, 2010, post, Lobbyists Help Smooth the Way for a Tax Break for Foreign Rum Maker, said Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi was stepping up his lobbying efforts. It should have said that Puerto Rico Gov. Luis Fortuño was stepping up his lobbying efforts.

In the Jan. 26, 2010, post, Judiciary Chairman Conyers to Host Super Bowl Fundraiser, originally said that Rep. John Conyers’ PAC is called "Moving America Forward." The correct name of Conyers’ PAC is "America Forward Leadership PAC."

In the Dec. 16, 2009, post Real Student Default Rates Much Higher Than Previously Known, we reported that the Department of Education was projecting that 47 percent of the federal money lent to students at for-profit education institutions in 2007 would never be repaid. We also said that the department had estimated that 40 percent of the money lent to students at for-profit institutions between 2003 and 2006 would be written off. Those statements—a main thrust of the article—are not accurate. Read our note detailing the error.

The headline of the Dec. 7, 2009, post, After Donor’s Letter, Sen. Feinstein Supports Study That Could Delay Fish-Protection Plan, previously said that a study Sen. Feinstein supports is “helping slow down” a fish protection plan. In fact, the plan is already in place. While the study may delay it, it hasn’t yet done so.

Due to poor math by an editor, the headline of the Dec. 5, 2009, post, Bank Failure Friday Roars Back: Six Banks Fail, Costing FDIC $2.6 Billion, misstated the cost to the FDIC. The failures are actually projected to cost the agency about $2.4 billion.

The Nov. 4, 2009, post, More Fun With Stimulus Numbers, originally said that the White House had released a report on stimulus jobs. In fact, the report was released by the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, which is an independent government board created by stimulus package. The chairman, Earl Devaney, was appointed by the president.

The Nov. 3, 2009, post, At University of Phoenix, Allegations of Enrollment Abuses Persist, originally stated that the graduation rate of students undertaking associate degrees at the university is 37 percent. In fact, the rate is 27 percent.

The Oct. 28, 2009, post, Grading the Public Options That Already Exist, originally indicated that if veterans did not sign up within five years of discharge, they would not qualify for Veterans health care. In fact, if a veteran qualifies under the VA’s enrollment specifications, they can qualify for care, regardless of how much time has passed since discharge.

The Oct. 20, 2009, post, Medicare Drug Planners Now Lobbyists, With Billions at Stake, originally stated lawmakers and aides crafted the Medicare Part D plan four years ago. It should have said six years ago. The article also said that Billy Tauzin was a former senator in the 29th graph. He was actually a former representative.

The Sept. 22, 2009, post, “Stockholder Suit Targets Troubled Mental Health Chain,” originally stated the Justice Department opened an investigation and the Illinois Department of Children and Families froze admissions of foster children to Riveredge Hospital near Chicago in response to investigations by the Chicago Tribune and ProPublica. It should have said those actions were initiated following the Tribune reports.

The Sept. 21, 2009, post, Frack Fluid Spill in Dimock Contaminates Stream, Killing Fish, originally included a description of the spill by Vincent Fronda that actually referred to a Sept. 3 discharge near the Cabot well site in question. It was several hundred feet away and separate from the fracturing fluid spill that occurred last Wednesday. The photograph that accompanied the story, which was sent to ProPublica by a Dimock resident, was also of that earlier spill. Both the photo and the descriptive passage have been removed.

The Sept. 11, 2009, post, StimCities Update: Biden’s Account Clashes with Reality on Ground, originally placed Charlotte, N.C., in the wrong Carolina.

The Sept. 9, 2009, post, Congressman Announces Plan to Reform U.S. System to Care for Injured Civilian Contractors, originally stated that the study by insurance broker Aon Corp. was released Wednesday, Sept. 9. It was actually released on Friday, Sept. 4, 2009.

The Aug. 18, 2009, posts, Opening the Window on Foreign Lobbying and Adding It Up: The Top Players in Foreign Agent Lobbying, have been corrected. Due to a data entry error, the Foreign Lobbying Influence Tracker contained duplicate entries for fees paid to the Livingston Group by some its clients. The Sunlight Foundation has eliminated the duplicate records, and we have updated related totals in stories and charts about the database.

The Aug. 7, 2009, post, FBI Raids New Orleans Police Department, originally stated that five people were wounded during the Danziger Bridge incident. In fact, it was four people.

The Aug. 5, 2009, article, Stimulus Spending Fails to Follow Unemployment, Poverty, inadvertently implied that stimulus spending on tax cuts, increases in unemployment compensation and Medicaid funding were not intended to create or sustain a substantial number of jobs. The article should have made the distinction between “direct” jobs, such as those created by infrastructure funding, and “indirect” jobs. Tax cuts and spending on government benefits do lead to indirect job creation as they contribute to demand for goods and services.

The April 30, 2009, post, New Arrest Heats Up Pension Kickback Scandal, said that Markstone Capital Group was named in an indictment by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo regarding fraud in the public pension system. In fact, Markstone was not named in that indictment. Rather, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sent a letter to Markstone's founder, Elliott Broidy, as part of the commission’s inquiry into public pension funds. The letter requested financial information relating to Broidy’s time as a commissioner on the Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension fund. In particular, the letter requested details of Broidy's communications with two firms named in the Cuomo indictment, Aldus Equity and placement agent DAV/Wetherly Financial. Broidy resigned from the LA pension board after the SEC's inquiry was publicly disclosed.

The July 19, 2009, post, Introducing Stimulus Spot Check, originally said ProPublica is looking at a random sample of about 500 bridge construction projects nationwide. We’re actually looking at a sample of about 500 road and bridge projects.

The July 17, 2009, post, On Stimulus Job Counts, California Goes Its Own Way, incorrectly stated the base cost of improving as $739,014. It’s actually $739,014,000.

A caption on the July 14, 2009, post, "Disappearance of Privacy Board From White House Web Site Raises Questions," previously suggested 9/11 Commission chairman Thomas Kean said the Whitehouse.gov’s deletion of the reference to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board was “extremely disappointing.” In fact, Kean was referring to administration’s overall lack of progress staffing the board.

The July 13, 2009, post, “Schwarzenegger Replaces Most of State Nursing Board,” incorrectly referred to former Board of Registered Nursing vice president Elizabeth O. Dietz as a professor of nursing at San Jose State. Although the board’s web site lists that as her current affiliation, the university said she retired in July 2008.

The July 10, 2009, post, Gov’t Foreclosure Program: Who Are The Holdouts?, incorrectly stated that Acorn Housing organized the campaign against four non-participants. In fact, it was ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.

The July 9, 2009, post, Today’s Stimulus Debate: City vs. Country , incorrectly cited the Philadelphia Enquirer. In fact, the newspaper is called the Philadelphia Inquirer.

The July 8, 2009, post, GAO Slams Flimsy Auditing Rules for Stimulus Dollars, inaccurately stated that the deadline for states to begin audits of their stimulus spending is at least six months after the end of the fiscal year. In fact, the deadline is nine months after the end of the fiscal year.

The June 30, 2009, post, After Call From Senator Inouye’s Office, Small Hawaii Bank Got U.S. Aid, inaccurately said that Rep. Maxine Waters arranged a meeting between regulators and OneUnited of Massachusetts. She actually arranged a meeting between regulators and the National Bankers Association, whose chairman was the general counsel of OneUnited. A person at the meeting said the discussion focused on OneUnited.

The June 23, 2009, post, Madoff Client Jeffry Picower Netted $5 Billion—Likely More Than Madoff Himself, originally stated that the Picower foundation gave out a little under $207 million in donations from 1995 to 2008. The foundation actually doled out more than $235 million in donations.

The June 16, 2009, post, Business Jet Group Tries to Block FOIA Request, originally misstated the name of the BARR Program as "Blocked Aircraft Registration Request." BARR stands for "Block Aircraft Registration Request."

The June 12, 2009, post, Stimulus Threatens to Cause ‘Full-Blown Trade War,’ mistakenly stated that Associated General Contractors represents 7 million workers. It represents construction companies whose workforce numbers about 7 million.

The May 20, 2009, post, Deficit Skyrockets at Pension Guaranty Fund, mistakenly stated the PBGC's deficit as $35 billion. It is $33.5 billion.

The April 30, 2009, post, Decoder: The Pension Fund Scandal, mistakenly stated that the California State Teachers’ Retirement System had moved to limit campaign contributions to members of its oversight board but had been thwarted in a legal challenge. We should have said it was the California Public Employees Retirement System that attempted to limit contributions.

The April 9, 2009, post, Catch-22: Can AIG Repay Taxpayers?, originally stated that AIG “ditched plans” to sell two of its insurance subsidiaries, Alico and AIA. In fact, AIG says selling the companies is still an option in its effort to repay federal bailout loans. The company’s plans did change insofar as AIG gave the Federal Reserve Bank ownership interest in the two subsidiaries in return for a $26 billion reduction in the amount owed to the Fed. The company is now considering a wider ranch of options than simply selling the subsidiaries. The original post also stated that the transaction resulted in an additional loan to AIG. In fact, the additional $30 billion lending facility, announced on the same day, came from the Treasury, not the Fed. AIG has not yet tapped that line of credit, according to spokeswoman Christina Pretto.

The March 12, 2009, post, Talking With the Former FOIA Czar, originally stated former Justice Dept. FOIA official Dan Metcalfe was a "Reagan appointee." In fact, he was appointed to head the Office of Information and Privacy during the Reagan administration but was already working at the Justice Department.

The Feb. 13, 2009, post, Quick Picks: Ex-Sen Lobbies for Chems and Kids Sent to Slammer for Cash, originally identified the subject of a Mother Jones article as Sen. Byron Dorgan. It was actually former Sen. Richard Bryan.

The Feb. 12, 2009, feature, Development Bank Wrestles With Toxic Securities Losses, originally referred to a branch of the Inter-American Developoment Bank as the Office of Review and Evaluation. The branch, which oversaw a report on the bank's losses, is actually named the Office of Oversight and Evaluation.

The Jan. 7, 2009, article, Bush Signing Statements Will Retire With Their Author, originally identified Louis Fisher as the Congressional Research Service's expert on separation of powers. He is actually an expert on separation of powers with the Law Library of Congress.

The Dec. 24, 2008, feature, Where Things Stand: Air Marshals Under Arrest, originally stated one air marshal was convicted of felony injury to a child. The air marshal, Louie Esparza, pleaded guilty to the charge, but the judge withheld judgment pending completion of the probation.

The Dec. 21, 2008, feature, How the West’s Energy Boom Could Threaten Drinking Water for 1 in 12 Americans, originally stated that on Dec. 19, the Bureau of Land Management had auctioned off 359,000 acres of land for natural gas drilling near Moab, Utah. In fact, as a result of protests over that lease sale, the BLM made a last-minute change to the total amount and auctioned 148,598 acres of land. The story also refers to a study comparing real pollution at 25 mines to that anticipated by the EPA. That study was commissioned by Earthworks, not the Environmental Working Group, and was authored by James Kuipers and Ann Maest.

The Dec. 18, 2008, article, Who’s Not on the Clinton Foundation Donor List?, originally stated that Clinton had not yet identified donors to the Clinton Presidential Library. In fact, Clinton Foundation funded the library, and its donors are represented in the list made public Dec. 18.

The Dec. 11, 2008, article, Report Calls Alhurra a Failure, included an update stating that the University of Missouri recently won a $500,000 contract to train Alhurra reporters. In fact, Alhurra’s overall budget for journalism training in 2009 is $500,000. University of Missouri associate professor Kent S. Collins said he was paid a total of $26,600 to train Alhurra reporters. While the Broadcasting Board of Governors has referred to Collin’s report on Alhurra as a University of Missouri study, Collins said his work was done on a private basis and is not connected to the university or its journalism program.

The Nov. 3, 2008, article, Health Officials Still Accounting for Asbestos Mined in Montana, originally stated that deaths resulting from asbestosis in Libby, Montana were 40-80 percent higher than expected, according to a CDC study. In fact, the study found the deaths were 40 to 80 times higher.

The Nov. 20, 2008, article I Beg Your Pardon: Who Will Bush Let Off the Hook? originally stated that Sen. Ted Stevens has served in the Senate for 50 years. He has served for 40 years.

The Nov. 13, 2008, article Buried Secrets: Is Natural Gas Drilling Endangering U.S. Water Supplies? originally stated that Theo Colborn collected and tested water and soil samples. Rather, she did not do that work herself but compiled such information from other organizations and agencies that did.

The Sept. 3, 2008, article NYC Council to Hold Hearing on Gas Drilling Near City Water Supply originally stated that the letter sent from the New York City Department of Environmental Protection to New York state officials was dated Aug. 6. It was dated July 18.

The Aug. 13, 2008, article The Administration's Latest Critic: The Chamber of Commerce originally quoted U.S. Chamber of Commerce Director of Immigration Policy Angelo Amador as saying that the Chamber is generally viewed as "a friendly administration tool." We misheard. Amador actually said the Chamber generally views the administration as "a friendly administration."

The July 16, 2008, article Republicans Block Presidential Library Disclosure Bill originally quoted Stevens' spokesman Steve Wackowski as saying that Stevens had never put a hold on the bill. Wackowski subsequently e-mailed to say that his first statement was incorrect and that Stevens had in fact put a hold on the bill.

The July 14, 2008, article How One Mid-Size Paper Took On Blackwater originally stated that the News & Observer employs 260 journalists. In fact, with recent cuts, the newsroom’s size is under 200 editorial staff. Additionally, the News & Observer’s Steve Riley told us the paper’s coverage on Blackwater began in 2002; the paper subsequently informed us the initial story was in 2001.

The July 10, 2008, article Big Pharma Limits Small Gifts to Doctors incorrectly described a disclosure statement filed with Stanford University by Dr. Alan Schatzberg. The researcher told the university that his holdings in a pharmaceutical company whose drug he was studying were valued at "over" $100,000. The post did not include a full account of the university's response to statements by Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA). Stanford said that after filing his disclosure form, Schatzberg told the university his stock was worth more than $6 million.

The July 9, 2008, article Voice of America to Cut Language Services originally described a reduction to seven language services. It has been changed to clearly indicate that it is VOA's radio services that are being cut. Also the post originally referred to cuts in the Tibetan services, which were only slated for reductions.

The July 8, 2008, article Alhurra's Baghdad Bureau Mired in Controversy originally misidentified the senior diplomat who wrote an e-mail critical of Alhurra as Christopher Hill. The e-mail was written by Christopher Ross. It also referred to a "business manager, who approves checks, pays bill and sends thick envelopes of petty cash to Baghdad each month." The practice of sending cash from the U.S. is no longer in effect.

The June 30, 2008, article BBG Responds to ProPublica's Alhurra Investigation -- And We Have Some Questions for Them incorrectly stated that Alhurra had not received a “clean” financial audit. It has received such audits.

The June 24, 2008, article Alhurra Paid Former White House Aides, Washington Journalists originally stated that Amity Shlaes received $500 for an appearance on Alhurra. She received $300.

The June 22, 2008, article Lost in Translation originally stated that Alhurra president Brian Conniff "sat in on a morning editorial meeting" conducted wholly in Arabic. Conniff actually stood outside the door of the room where the meeting was conducted. Also, an e-mail from Alberto Fernandez was incorrectly stated as being sent to Under Secretary of State Karen Hughes in May 2007. It was sent in March 2007. The story also incorrectly stated that according to one set of ratings, "Alhurra is the number four network in Iraq, behind Al-Jazeera, and two others." While Alhurra is number four, it ranks ahead of Al-Jazeera in those ratings. Finally, the story also incorrectly stated that James Glassman served for six months as chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors. He actually served for one year.

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