Grant boosts investigation of Wisconsin water issues, experiment in journalism education at UW-Madison

Wisconsin’s water quality and supply will be investigated by University of Wisconsin-Madison journalism students, the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and others through a $35,000 grant announced by the Online News Association. The project, titled The Confluence: A Live News Experiment Covering Wisconsin Waters, connects journalism courses, WCIJ, Madison Commons, state newspapers, and public and commercial broadcast outlets, as well as volunteer citizen water monitoring.

Polling expert Charles Franklin to deliver keynote at Wisconsin Watchdog Awards

Charles Franklin, a nationally recognized polling expert, will deliver the keynote address at the fourth annual Wisconsin Watchdog Awards.

Your Right to Know: AG’s office could do more on openness

By Jonathan Anderson
Should enforcement of Wisconsin’s open records and open meetings laws depend on individual citizens having to file often costly and protracted lawsuits?
That is one option prescribed under these laws, and those who prevail in such cases can recover attorney’s fees.
But the laws also contain provisions intended to help people resolve disputes in a [...]

UW-Madison students play major role as Center wins eight Milwaukee Press Club awards

The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism received eight awards in the Milwaukee Press Club’s annual Awards for Excellence in Wisconsin Journalism, which were announced today. The Center now has won 25 awards from the press club, receiving eight in 2013, four in 2012 and five in 2011.

Investigative reporter Umhoefer to receive Wisconsin Watchdog Award

Note: This post was updated on April 9 to include additional sponsors.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel investigative reporter Dave Umhoefer, winner of a Pulitzer Prize for his 2008 investigation into pension padding in Milwaukee County, has been named the 2014 recipient of the Distinguished Wisconsin Watchdog Award.
The award is a highlight of the fourth annual Wisconsin Watchdog [...]

Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council bestows annual ‘Opee’ Awards

For 2013-14, the Council is bestowing six Opees to individuals and groups. Five of the awards are positive; the No Friend of Openness Award is not.

Your Right to Know: Walker must answer questions on emails

Apparently, many of the hundreds of open records requests being made of Walker’s county office were going to the Walker campaign for review. Clearly, these were all public records and the campaign should have had no involvement whatsoever in their review or release.

Walker camp irked by records requests, emails show

Walker and his staff felt beleaguered by the volume of records requests from political opponents, and at times expressed scorn for the requesters. But they also discussed ways to use the law to their advantage, and asserted their commitment to obeying it.

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