Last week the Board of Directors of the Wisconsin Center Investigative Journalism approved three policies — all of which are now posted on our website — providing insights into our standards for use of unnamed sources in news stories, how we approach the issue of diversity in our news coverage and operations, and how we handle personal information we receive from users of our website.
Together, we did it! Generous donors from across the nation helped the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism successfully attain a $50,000 matching grant from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation in Oklahoma. In fact, we exceeded the goal by $14,000, giving our $600,000 budget a strong start in 2016.
Update: This report was published on Sept. 20. Due to a technical error, on Sept. 13 the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism inadvertently published headlines, a summary and photo on its website, WisconsinWatch.org. The materials, which have been removed, are part of an upcoming report about the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp.
Exactly a year ago, the Wisconsin Legislature caught us sleeping. In a secret predawn move on June 5, 2013, legislators anonymously inserted a measure into the state budget. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Jason Stein broke the news in a tweet at 5:19 a.m. — the moment we’re posting this update, as we reflect on the first anniversary. The entire Legislature soon approved the two-sentence provision, titled “Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.” It would have evicted WCIJ from offices we share with our student interns on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, and would have made it illegal for UW employees to collaborate with WCIJ. With your help, our darkest hour became our finest hour.
State agencies’ hiring of outside contractors surged last year, according to a report quietly released by the state Department of Administration. The annual report, posted Monday on the DOA’s website, shows that state agencies spent $363.8 million on private contractors — an increase of 26 percent compared to the previous fiscal year.