Reporter Alison Dirr just finished a yearlong internship with us, during which she covered the sprawling beat of Wisconsin’s fast-growing frac sand industry. We talk about that in the latest podcast. And below the audio link, further reflections from Dirr. Also, we now have music for the podcast. Alison Dirr: After a year as WisconsinWatch’s frac sand beat reporter, I’m leaving with a real appreciation of the complexity and nuance of this controversy. Continue Reading
The New England Center for Investigative Reporting has discovered that thousands of people are receiving non-FDA approved tests for Lyme disease, which may be giving unreliable results. The report includes a graphic showing the spread of Lyme disease over time — including to Wisconsin, which is one of the hotspots for the tick-borne disease. One of the testing companies is in Osceola, Wisconsin. Continue Reading
The platforms and resolutions from Wisconsin’s two parties convey vastly divergent political visions. If they serve as marching orders, they would take the state in profoundly different directions.
Obama’s climate plan could lead to more frac sand demand, the Lower Wisconsin Riverway Board loses a bid to stop mining within the riverway and North Carolina limits disclosure of fracking chemicals. Continue Reading
Lukas Keapproth, our globe-trotting former intern, was in Accra, Ghana Monday, where he watched the U.S.-Ghana World Cup soccer match with Ghanaian fans. He reported they were gracious after the U.S. beat Ghana 2-1 in the first-round match. See Lukas’ photos and video here.
Significantly, in all three areas under review in the report — tenure, turnover and reelection — the trends of the past several decades have not held true in the most recent elections.
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. Continue Reading
Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn implored the community to stop tolerating young men carrying guns. And he called on the governor and Legislature “to pass a law that makes these little monsters afraid to get locked up for possessing a gun.” Continue Reading
We launch a new feature today on the WisWatch blog: a roundup of the latest news in frac sand. This week: Glenwood City sand plant clears final hurdles, Buffalo County wins a court appeal of a permit, Gov. Scott Walker visits a frac sand mine. Continue Reading
Some critics of Wisconsin’s wolf management policies see the DNR’s “clarification” to the committee as a small example of the enormous clout of pro-hunting groups. Continue Reading
In some quarters, Randa’s ruling is being hailed as a righteous rebuke to partisan efforts to suppress free speech. But Paul S. Ryan, senior counsel with the nonprofit Campaign Legal Center in Washington. D.C., says Randa’s decision “flies in the face of well-established Supreme Court precedent.”
The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism took home eight awards Friday from the annual Milwaukee Press Club Excellence in Wisconsin Journalism contest, including six first place plaques. Continue Reading