Looking forward to the future of journalism

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for Feb 5, 2018

Luxury condos in San Antonio received tax incentives

Welcome to the latest installment of the Texas watchdog journalism roundup, a series that showcases hard-hitting investigative stories in Texas that uncovered hidden facts, held officials accountable and demonstrated why journalism matters.

City of San Antonio awards developers $10 million in incentives for luxury condo tower — $173,400 for each unit | The San Antonio Express-News

A city program to encourage people to live in downtown San Antonio is spending $10 million in tax incentives and fee waivers on the Arts Residences and Thompson San Antonio hotel, a 20-story luxury tower of hotel rooms and condos. Critics call it a “ludicrous” amount of money to spend on housing that few residents can afford. Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for Jan. 14, 2018

Texas Governor Greg Abbott greets supporters

If it seems like facts no longer matter in politics, there’s a sliver of good news:

Investigative journalists are still writing powerful, evidence-based stories that help us understand a complicated world.

Here are the latest examples of watchdog stories in Texas that show why facts still matter.

Gov. Abbott’s appointees have given him more than $14 million | The San Antonio Express-News

“Despite pleas for more diversity and less of a big-money presence, Gov. Greg Abbott’s appointments to state boards and commissions remain mostly Anglo, largely male and liberally sprinkled with donors to a giant campaign war chest years in the making, a San Antonio Express-News analysis shows.” Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for Dec. 19, 2017

Barge on the San Antonio River

If it feels like you’re trapped in a topsy-turvy world where facts no longer matter, there’s a sliver of good news:

Investigative journalists are still writing powerful, evidence-based stories that help us understand a complicated world.

Here are the latest examples of watchdog stories in Texas that show why facts still matter.

Accountant tied to embezzlement at Centro San Antonio has history of bank fraud, bankruptcy | The San Antonio Express-News

The accountant suspected of embezzling $260,000 from Centro San Antonio, a nonprofit organization focused on revitalizing downtown, was hired without a background check. It turns out she had been convicted of felony bank fraud and theft by check. Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for Dec. 10, 2017

Houses built in flood plain in Harris County

At a time when it feels like facts don’t matter, there’s a sliver of good news.

Investigative journalists are still writing stories that help us understand a complicated world.

Here are the latest examples of watchdog stories in Texas that uncovered hidden facts and held officials accountable: Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for Oct. 29, 2017

The Texas Tribune investigates furniture rental companies

The latest investigative stories in Texas that uncovered hidden facts and held officials accountable:

How renting furniture in Texas can land you in jail | The Texas Tribune

“Rental companies can avail themselves of a little-known law written decades ago by the rental industry lobby — in Texas and in many other states — that can turn a dispute over a love seat or big screen TV into a criminal offense report, a trip to jail and even felony theft charges.” Read more …

Texas watchdog journalism roundup: The impact of Tropical Storm Harvey

Texas National Guard responds to Tropical Storm Harvey

A fresh batch of must-read investigative stories that uncovered hidden facts and held officials accountable across Texas:

Fifty-one inches: Terror, heartbreak and heroism as five souls brave the worst storm in U.S. history | Houston Chronicle

A gripping narrative that focuses on the plight of five people caught in the path of Tropical Storm Harvey. Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for July 23, 2017

Gilbert Flores shot by Bexar County deputies

Investigative stories across Texas that uncovered hidden facts and held officials accountable.

Decision to ‘end this’ after 12-minute standoff left Gilbert Flores dead | San Antonio Express-News

After a 12-minute confrontation with a belligerent, knife-wielding man who said he wanted to die, two Bexar County sheriff’s deputies turned to each other and agreed on “ending this,” according to their sworn civil depositions obtained by the San Antonio Express-News. But the deputies decided to open fire moments after the man, Gilbert Flores, raised his arms in apparent surrender. Read more …

Must reads: Texas watchdog journalism roundup for July 9, 2017

Lost Immigrants

Investigative stories across Texas that uncovered hidden facts and held officials accountable.

Lack of sharing, limited resources impede identification of migrant remains | San Antonio Express-News

“Funded by a grant from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting, reporter Aaron Nelsen and photographer Julysa Sosa traveled more than 3,000 miles for three weeks chronicling a caravan of Central American mothers and other family members on a heart-wrenching journey: trying to find out what happened to their loved ones, who disappeared while making the dangerous trek to the United States. But many are denied even the bitter closure of burial because lack of shared DNA databases, international conflicts and shifting immigration policies are preventing the identification of an untold number of remains.” Story by Aaron Nelsen Read more