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Brechner FOI Award winning team from The Miami Herald to be recognized at April 8 luncheon

Members of the Miami Herald project team that produced “Shakedown City,” which won the 2024 Brechner Freedom of Information Award will discuss their work at a luncheon in Gainesville, Florida, on Monday, April 8. All are welcome.

The event takes place from 11:30 a.m. -1 p.m. at the Cone Park Library, 2801 E. University Ave. The talk is sponsored by the Florida Free Speech Forum. Attendees can pay $20 for lunch or attend for free without lunch. Register here by April 1.

Shakedown City,” an investigation into government corruption within the city of Miami that spawned a series of investigations by the FBI, Internal Revenue Service, Securities and Exchange Commission and state ethics commission.

Investigative reporter Sarah Blaskey, Miami government reporter Joey
Flechas and senior investigations editor Casey Frank will discuss investigation
at the luncheon.

The journalists submitted more than 150 public records requests and battled almost daily with city attorneys when the requests were ignored. The Herald’s document-based reporting revealed that Mayor Francis Suarez secretly received $170,000 from a developer, and used his clout to secure 13 side jobs, including for crypto-related ventures, encouraging staff to convert paychecks to digital tokens.

Twenty news organizations throughout the United States and Canada submitted their records-based reporting to the annual competition. The Brechner Freedom of Information Award has been presented annually since 1986 to reward excellence in reporting that draws on government documents and data, shedding light on official secrecy. The award includes a $3,000 cash prize, made possible by an endowment created by the Brechner family.

Posted: March 27, 2024
Category: Brechner News
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