Last week, we got to know a handful of ambitious projects from local newsrooms. This week, here’s more from newsrooms that are even smaller (including a newsroom of one).
I’m going to get out of the way quickly so you can dig in.
The newsroom: Lancaster (Ohio) Eagle-Gazette, about five in the newsroom
The project: Ongoing coverage that led to the mayor’s resignation.
How it got started: The reporting started after the mayor was elected, reporter Spencer Remoquillo said. “His wife was indicted for embezzling money and he was subsequently investigated. Kuhn faced minor felony charges relating to his taxes and was not forced out of office. Once his criminal case was closed, we requested all of the investigative records from the prosecutor’s office.”
The challenges: Time, other stories to cover, getting the documents and getting people in a small community to go on the record.
“We thought we’d have at least another week before the first print date, but a large metro paper had broken the story about Kuhn’s gambling the Sunday before ours was set to print. This development changed everything. We hunkered down in a room all week, finishing up interviews and cranking out stories as fast as we could write them to hit the daily deadlines for stories that could have taken us a couple days to write and perfect.”
How they did it: Remoquillo and breaking news reporter Trista Thurston divided the work and used color-coded Post-its to help them find the documents they
Read more here: https://www.poynter.org/news/how-can-small-newsrooms-do-big-work-part-2