chris-sourovelis-house-cropped

Philly family lost house over $40 drug purchase

By  |  August 27, 2014  |  No Comments

In March, Chris Sourovelis’ son was caught selling $40 of heroine to an undercover police officer.

REVERSE ORDER: An FBI worker's case involving a District of Columbia traffic accident flirted with federal court before heading back through usual channels.

Feds roll FBI fender bender back to DC court

Virginia  |  August 27, 2014

Three days after Watchdog.org reported an FBI employee’s traffic ticket was headed to federal court, the U.S. Department of Justice made a legal U-turn.

Creative Commons photo

Stifling free speech? California looks to ban Confederate flag

Virginia  |  August 27, 2014

California is looking to bar the “Stars and Bars.”

A bill sits on Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk to ban California from displaying or selling the Confederate flag or objects with images of it. The state’s Legislature passed the bill nearly unanimously last week.

Courtesy of U.S. Army

Feds subsidize Florida law enforcement’s military equipment stockpile

Florida  |  August 27, 2014

M-16 assault rifles, reconnaissance helicopters and electric golf carts. For pennies on the dollar, local law enforcement agencies in Florida have been stocking up on surplus military equipment for years.

Photo illustration by Steve Wilson

Mississippi taxpayers owe $10,700 apiece for mounting debt

Mississippi  |  August 27, 2014

Can anyone spare an extra $10,700 for each Mississippi taxpayer?

AP file photo

Meet the radical revolutionary running for U.S. Senate in Montana

Montana  |  August 26, 2014

Montana Democrats needed a savior to help them score an unlikely victory for one of the state’s U.S. Senate seats.

Creative Commons photo

Not-such-chump change: Alabama’s debt equates to $14,000 per resident

Alabama  |  August 26, 2014

By Johnny Kampis | Watchdog.org
CULLMAN, Ala. — Got $14,000 in your couch cushions? Then you’ll be able to pay your share of Alabama’s debt.
Truth in Accounting, a Chicago-based fiscal government watchdog, recently released its annual Financial State of the States report examining each state’s finances.
The figures aren’t pretty.
The numbers of this study are always more eye-popping [...]

Photo courtesy of the Internal Revenue Service's official Facebook page

IRS screwing up Obamacare tax collection, audit shows

Tennessee  |  August 26, 2014

By Chris Butler | Tennessee Watchdog
NASHVILLE — Internal Revenue Service officials must enforce a new Obamacare tax designed to collect money from medical device manufacturers, but they’re losing money because they don’t know which companies even qualify for the tax, a new audit shows.
On top of that, the IRS wrongly penalized more than 200 of these companies [...]

SMALL TOWN, BIG GUNS: The city of Franklin, Virginia, is home to about 8,000 people, farms, and a mine-resistant vehicle. / Photo by Franklin City Association during Christmas Open House, 2009.

Welcome to Franklin, Va., population 8,638 — and one mine-resistant vehicle

Virginia  |  August 26, 2014

Not too far from the Hampton Roads region and the North Carolina border, the quiet, 8.75-square mile city of Franklin, Va., is home to farmlands, 8,582 people — and one military-grade, mine-resistant vehicle.

LOOK OUT ABOVE:  For about $1 million, the MN Vikings new stadium could be far less lethal to migratory birds in the Mississippi River flyway.

Bird-friendly glass won’t fly on billion dollar NFL stadium

Minnesota  |  August 26, 2014

Minnesota Vikings bird-loving fans are flustered the NFL franchise won’t ante up a million bucks for bird-safe glass at the stadium now under construction.

“Blatant refusal to replace the glass because birds will die crashing into the windows has now convinced me this project is an embarrassment and horror to our Flyway and to our State. Conceit and greed is now painfully obvious and everyone involved should be ashamed,” wrote Mary Madeco-Smith on City Pages website.

Critics flocked to post online comments on news sites following reports that $46 million in newly announced stadium upgrades will not include $1.1 million for bird-friendly glass.

US 100 dollar bill final

Your $100 goes further in Ohio

Ohio  |  August 26, 2014

Your $100 goes further in Ohio than in 42 other states, according to a new map from the Tax Foundation.

SPECIAL REPORT

VIDEOS

PLAIN ENGLISH: While Gov. Sam Brownback has been characterized as uncaring in his opposition to Obamacare, the governor says it's a simple matter of fiscal prudence for those who realize the federal government doesn't always keep its promises.

Video: Brownback states plainly why Medicaid expansion hurts Kansas

By  |  No Comments

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has been on the business end of numerous barbs and critiques for taking a stand against Obamacare and Medicaid expansion in the Sunflower State.

Those with unwavering faith in the federal government have characterized the conservative governor as an uncaring obstructionist for his opposition, but in an exclusive interview with the Daily Signal, Brownback laid out the argument against Obamacare in his own words.

little free library

Leawood throws the book at Little Free Library

By  |  No Comments

The city of Leawood is using the full power of the law to protect property values from the threat of, uh, free cabinet-sized libraries.

A municipal statute designed to ban all detached structures is being levied against Leawood residents Brian and Sarah Collins after their 9-year-old son, Spencer, worked with his dad and grandpa to build the Little Free Library as a Mother’s Day gift.

WATCHDOG CITIZEN NEWS

 |  New Jersey  |  1:16 pm

By L. Tierney | WatchdogWire.com
Those New Jersey homeowners who were concerned about granting government easements for beach replenishment? Turns out they were right to be suspicious.
Two bills pending in the state Senate could mean big changes for Long Beach Island.
Senate bill S-2368, filed last session, requires any municipality that accepts federal or state money to replenish storm-damaged beaches [...]

Free beaches come at high cost

 |  Washington  |  1:15 pm

Based on Washington State’s track record with the new ESA listing of the well-endowed pocket gopher, it appears they protect rodents better than citizens.

Washington state protects gophers better than cops, citizens

 |  Georgia  |  1:08 pm

Jasper County, Ga. is one of the recipients of the more than $5.1 billion worth of military equipment given to local law enforcement.

Georgia county arms to the hilt

 |  Connecticut

Connecticut mom Tanya McDowell will spend 12 years in prison after she was sentenced on a number of criminal charges, including “stealing” nearly $15,000 in “educational services” for her son.

Mother sentenced to 12 years for ‘stealing’ son’s education

 |  Nevada

A Bloomberg-backed group is back with a petition drive to revive a background check initiative for Nevada’s 2016 ballot.

Bloomberg takes another shot at Nevadans’ guns

 |  North Carolina

Families like the Currans that have critical needs are feeling the brunt of higher deductibles, out-of-pocket expenses, co-pays and premiums from ObamaCare.

ObamaCare pushes children with critical needs to the edge

 |  Colorado

By Jackie Moreau | WatchdogWire.com
Colorado’s most recent legislative session was one of “unexpectations.”
Gov. Hickenlooper unexpectedly vetoed a finance-reform bill that kept unexpected fundraisers satisfied, Watchdog Wire’s  Joshua Sharf reports.
House Bill14-1375, which passed with bipartisan support, targeted Tax Increment Financing and developers who have been able to subvert costs of development projects from its revenue. TIF [...]

Hickenlooper’s veto may benefit unexpected fundraisers

 |  Washington

 
By Melissa Genson | WatchdogWire.com
Does size really matter? According to the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife and U.S. Fish and Wildlife, it sure does.
The odd claims of state and federal officials have been enough to earn a small group of this incredibly prolific and destructive rodent an Endangered Species Act listing, based on a 36-year-old loophole in the [...]

Gopher wins ESA listing based on genitalia size