State Integrity Investigation: How vulnerable to corruption are DE, NJ & PA?
March 19, 2012
A months-long investigation into how state governments are doing in providing transparency and accountability and staving off corruption is unveiled today, and the results are troubling. The State Integrity Investigation – a collaboration of the Center for Public Integrity, Public Radio International and Global Integrity – paints a picture of statehouses ripe for corruption and self-dealing. Instead of just ripping from the headlines surrounding scandals, the State Integrity Index measures the risk of corruption. Attention-grabbing scandals often prompt states to adopt tough laws and enforcement meant to catch and prevent corruption, while those states where one rarely hears about corruption may have few laws or enforcers able to address it. For instance, famously-corrupt New Jersey earned the top overall rank, a “B+,” precisely because those well-publicized scandals have prompted legislative reform, but Pennsylvania and Delaware earned grades of “C-.” Joining guest host TRACEY MATISAK for this hour of Radio Times are three Delaware Valley journalists who conducted the investigation: CRIS BARRISH, senior reporter for The News Journal of Delaware; COLLEEN O’DEA, an editor-at-large for NJ Spotlight and longtime investigative reporter for the Daily Record of Morris County, New Jersey; and PETER DURANTINE, editor of TheBurg, Harrisburg’s monthly community newspaper, who covered the Pennsylvania capital for 15 years for the Associated Press, Philadelphia Daily News and the York Daily Record.