A five-part series taking readers inside America’s most dangerous penal system earned The Marshall Project and Mississippi Today the 2021 Collier Prize for State Government Accountability. The 2020 series, “Mississippi Penal System, Uncovered,” chronicled the violence in Mississippi prisons where neither inmates nor guards are safe, financial improprieties with the private company running Mississippi prisons, and the continued existence of debtors’ prisons.
A story by cleveland.com on the vast network of influence that utility company FirstEnergy had on lawmakers throughout the state, was named runner-up.
A four-part series telling the story of how corporate cash corrupted one of the greenest states in America earned The Oregonian the first Collier Prize for State Government Accountability. The February 2019 series, “Polluted by Money,” identified specific problems in Oregon: Campaign contributions with no limits, loose rules on how campaign contributions can be spent by recipient politicians, and a weak oversight regime by a regulatory agency with no teeth.
Runners up included a joint project between the Center for Public Integrity and the USA Today Network for “Copy, Paste, Legislate,”and the Philadelphia Inquirer for their series, “Beaten, then Silenced.”
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