Help us help you
The community needs to have skilled watchdog journalists on duty to sniff out wrongdoing and expose it in the public interest. The community needs journalists who will hold public officials accountable and speak truth to power. That’s the mission of The Austin Bulldog. We are funded entirely by readers like you and foundations that choose to invest in high-quality journalism that serves the public interest. That allows us to provide the strongest possible independent reporting. But we need your help to sustain The Austin Bulldog’s work. Your contributions, large or small, make all the difference.
Please support this important by making a contribution right now. You can sign up to make a one-time contribution or become a sustaining supporter with ongoing monthly contributions. Whatever amount you contribute, you can be sure it’s making a difference in helping to hold the powers that be accountable.
The Austin Bulldog launched on April 1, 2010, as an experiment to see if a small nonprofit 501(c)(3) for investigative journalism in the public interest could make a difference.
We now have two and a half years of hard-edged aggressive reporting behind us and the verdict is in: The Austin Bulldog has consistently produced high-impact accountability journalism—and did so with a minimum of resources. We break the stories that have an impact, and other media can only follow. For example:
• Our investigative report about the Austin City Council's possible violation of the Open Meetings Act, published January 25, 2011, led to immediate action to cease illegal meetings. That report and a citizen’s criminal complaint also prompted a 21-month investigation by the Travis County Attorney. That investigation resulted in the mayor and five council members signing deferred prosecution agreements that waived the statute of limitations on evidence the county attorney collected. The agreements also required the City of Austin to institute major reforms to comply with open government laws. (See story published October 24, 2012.)
• Our open records requests exposed embarrassing and possibly illegal e-mail exchanges engaged in by some Austin City Council members.
• Our reporting and lawsuits filed against the City of Austin over its violations of the Texas Public Information Act forced the Austin City Council to reform its own procedures for electronic communications, to order the city manager to do the same for the city’s 12,000 employees, and to order the city clerk to do the same for the approximately 375 members of the city’s 55 boards and commissions. Legal experts say these reforms can serve as a template for governmental bodies throughout Texas.
• These groundbreaking stories have been followed by mainstream media including the Austin American-Statesman, television stations, and public radio, underlining The Austin Bulldog’s importance as a vital public service.
Every time we publish an investigative report we get a flurry of tips for investigations that our readers would like us to pursue. We eagerly read those requests and promptly respond to each and every one.
But our resources are extremely limited. How limited? Check out our statement of annual expenses for calendar year 2010 here. For calendar year 2011, click here.
We need community support to sustain this important work.
Nobody else is going to do the investigative reporting we are doing. If you want to see this vital work continue, now is the time to add your name to the growing list of community supporters.
Please make your tax-deductible contribution now.
The Austin Bulldog is an initiative of the Austin Investigative Reporting Project, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. This means your contributions will be tax-deductible. Our sole purpose is to publish investigative reporting in the public interest.