The BGA’s expansion into Springfield and downstate Illinois is making excellent progress on the investigative, policy and community outreach fronts.

Here’s an update:

Investigations. BGA has named top investigative producer/reporter Patrick McCraney to the investigations team. McCraney comes from FOX 32 News in Chicago and prior to that assignment was an investigative producer in Milwaukee and a reporter in downstate Illinois, where he covered the statehouse in Springfield. Already, Pat has contributed to a major investigative report produced by BGA media partner State Journal-Register and its affiliated newspapers and websites. Read our latest story…

Policy. The BGA policy team is advancing the organization’s expansion. It recently hosted a reception for state lawmakers, community leaders and media partners. In addition, the BGA has charted an aggressive legislative agenda for this current General Assembly session. Meanwhile, the BGA Alper Services Integrity Index, a national report and survey, is close to completion.

Civic Outreach. BGA staffers are building relationships with key Springfield constituencies. In addition to the SPJ, the investigative team is teaming up with local TV stations (WICS/Ch20 and Champaign-based WCIA/Ch3). In addition, the BGA is seeking feedback from major downstate civic leaders. They include members of the Citizens Efficiency Commission of Sangamon County and former Springfield Mayor Karen Hasara.

These are only a few examples of the BGA’s Springfield mission. Look for more to come!