The Nerve received three South Carolina Press Association awards at the association’s annual awards meeting Saturday in Folly Beach.
The Nerve won two first-place awards in the “Best Published News Story” category in the Associate Member Division for the following stories:
- “Millions Spent by S.C. Municipalities on Federal Lobbyists,” published Aug. 17, 2011, revealed that since 2003, 21 counties and local municipalities in the state had spent about $5.5 million on federal lobbyists – much of it since the start of the Great Recession. The story was based on a review of federal lobbying records; and
- “Sex Offenders Receive Big Bills from State Mental Health Agency,” published Nov. 3, 2011, revealed that indigent sex offenders in a court-ordered treatment program run by the S.C. Department of Mental Health were receiving six-figure bills for their stay in the program. The story was based on a review of department bills obtained by The Nerve.
Both stories were written by investigative reporter Rick Brundrett.
The Nerve also won a third-place award in the “Best Published News Story” category for a Nov. 10, 2010, story, “Amid Recession, S.C. Senate Staff Gets Pay Raise.” The story, written by investigative reporter Eric K. Ward, revealed that a nearly $5 million budget increase last fiscal year for the S.C. Senate was used in part to cover pay raises for Senate staffers, despite chamber leaders’ claims the money was needed for other pressing concerns.
Since its launch in January 2010, The Nerve has received six Press Association awards. The Nerve is a product of the South Carolina Policy Council, which is an associate member of the Press Association.