The Sacramento Bee will be recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists when the northern California chapter honors champions of open government and the First Amendment.
The newspaper is among individuals, news and non-profit organizations receiving an award at the 28th annual James Madison Awards banquet on March 12.
The Bee will be honored for uncovering $54 million in secret assets in the state parks system. According to the SPJ:
"Longtime sources and public record requests were key to discovering the hidden assets. The stories by the Bee's Matt Weiser, Kevin Yamamura and Jon Ortiz resulted in resignations, firings and criminal investigations, with the Attorney General's Office concluding that state park leaders had hidden the assets deliberately.
In the wake of the revelations, Governor Jerry Brown has authorized $20 million of the newfound money to go to park repairs. The Bee has continued to follow the scandal and has examined similar budget issues at other departments."