A Tacoma City Council meeting agenda from April 24, 2018 (upper left) shows how the city informs the public about legal settlements. The parties and the dollar amounts are listed prior to the council’s vote. A Pierce County Council meeting agenda from Nov. 14, 2017, shows a different approach. No amounts or parties are listed. The claim refers to “settlement authority” without specifics. The county claim was settled on Nov. 17, 2017, for $680,000 -- a figure the public never saw.
A Tacoma City Council meeting agenda from April 24, 2018 (upper left) shows how the city informs the public about legal settlements. The parties and the dollar amounts are listed prior to the council’s vote. A Pierce County Council meeting agenda from Nov. 14, 2017, shows a different approach. No amounts or parties are listed. The claim refers to “settlement authority” without specifics. The county claim was settled on Nov. 17, 2017, for $680,000 -- a figure the public never saw. Joshua Bessex jbessex@gateline.com
A Tacoma City Council meeting agenda from April 24, 2018 (upper left) shows how the city informs the public about legal settlements. The parties and the dollar amounts are listed prior to the council’s vote. A Pierce County Council meeting agenda from Nov. 14, 2017, shows a different approach. No amounts or parties are listed. The claim refers to “settlement authority” without specifics. The county claim was settled on Nov. 17, 2017, for $680,000 -- a figure the public never saw. Joshua Bessex jbessex@gateline.com

News Tribune investigative reporter Sean Robinson won the 2016 Ted Natt First Amendment award for ongoing scrutiny of the Pierce County Prosecutor’s office. Since 2000, he has produced award-winning coverage related to criminal justice, government accountability and public disclosure.

Support my work with a digital subscription