by Rosemary and Walter Brasch
WNEP-TV, a large regional station in northeastern Pennsylvania, led its noon news, Friday, Sept. 11, with the announcement that there was finally a compromise on the state budget.
The legislators have been playing politics, stalling, and delaying for more than two months, leaving Pennsylvania the only state without a budget. To the viewer, it seemed that the executive branch and the legislative branch finally figured out that the people's money needed to be budgeted and used. This would have been great news--except that in the same story, we also learned there were still some details to be worked out.
By the evening news, Gov. Ed Rendell said there was still much to be done and there was no solution, and it may still be weeks before he could sign an acceptable budget. The breathless "breaking news at noon" was just another instance of not verifying information before putting it on the air.