The Burbank Leader collected three first-place and two second-place awards in its weekly newspaper category on Saturday in the California Newspaper Publishers Assn.'s annual Better Newspaper Contest. The awards, presented in San Jose during a meeting of the nonprofit trade association, were among 16 collected on behalf of Times Community North by Editor Dan Evans.
The paper earned a first-place award for its coverage of local government with articles written by former staff writer Gretchen Meier. Her reporting put the spotlight on bonuses paid to city employees at a time of tight budget constraints, and the refusal of the city to hand over documents related to those bonuses.
Meier's work on the Burbank city bonus issue was also awarded the top prize under the First Amendment/Freedom of Information Act category.