West Valley City, Ut., Mayor Mike Winder has admitted writing articles about his own city for the Deseret News and other media outlets under a pen name without the paper's knowledge, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. Winder said four articles he submitted this year under the name Richard Burwash were published in either the Deseret News or on KSL.com. The mayor said he was frustrated that the newspaper had drastically reduced its city government coverage after layoffs last year but not its crime coverage and wanted to “try to restore balance.”
“I care deeply about having news stories about my community beyond what the crime desk churns out, since there is a negative reputation we are working hard to turn around,” Winder told the Tribune. “In a three-month period, 16 percent of Salt Lake Tribune stories that mentioned West Valley City were about crime, but 56 percent of Deseret News stories about my city were about crime.” The articles were submitted through Deseret Connect, a venue for freelance writers to contribute to the Deseret News, KSL, Mormon Times and LDS Church News.