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Virginia: How Much Info On State Employees Should Be Public?

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The members agree the public has a right to know how tax dollars are being spent, but they're not sure how much information is appropriate.

State law permits disclosure of public employees' salaries above a $10,000 threshold. But Sen. Steve Martin said when the Richmond Times-Dispatch published the names, positions, and salaries of state workers who earn more than an average wage, constituents complained.

"I certainly want the public to have that access," Martin says. "What I don't like is the idea that the janitor goes to choir practice one night, and because of the article that was published that morning, all of his choir members know exactly what he makes."

Martin had proposed a bill to allow disclosure of all information except names, but later said increasing the threshold might work. Council member Roger Wiley said that has not been adjusted in 40 years.

The council is soliciting public input.

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