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Sunshine Applies to California Salaries

Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2010

Ever wonder how much your city librarian is paid?  How about the city manager or police chief? What does an auto mechanic earn?

Traditionally local government salaries have been hard to find. Usually the search meant pouring over the city or county budget to see the line item denoting salaries.

No more. California State Controller John Chiang has just posted the most comprehensive salary data in the state's history.

Upon viewing the Local Government Compensation Reports Web site, you will be able to find salary information for calendar year 2009 for all the cities and counties in California. Those who have not yet submitted the data are also highlighted.

The process begain in August 2010 when Chiang announced he was requiring the reports to show not only salaries but public employees' compensation. The move has gained attention in the wake of news reports on exhorbitant salaries and pensions of some administrators and councilmembers in Bell, California.

The report is easy to navigate, comprehensive in detail, and appears to be a good model for other states.

Tags: transparency

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