Louisiana Parish government payroll request (Finance Department)

Michael Walker filed this request with the Finance Department of Caddo Parish, LA.


From: Michael Morisy

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to Louisiana Public Records Act, I hereby request the following records:

2011 and 2012 payroll records for all employees paid in this parish Parish.

For each employee, we'd like to receive the following information:

Unique ID
Regular Wages
Overtime Pay
Other Pay
Total Compensation

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at louisianasunshine.org, processed by a representative of the Pelican Institute and is not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not. If these records exist in electronic format, I request that those electronic records be provided (not, for instance, that those electronic records be printed then digitized to create images of the printouts).

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 3 business days, as the statute requires.

Michael Walker
Visible Government Online

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on March 8, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Barnett, Hayley

Per our attorneys, the public records law does not require us to provide the employee name or a unique id for this information.

From: Michael Walker

We only use the unique ID for comparing salaries over time but we can get along without it.

I'm curious about your attorney's advice about the employee name. We've sent FOI requests to the state, New Orleans, and 12 other parishes, and not one of them balked at providing the employee name. It's the essence of transparency, true all over the country. Employees may not like it but that's the price of working in the public sector.

Please ask the attorney to visit: www.louisianasunshine.org/payroll. We already have the names of 92,000 Louisiana government employees listed on this Open Government website.

Bottom line: On the advice of your attorney, are you refusing to provide employee names with the payroll data?

From: Barnett, Hayley

Please see attached.

From: Michael Walker


The documents you provided are exactly the information we requested. Thank you for your help.

One final question/request then I'll get out of your hair.

Can your payroll system export the data as a spreadsheet? If so, can you send us a file with these column headings:

Employee number
Employee name
Regular Earnings - Gross
Overtime - Gross
Total Earnings - Gross
Total Benefits - Amount

Again, thank you for your help.