I’ve said this numerous times: New York state residents are blessed to have an organization like the Empire Center for Public Policy working on their side, particularly when it comes to its tireless efforts to push for government transparency and for the volumes of public information it makes easily available on its website.
It’s a basic principle, finally being affirmed after years of flagrant disrespect: Because public pensions are paid by the public, all of us have a right to know who is getting how much.
This new timeline traces five legal battles the Empire Center has fought since 2009 against public agencies that refuse to allow taxpayers to see where their money is going.
Maximum pension benefits averaged $68,676 for the 2,495 members of the New York State Teachers Retirement System (NYSTRS) who retired in school year 2016-17 with at least 30 years of credited service time, according to data posted today on SeeThroughNY, the Empire Center’s transparency website.
Following several ignored Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) requests for its teacher and superintendent contracts, the Empire Center for Public Policy today will file a lawsuit against Malverne Union Free School District in Nassau County on Long Island.
New city payroll data the Empire Center for Public Policy compiled shows the city’s total pay to school workers increased to $10.73 billion for the 2016-17 school year. That’s up from $10.18 billion the year before.
Twenty-three percent of public school teachers and administrators in New York school districts outside New York City were paid more than $100,000 during the 2016-17 school year, according to data added today to SeeThroughNY, the Empire Center’s transparency website.
“We’ve said this since the beginning: Taxpayers have a right to know where their tax dollars go,” Hoefer said, noting that payrolls generally are the largest share of government costs.
Past records on the Empire Center’s database show that the Middletown public works commmissioner’s pay was $141,308 in 2010 and has leaped several times, rising 30 percent since 2014. Tawil’s contract grants him five weeks of vacation per year and lets him save and get paid for all unused vacation days, which contributed significantly to his $260,000 pay in the past year.