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North Carolina bill directs governments to release more personnel info

North Carolina state agencies, local governments and school boards would be required to release reasons why employees got fired or demoted in legislation filed on Thursday in the state Senate.

The measure,  backed by the North Carolina Press Association, would expand the information that government employers would have to disclose to the media or citizens in response to personnel records requests.

State law already makes some information in personnel records public, including a worker’s name, age, current salary, salary increases and the “general description of the reasons for each promotion.”

The bill, filed by four Republican senators, would now require a similar general description for the reasons for demotions, dismissals, transfers or suspensions.

John Bussian, an attorney representing the N.C. Press Association, said recently the measure is a “real transparency bill” that would give “the public the right to see records on the performance of government employees at all levels.”

The personnel records measure also would apply to community colleges and regional agencies that manage patients who receive mental and substance abuse treatment.

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