U Memo 11-3

Posted on Sep 15, 2010 in Informal Opinions - UIPA Opinions

U Memo 11-3
September 15, 2010
Disclosure of Employee Names, Titles and Salaries

Corporation Counsel asked OIP whether the City and County of Honolulu must disclose the names of all city employees in conjunction with each employee’s respective title and salary or salary range in response to a request made under the UIPA.

OIP found that the UIPA requires the City to disclose the name, title and salary (or salary range for covered employees) for all City employees, except present or former law enforcement personnel. The City raised a variety of privacy and frustration concerns over the requested disclosure. Although there may be legitimate arguments that identifiable salary information is the type of information that would usually fall under the UIPA’s privacy and frustration exceptions, OIP was constrained to find that those arguments could not be considered because of the statutory requirement that this information be disclosed under § 92F-12 without consideration of the exceptions to disclosure under HRS § 92F-13, but must instead be addressed to the Legislature.

The City also asked what authority requires the City to create a roster of its employees given the statement in HRS § 92F-12(a)(14) that it does not require the creation of a roster of employees. If the City does not maintain a “roster” or “rosters,” then one need not be created in order to respond to the request made. However, HRS § 92F-11(c) requires an agency to compile a specific list of information requested if it is “readily retrievable.” See OIP Op. Ltr. No. 90-35.

Lastly, the City sought guidance regarding disclosure of the identities of certain law enforcement personnel in light of the exception provided in HRS § 92F-12(a)(14), for “present or former employees involved in an undercover capacity in a law enforcement agency.” Specifically, the City has asked for guidance concerning law enforcement employees who are not currently performing undercover activities but may be involved in undercover activities in the future.

OIP found that a plain and narrow reading of the exception for “present or former employees involved in an undercover capacity” limits withholding to those law enforcement employees that are, or were, engaged in an undercover law enforcement capacity. Without more specific factual justification, OIP did not read this language to include law enforcement employees who could potentially receive an undercover assignment at some future date.