It took several months of pressure by the public and the press, but the Marin County Supervisors in March dropped a policy that kept secret the salaries of most county government employees. But now a union representing some of those employees has convinced Marin Superior Court Judge Vernon Smith to impose a temporary restraining order to block the release of those salaries until a June 29 hearing, according to the Marin Independent Journal. The question is whether the employees had an expectation of privacy. “The union says the data was never disclosed, the IJ says routinely and the county of Marin says occasionally — we need a full evidentiary hearing and discovery to determine the true facts,” said Donald Ramsey, attorney for the Marin County Management Employees Association, a union representing about 300 county middle managers. The privacy question came up last year when the Contra Costa Times sued the city of Oakland after it refused to release the names and salaries of workers who make over $100,000 a year. The CCTimes won at trial, and appeals court upheld the verdict, and now the case is before the state Supreme Court.

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