Archive for December, 2000

Press-Enterprise sues public hospital district for employee salary information

December 29, 2000

The Press-Enterprise filed suit against a Hemet-based public hospital district and its management services company, Valley Health Care Management Services, to obtain, under the California Public Records Act, a list of Valley Health Care Services’ employees and their salaries. Given the financial collapse of Dr. Kali Chaudhuri’s KPC Medical Management, which resulted in the closure of 38 clinics, the sought-after information would help the public access the district’s performance, actions, conduct and expenditures. The district’s lawyers argued that the list is not a matter of public record because Valley Health Care Management Services is a private corporation. Furthermore, the California Health and Safety Code exempts financial information from disclosure. The lawyers representing the newspaper are relying on case law that requires private companies contracting with a public agency to release financial information related to the agency’s decision-making process.