The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was created recently to provide more transparency in government, but it is being secretive about its overly generous salaries.
According to FOIAs requested by Judicial Watch, the public interest organization that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, the CFPB is hiring at salaries twice the maximum ordinarily allowed by the Office of Personnel Management.
The CFPB responded to the FOIA requests on Sept. 12, but it omitted a majority of the information on the 26 forms provided. The documents do show that the bureau has already instituted a cash award bonus system. During the first six months of 2011, the agency dished out up to $500 in bonuses to employees making $225,000 or more annually.
Judicial Watch also sent FOIAs to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
Like the CFPB, the CFTC also blocked out most of the information requested but did reveal that it provided similar cash bonuses to its employees making $225,000 each year.
"These new salary records are bound to cause controversy,” Tom Fitton, the president of Judicial Watch, said. “No wonder Washington D.C. is the wealthiest area of the country. And the secrecy surrounding basic salary information of public employees shows an arrogance of power and contempt for transparency in an administration that promised the very opposite."
According to Judicial Watch, the Federal Reserve denied its request for salary information despite a legal obligation.
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Treasury Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission also submitted incomplete answers to the FOIA requests. Each of the agencies, however, revealed sustainable salaries for a large portion of workers.