Report: Mary Easley's salary at North Carolina State was too high

State Auditor Beth Wood today released a January audit that stated that the salary N.C. State University paid to then First Lady Mary Easley was excessive and should have been reduced by nearly $90,000.

But Wood, in a follow-up "interim report" said the January audit was incomplete and that more investigation was needed. She noted that NCSU had provided additional information to justify the $170,000 salary. The January audit recommended that the salary be reduced to $79,000 and that Easley's five-year contract should be replaced by a two-year contract.

The salary and how Mary Easley won the job have become part of wide-ranging state and federal investigations into perks given to former Gov. Mike Easley and his family.

Read the Raleigh News & Observer series on former Governor Mark Easley at