Hood, Entergy disagree over executive bonuses

In addition to celebrating a Friday decision by the Louisiana Supreme Court, Entergy Corp. defended its executive compensation system Monday after Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood criticized it in a press release.

Hood’s release stated that Entergy CEO J. Wayne Leonard has collected $54.6 million in salary and other compensation during the past three years while the company made $13 billion in 2008. Hood filed a lawsuit against the company in December that alleged it is overcharging its Mississippi customers.

In his release, Hood said, “The average Mississippian cannot even comprehend a $54 million payday, let alone ever see a fraction of that kind of money in a lifetime.”

Entergy spokesperson Mara Hartmann told Legal Newsline the company’s executive compensation system is largely performance-based.

“Entergy’s executive compensation program is designed to reward superior performance,” she said. “The packages are meant to recruit, retain, motivate and reward leaders who can contribute to the long-term success of the company and thereby build value for our shareholders.

“If all performance goals are met, 65 to 80 percent of executive pay is tied to performance. It is 80 percent for CEO and 65 percent for other executives. The remaining percentage is base salary.”

Legal Newsline