DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – The Detroit Institute of Arts could be changing the way it doles out bonuses to its top executives.
The Detroit News reports that DIA board chairman Eugene Gargaro vowed that the museum would not give further bonuses to director Graham Beal nor chief executive officer Annmarie Erickson — unless the money is approved by three county art authorities or paid from non-taxpayer funds.
Gargaro said the move is part of the museum’s efforts to be more transparent in how their funds are being managed, including when it comes to executive compensation.
The change comes weeks after newspaper uncovered that Beal and Graham each received $50,000 bonuses as well as double-digit pay increases in 2012 — Beal’s salary increased 13 percent to $514,000; Erickson’s increased 36 percent to $369,000.
The increases came the same year voters in neighboring counties approved a yearly $23 million property tax millage to fund DIA operations for 10 years.
It was the second year in a row that Beal received a base salary raise, and the third consecutive raise for Erickson. Beal’s compensation has risen 20 percent since 2010, according to the documents, while Erickson’s has jumped 56 percent.
At the time, Gargaro said the compensation was based in part on personnel evaluations and the DIA’s financial performance.
“When we were in dire straits, many times we gave Beal and Erickson credit for the work they’ve done to get us through these unique financial times,” Gargaro told the newspaper. “Yes, it’s a significant amount of money. That’s what it takes to attract and retain top talent in our community.”
Some creditors pushed for city-owned artwork in the museum’s collection to be sold in Detroit’s historic bankruptcy.
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