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Contracts becoming more common but boards scrutinize compensation

Members reacting to cutbacks in their own benefits, experts say at CEO Update event

June 13, 2014
By William Ehart

The good news for association CEOs is that more boards accept that executive contracts are common practice; less favorable is that board members increasingly view Washington, D.C.-area salaries and benefits as excessive.

Those are but two insights provided to a full house of top association executives by an expert panel at the CEO Update Live: Personal Financial Strategies event June 5 at SunTrust Bank’s Washington headquarters.

“Boards of directors are almost shocked at the level of benefits they see Washington, D.C., employees getting, because they are not,” said Charlie Quatt, president and founder of compensation consultant Quatt Associates.

“Boards are only getting 3 percent 401(k) matches, if they are lucky. They are shocked to see that the D.C. median is 6 percent to 7 percent, and many trades are going up to 10 percent or 11 percent,” he said.

“Industry itself is slashing benefits,” Quatt said.