Compensation Issues

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CEO of Nashville General gets pay cut as city reviews his contract

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The compensation and benefits package of Nashville General CEO Joseph Webb has been reduced in advance of contract negotiations after his increasing salary raised questions, the Tennessean reported Oct. 20.

Hospital board members admitted that they had been confused about Mr. Webb's current salary and had misunderstood a major component of his contract, according to the newspaper. His contract was set to expire earlier this year but has been extended month to month as board members put together a replacement deal, the newspaper said. 

A draft of the contract that increased Mr. Webb's retirement benefits and compounded raises, making his potential annual compensation $940,000 over the next three years raised questions from the mayor's office. The board has given Mr. Webb the maximum allowable incentive raises for the last two years. 

Nashville Mayor John Cooper instructed his staff to run an independent review of the proposed contract last month. The city finance director sent the board a letter explaining that the pay for the safety-net hospital CEO was disproportionate to the pay at similar Nashville agencies.

The hospital board has since reduced the benefits in the contract. It now offers 5 percent incentive raises that aren't compounded annually. Deferred compensation has been reduced from 45 percent of the proposed salary to 30 percent. 

The proposed contract will be considered by the full board on Oct. 28.

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