After initial discussions in February, the Colorado Springs City Council will consider a revised proposal for a reduced pay adjustment phased in over three years for Colorado Springs Utilities CEO Jerry Forte. A decision will be made at the April 8 Council meeting. A raise would eliminate the CEO’s performance incentive and increase the base salary. The CSU personnel committee proposed total compensation to increase by 8.8 percent in 2014, 9.3 percent in 2015 and 8.5 percent in 2016.
“We listened to customers who were not comfortable with the size of the original proposed pay adjustment,” said City Councilwoman Jan Martin.
In alignment with board compensation policy, the goal is to pay employees at the market 50th percentile, or median. An executive compensation study showed Forte’s total compensation as 44 percent below the market median. Median total compensation is $622,071, compared to Forte’s total compensation of $346,906. His pay has not increased in seven years.
After the phased-in change over three years, total compensation would be $447,175 — 28 percent below the market median.
“It’s important to make the CEO’s pay more competitive with similar utilities,” Martin said. “Retaining and attracting qualified leadership is critical to maintaining the reliable service, reasonable rates and excellent customer service that our customers have come to expect. A top 10 percent ranking in customer satisfaction in the United States by J.D. Power and Associates doesn’t happen without strong utilities leadership.”
Additional details of the proposal can be found at: www.springsgov.com/Agendas.aspx?AMID=1595. Click on “View Live & Archived Meetings.”