Sunday, February 15, 2009

Dodd slips exec pay limits into final bill

The "spendulus" bill that Barack Obama will sign on Tuesday includes language capping executive pay at banks who receive bailout money.
Sen. Christopher Dodd, chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, inserted strict rules into the $787 billion economic stimulus package over the White House's objections. Dodd's limits on bankers' bonuses are significantly more aggressive than those sought by Obama or Geithner in recent days, with much fanfare.

Dodd, D-Conn., said the restrictions — an executive making $1 million a year in salary could receive only $500,000 in bonus money, for example — are necessary if Obama plans to ask Congress for more money to save the financial sector.
I don't like the government mucking about in anyway with executive compensation in private industry, but the legislation still could have been worse and more far-reaching. This also might have the effect of keeping banks from requesting bailout money unless they're truly in dire straits.

Now, how about some legislation requiring detailed accounting of the use of bailout money? Unless something's changed, I don't think anything like that is in place yet.

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