April 7, 2005
Securities and Exchange Commission
Dear Securities and Exchange Commission,
I am writing to urge the Securities and Exchange Commission to act on its proposed rule making on executive compensation disclosure. Too often executives are richly rewarded even when their companies' performance is below par. Without better disclosure, shareholders, employees and the general public cannot evaluate whether executive pay packages are unjustly enriching executives at shareholder cost or providing fair compensation.
The newly proposed rules will make this crucial information more accessible to shareholders and the public. The new requirements to disclose total compensation figures, pensions and detailed compensation breakdowns will make it clear exactly how much top executives are earning and why.
I believe that CEO pay should be set by independent directors. Under the proposed rule, a director could secretly do $120,000 in business with a company, an amount that is more than four times the average worker's annual pay of $27,460. Shareholders should be told if directors have potential conflicts of interest, no matter what the amount.
I also urge the SEC to require that companies disclose pay-for-performance data. In order for investors to understand how pay and performance match up, companies need to explain more clearly what level of performance is necessary for a particular level of pay. I urge the SEC to require companies to disclose both the performance criteria and the performance targets they use when setting executive pay.
I think it is disgraceful how many CEOs are making horrendously huge salaries and getting retirement packages that leave them rich for life while the workers are falling further and further behind and our retirement packages are a sham. We do not get an healthcare and I have paid enough premiums and co pays plus my own prescriptions in my lifetime to start a business. Most workers end up in the same boat; barely above the poverty line or worse yet companies which continue to pay their CEOs huge amounts of money declare bankruptsy and the workers are left without even a pension. Our income is right above the poverty line and yet because we have saved something, we pay for every other person there is including the fat cat CEOs..My insurance is said to be non-profit but instead of people getting their premiums lowered with the surplus; the companies pay CEOs more and put out glossy worthless brochures. Workers have been losing money for years because lobbyists control the Congress and promise them perks if they don't vote for a decent minimum wage. If the minimum wage were adjusted to the cost of living it would be at least $20 an hr and CEOs would have to take lesser amounts. No other country has this huge disparity between the executives and the workers. You ought to be ashamed to accept this kind of money. And...lawmakers it is your duty to stop this nonsense and play fair! We end up with people on welfare because they can't make a living while corporations and their heads needs to pay just wages and benefits. Fix this situation NOW...Thank you