Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Saturday

June 22, 2013

Munson top execs took salary freezes in 2011

TRAVERSE CITY — It’s the ex-job that keeps on giving.

Munson Healthcare’s former president and CEO collected $599,144 in severance pay in 2011, a year after his sudden resignation, according to tax returns recently released by nonprofit Munson Healthcare.

Douglas K. Deck left Munson in May 2010 amid controversial merger talks with Spectrum Health Systems. His nearly $600,000 pay-out in 2011 comes on top of his 2010 severance payment of $362,560, plus a $150,000 bonus in 2010, tax returns show.

Deck’s total bonus, base pay and other perks in 2010-11 totaled more than $1.65 million, including about $778,000 in accumulated retirement benefits.

And for Deck, there’s more to come.

“The majority of severance has been paid, and there will be some remaining in 2012,” said Sue Peters, Munson Medical Center’s vice president for human resources.

Peters didn’t release Deck’s 2012 compensation because auditors have not yet signed off on it.

Deck landed a job in January 2011 as a senior vice president for Advocate Health Care in Chicago, but since left that post.

Meanwhile, Munson executives — vice presidents and higher — both proposed and accepted a freeze of their base wage for 2011, while most other Munson employees received single-digit raises, said Munson Healthcare Board Chairman Dan Wolf.

Munson-wide executive bonuses declined from $777,592 in 2010 to $463,085, a 40 percent decrease. Bonuses are based on the performance of the overall institution and affiliates, and the individuals’ performance of agreed-upon goals, Wolf said.

Wolf said it’s fair to ask why Deck received such a significant payout when the hospital kept a lid on salaries and bonuses in 2011.

“These compensation agreements are contracted and settled at the time of employment and they are contractual obligations just as other agreements we make,” he said.

The 990 tax returns also include salaries of Munson’s top paid contractors and physicians. Munson, like hospitals across the country, are employing increasing numbers of physicians. That owes to regulatory hassles and financial pressures making it too difficult for doctors to run their own practices.

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