CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Duke Energy says its top executive's compensation has more than doubled over the past two years.
The country's No. 2 electricity company by total customers reported to shareholders that Chief Executive Officer Lynn Good was paid more than $21.4 million in 2017, an increase from $10.8 million in 2015.
The company's proxy filing released Friday says Good's base salary rose last year by about 4 percent to $1.3 million, but her stock awards shot up almost 90 percent to more than $17 million.
Duke Energy has 7.5 million customers in the Carolinas, Florida, Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky.
The Charlotte-based company won approval to raise prices on about half its North Carolina customers by 6 percent, and wants to increase rates on the rest of its largest market by 10 percent.
UPDATED 3/11/18 8:48 P.M.
Duke Energy sent over this statement to WFMY News 2 explaining how the CEO's pay is set:
Duke Energy company statement
- In compliance with a new federal rule, Duke Energy stated in its preliminary proxy statement (filed today with the SEC) that CEO Lynn Good’s 2017 compensation was approximately $21.4 million, and the median 2017 compensation of its other employees was approximately $122,000 – resulting in a “CEO-to-median employee” compensation ratio of 175 to 1. (The median employee’s total compensation comprises salary, annual bonus, pension accruals and company matching contributions to the employee’s 401(k) retirement plan.)
- Duke Energy maintains a competitive, market-based compensation structure for every job at every level, including the CEO position, to ensure attraction and retention of top talent.
- Duke Energy CEO Lynn Good oversees one of the largest critical-infrastructure energy companies in the U.S. – a job that comes with tremendous responsibilities – most importantly, the provision of safe, reliable electric service to 7.5 million customers in six states, and natural gas service to 1.6 million customers in five states, 24/7.
- Approximately 90 percent of her compensation is stock and performance-based – which means the vast majority of her compensation is at risk and thus might not be earned if future corporate performance is below certain levels.
- Under Lynn Good’s leadership, Duke Energy in 2017 had a strong year delivering value for customers and shareholders. Examples:
- Reliable, affordable electric service to 7.5 million customers – with rates below the national average.
- A new, more stringent carbon dioxide emissions reduction of 40 percent by 2030, from 2005 levels.
- Continued construction of new, cleaner natural gas power plants in three states.
- Growth in the company’s natural gas business, with the opening of the Sabal Trail Pipeline and progress in obtaining approvals to build the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
- An approximately 4 percent increase in the company’s dividend payment – the 11th consecutive year of dividend growth.
- A 13 percent total shareholder return – exceeding the 12.8 total return of the industry benchmark Philadelphia Utility Index.