Artie M. “Chip” Owen, the chairman of the Southeastern Economic Development Corp., has responded to Mayor Jerry Sanders request for information into the organization’s practices of approving bonuses.

Along with the memo, Owen provides a detailed list of SEDC employees’ budgeted salary and actual compensation. It reveals for the first time the actual proportion of the bonuses and shows that almost every employee of the organization received some form of bonus or additional compensation over the past five fiscal years.

For example, in FY 2007-08, SEDC’s staff accountant, administrative support coordinator, executive assistant, senior accountant, finance director, and a project manager all received bonuses and extra compensation of at least $20,000.

Carolyn Smith, the organization’s president, earned $293,499.05 in bonuses over the course of the past five fiscal years.

Below is a chart I put together showing how Smith’s bonuses and additional compensation grew over five years relative to the growth of her budgeted salary.

SAM HODGSON

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