Waste Management Chief's Pay Tied to Performance

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Byline: Dan Culloton Daily Herald Business Writer

Waste Management Inc. will pay Ronald T. LeMay a $1.5 million salary and a generous helping of stock options for leaving Sprint Corp. to become its new chairman and chief executive.

LeMay's five-year contract announced Friday is another example of a trend among major corporations to tie executive compensation to company performance in the stock market, said Carol Bowie, editor of Executive Compensation Reports.

Waste Management spokesman Bill Plunkett said LeMay's contract is competitive with the pay for other heads of multinational corporations. "He'll do well as our shareholders do well," Plunkett said.

Waste Management's stock closed down 31 cents Friday at $32.31.

Oak Brook-based Waste Management hired LeMay last month away from Sprint Corp., where he was the No. 2 executive. He succeeds Waste Management founder Dean L. Buntrock.

In addition to his base salary Waste Management will grant LeMay options to buy 2 million shares of company stock between 1998 and 2002 and will give him a $1 million bonus for 1997. …