Wheeling-Pitt Execs Get Pay Hikes and Pensions While Company Struggles

August 14, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation said it is upping the pay and pensions for some of its top managers, the Associated Press reported.

Wednesday’s filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission about increased benefits comes at a time when the company is trying to orchestrate a merger with a Brazilian steelmaker and fend off a takeover bid by Chicago-based steel supplier Esmark Inc.

The steel giant claims many of its executives have not received a raise in years, defending a decision that will cost the company an estimated $316,000 each year for the next decade.

The AP reported that executives suffered 15% pay cuts and members of the United Steelworkers union acquiesced to lower pay in 2003 as the company went through bankruptcy.

James Bradley, Wheeling-Pittsburgh chairman and chief executive officer, didn’t get an increase in his salary, but he did get a new supplemental pension plan, which allows companies to give executives pensions that exceed regular limits, according to a news wire service.

The company employs about 3,100 plants in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.