Facebook Twitter

Joklik may be paid: When, how much?

SHARE Joklik may be paid: When, how much?

Frank Joklik may finally start collecting a paycheck as the head of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee - if trustees can agree on how much money he should be making.

Members of the SLOC Board of Trustees' compensation committee are scheduled to meet early Thursday morning to see if they can settle on an amount for Joklik before the full board meets at 10 a.m.If they can come up with a pay package, trustees could consider it Thursday. But SLOC Chairman Bob Garff said he's not sure whether the committee will have anything ready for trustees to vote on.

"There's a chance it could happen, yes," Garff said Tuesday. Or not. "Frank's salary - that may be off the table. . . . People may not be comfortable. It may be too high or too low."

Joklik hasn't been paid since he took over as the chief executive officer and president of the organizing committee last summer after Tom Welch was charged with domestic abuse.

Trustees are said to be eager to avoid riling up the public over what they pay the top official of the 2002 Winter Games. So they're likely to limit Jok-lik's salary to about what Welch was getting - $325,000 a year.

"Was Tom Welch's salary controversial? Of course it was. You know that," Garff said. "I think it would be fair to say we would not, as SLOC, in terms of salary, want to do things that are controversial."

What's not clear is how much the trustees will set aside for Joklik once the Olympics are over. A multi-million-dollar pension fund was set up more than a year ago for Welch and two other top SLOC officials.

Only one of the three officials covered by the plan, SLOC Senior Vice President of Games Dave Johnson, is still around. If he stays through 2002, he'll collect more than $62,500 annually for the rest of his life.

Welch's post-Games pension would have been more than $100,000 a year. He complained when his salary was set back in 1995 that it was low compared to the $700,000-plus the head of the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta earned.

There also was a public uproar over the $2 million severance package offered to Welch that included a $1 million payment to compensate him for his years as an unpaid volunteer.

Welch turned down the $1 million but did accept a $10,000-a-month consulting contract with the organizing committee plus a retirement benefit worth more than $600,000 with interest.

Joklik won't say whether he expects to make more than Welch did. "I don't think I can comment on that," he said. Even though he hasn't been paid in almost a year, Joklik said he has "not felt frustrated."

Also to be decided is whether Joklik's salary should be made retroactive to when he was hired last August. Joklik won't say how he feels about that but reportedly has told trustees he doesn't expect the back pay.

Before taking the top job at SLOC, Joklik had been chairman of the board of trustees, a volunteer post. He was making more than $118,000 annually as the president and CEO of a local mining company, MK Gold Co.

Joklik took a leave of absence from the MK Gold job as of June 30 and was appointed chairman of the company. Company officials said Joklik can fulfill his Olympic responsibilities while remaining involved in strategic decisions.

Whatever trustees decide about Joklik's salary, Garff said it will be made public. "If it's an action item that requires a vote, it will be made public. On executive compensation, that is an action item that would require a vote."