Perquisites and Other Benefits. We provide a limited number of
perquisites and other benefits to certain of our NEOs, which include club dues, parking and executive physicals. Additional details of the perquisites and other benefits we provide are more fully described in the footnotes to the All Other
Compensation column of the Summary Compensation Table below.
We provide these perquisites and other benefits to
promote a healthy work/life balance and provide opportunities for developing business relationships. We believe they are important to our ability to attract and retain top-quality executive talent and are consistent with those provided to executives
at other companies comparable to us. The costs associated with providing these benefits for our NEOs are reflected in the All Other Compensation column of the Summary Compensation Table below on page 29.
Our NEOs also participate in the same standard salaried benefit plans as our other U.S. salaried employees. This includes a basic
welfare benefits package consisting of medical, dental, vision, life and disability insurance and accident insurance plans, as well as flexible spending arrangements for health care, dependent care and transportation expenses.
Mr. Lacy is also eligible for a post-retirement survivor benefit under our Survivor Benefit Plan. This plan is described in
further detail in the Survivor Benefit Plan section on page 36 below.
Changes for our 2017 Executive
In order to more closely align base salaries to market, based on market data provided by
Meridian Compensation Partners, LLC, the committee approved increases in base salary ranging from 3.3% to 12% effective April 1, 2017 for all of our NEOs. The committee approved a 12% salary increase for Mr. Ball in light of the companys
exceptionally strong performance in 2016 and in order to ensure that his base salary was competitive as compared to peer practice.
Compensation Policies and Practices
Compensation and Risk. The committee believes that the companys compensation policies and practices do
not create risks that are reasonably likely to have a material adverse effect on the
company. The committee has designed a total compensation package with features that it believes will mitigate the risks associated with compensation policies and practices including:
Our compensation programs provide a reasonable balance between annual and long-term performance,
with a significant portion of compensation being delivered in the form of long-term incentives;
Annual cash incentives are determined based on the companys performance;
The committee has the ability to modify annual cash incentives earned to reflect the quality of
the companys financial performance, individual performance and other factors that should influence compensation;
The long-term incentive program focuses participants on longer-term operating performance, as
well as stock price appreciation; and
Executives are subject to stock ownership requirements that encourage a long-term perspective and
ensure that the interests of executive officers are closely aligned with shareholders.
Consultants. In accordance with its authority to retain advisors, in early 2016, the committee engaged Meridian Compensation Partners, LLC (Meridian) as outside consultants to advise the committee with respect to 2016
compensation design decisions.
Meridian does not advise our management, or receive any other compensation from us. In
its role as independent advisor to the committee, Meridian provided advice to the committee from time to time on various executive compensation matters including conducting an annual competitive compensation analysis, which Meridian prepared for the
committee in early 2016.
In compliance with the SEC and the NYSE disclosure requirements regarding the independence of
compensation consultants, Meridian provided the committee with a completed questionnaire addressing each of the six independence factors enumerated in the SEC requirements. Their responses affirm the independence of Meridian and the partners,
consultants, and employees who service the committee on executive compensation matters and governance issues.