ALEXANDRIA, Va.-NCUA employees, for the first time this year, were given half their annual raises up front in March and half spread throughout the year. The total effect was to lower the salary that the following year's pay increase is based on since the lump sum is not included as part of the salary, as well as decrease retirement benefits. The projection for 2002 was $1.9 million in savings to the agency. The same system was approved for fiscal year 2003. Personnel costs account for approximately three-quarters of NCUA's budget. At the same time, the salaries of NCUA's senior staff made news because they were generally higher than at other federal financial institution regulators. A full 25% of NCUA staff makes more than $100,000 per year. Topping that chart were Executive Director Len Skiles at $251,894; General Counsel Bob Fenner at $231,928; $230,001 for Region VI Director Bob Blatner; and Director of Examination and Insurance Dave Marquis at $222,965. These figures take into account locality rates, aimed at raising the level of pay comparable to similar work in that area. For example, Blatner's base salary is $168,585, but he also receives 36.43% more for being based in the high-salaried San Francisco-area. NCUA revealed a plan this year to move the Region VI headquarters to a less expensive area. On the other hand, the NCUA Chairman and board members earn $138,200 and $130,000, respectively, which is based on congressional salaries. [email protected]

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