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Bonus system changes would reduce payout, increase accountability, redirect funds to the needy
By Tracy Idell Hamilton on September 17, 2013
CPS Energy’s earned incentive pay (EIP) program, widely known as the utility’s bonus pay system, will be altered in a way that would increase accountability and reduce the payouts to employees, CEO Doyle Beneby said last week.
He announced the change at a Sept. 9 public information session held by the company’s Board of Trustees at the Tripoint YMCA to discuss the utility’s rate increase request.
Beneby suggested redirecting the money saved, which could total more than $4 million, to expand affordability programs for low-income customers such as the utility’s Residential Energy Assistance Program (REAP).
“The community has concerns about our compensation structure. We are sensitive to that,” he said.
Speaking at the public input session, Beneby suggested overlaying a standard performance distribution rating system for individual employees on top of the existing company-wide incentive pay system.
Under the current system, in place since 2000, when company-wide goals are met in areas such as safety, affordability, customer satisfaction and reliability, employees are eligible for incentive pay.
Beneby arrived at CPS Energy in 2010.
Under the proposed new system, if company-wide goals are achieved, incentive pay would be paid out in tiers, based on individual performance. Underperforming employees would remain ineligible.
Details are still being evaluated, but the plan would go into effect for the next fiscal year, which begins Feb. 1, 2014.