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Thread: NRA Salaries!

  1. #1
    Harley Dude sig232 will become famous soon enough sig232's Avatar
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    Default NRA Salaries!

    This is the result of a Google search but was posted at the forum that BillT chatted about.

    Do you consider the salary levels to be excessive for a organization with an annual budget in the 120 million range?

    Here is the article"

    Taking aim at the NRA’s high salaries
    Posted December 22nd, 2007 at 9:30 am


    The Washington Post ran an interesting opinion column recently by Richard Feldman, a former lobbyist for the National Rifle Association who has become critical of the organization.

    Feldman slams the NRA for eschewing all forms of compromise and taking extreme positions. He speculates that top NRA executives actually want to keep conflict over guns alive because it’s good for fundraising — and the personal bottom lines of the NRA’s top leaders. Feldman writes:

    Harlon B. Carter, who created the modern NRA in the 1970s, earned about $70,000 a year (about $200,000 in today’s dollars) as executive vice president and was driven to meetings in the company Chevrolet. Wayne LaPierre, who currently sits upon the executive vice president throne, pocketed about $950,000 in 2005. The parking lot at the association’s twin-glass-towered headquarters off Interstate 66 in Virginia is filled with shiny new BMWs and Mercedes-Benzes.

    What’s unseemly about the stratospheric six-figure salaries flowing into NRA leadership wallets is that the cash comes from hundreds of thousands of members who are hard pressed to write $35 annual membership renewal checks or send an extra $10 or $20 to the NRA Political Victory Fund to protect their guns.

    I got curious after reading those figures. Non-profit groups holding a 501 (c)(3) status are required to fill out a document called a Form 990 every year. It’s a detailed financial statement, and by law these groups are required to make it available to the public.

    This means you can stop by the office of a non-profit group and ask to see its 990. You can also request a copy by mail, but this takes time, and the organization is allowed to charge you a “reasonable” fee for copying and mailing.

    The rise of the web has made things a little easier. Several groups have come along that post 990s online. One of the best is Guidestar. (Free registration is required to look at material on Guidestar.)

    One of the things the 990 lists is the organization’s top five salaries, so I pulled up the NRA’s most recent report.

    It dates from 2004. At that time, LaPierre’s salary was listed at $633,823. (This is salary only and does not include other forms of compensation, such as health care.) The four salaries below him were all above $300,000, with two approaching $400,000.

    That was three years ago. I think we can assume they’ve gone up since then.

    The term “six-figure salary” can be a deceptive. The U.S. median income in 2006 was $48,200. In some regions of the country, you could live on that quite well; in others it would be a stretch. In Washington and its surrounding suburbs, where many non-profits are located, an executive “six-figure salary” in the low 100s would not be considered excessive. In the D.C. area, even a modest house in a marginal suburb now costs at least half a million dollars.

    But $950,000? That’s excessive by non-profit standards anywhere. It might be acceptable in the corporate world, but the NRA isn’t the corporate world. It’s a non-profit group. People who work for non-profits forgo higher salaries for the less tangible benefits offered by public advocacy.

    Non-profit organizations are closely regulated by the Internal Revenue Service. A standard rule is that excessive compensation is a red flag that something is not right. In fact, the IRS in August of 2004 launched an effort to crack down on exorbitant salaries in the non-profit world.

    “We are concerned that some charities and private foundations are abusing their tax-exempt status by paying exorbitant compensation to their officers and others,” said Mark W. Everson, IRS commissioner at the time, in a press release.

    I do not know what, if anything, ever became of that initiative. But looking at these NRA salaries, I can only conclude that more work needs to be done. I support the NRA’s right to promote its point of view, although I disagree with it. I simply see no reason why its top leaders should be permitted to loot a non-profit in the process.

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    One reply to this article was this comment:


    True that nonprofit salaries are typically not in line with corporate salaries but depending on the annual budget of said nonprofit salaries can be quite high (though still not in the same range if that employee was doing the exact same job for a private company.) A bit of “help your neighbor AND help yourself.”

    A CEO/President who runs a nonprofit with an annual budget of $1 million dollars will make much less than a CEO/President who runs a nonprofit with an annual budget of over $120 million - the annual budget of the NRA. For example, the salary range for exec staff in a nonprofit with an annual budget of only $15 million dollars is in the $1 -300,000/year range which puts the NRA salaries cited well within an acceptable range.

    In addition, every nonprofit uses individual donations and membership fees (if they have them) towards salary - it’s that general support money that is less restrictive and easiest to put towards those things no one wants to support - like rent, mailing costs, and yes, salaries.

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    I believe this is the source of a lot of anti NRA rhetoric that is on several forums. Its coming out of the Washington Post and written by a lawyer named Fieldman. He supposedly worked for the NRA and left in 1997.

    This may be just another gun nut intent on the destruction of the NRA. I take this stuff with a grain of salt and do not believe everything I read. If the NRA was so intent on keeping the pot stirred they would never have agreed to the recent changes in the NICS law signed by the President.

    You pay big money for good talent to run a company. The NRA has a large Board of Directors elected by the membership and changed often. They are elected by the membership so I imagine we would be hearing a lot from them if the NRA management was fleecing the membership.

    What do you folks think?

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    One thing you've got to remember is that guys like Chris Cox, and Wayne La Pierre make several public speaking engagements on the manure tour that they get paid handsomely for. The same goes for the President of the NRA. What they earn themselves because of, "who they are", doesn't fall into any non profit conflict of interest. Chris Cox is a lawyer and I'm not sure but I believe La Pierre has a law degree also. I'm not saying $950,000.00 a year is just, but these guys did well before they became part of the NRA. Look at what the ex Presidents make for speaking engagements. The NRA is a very high profile organization, non profit yes, but most holding high positions within it will most likely be compensated by other vested interests outside the organization for sure. About the last thing the NRA would need is a scandal involving shady finances. You can bet the anti gun groups have explored that avenue to the max. If there was any dirt, you'd hear about it. That's one apple cart they'd love to upset. Bill T.
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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    OK lets tear down the NRA. Then who do we have to put preasure on the legal system of the social eleits. :?: They are the only gun rep group in this country with enough power to fight the system. It's good to have others rep's and to belong to them but they do not have the clout of the NRA. Do I agree witheverything they do of corse not. Do you :?: I'll stay a member and make my small donations for as long as I live.
    Another thing what do I care about what they drive. What does your average statesmen drive around in. Limo's on the tax payers dime. Now that urks me. :roll:

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    Yep, BillT I agree.

    Kick their butts over at Blackrifle.com

    Ask them if they follow everything that the Washington Post and the New York Times dishes out about the NRA? Appears that is one of their big sources of information.

    I thought about letting them know that McCarthy is going to bring out that new Assault weapons ban and the government will soon be picking up all their toys at Blackrifle.com. But then I reconsidered and decided that was a bit over the line and I would be labeled a Meany!

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    Living 5 miles up the road from the NRA, I can tell you that the only $500,000 homes there are have recently come down to that value, were built in the 1950s, and are about 1,000-1,200 square feet.

    I've been in my home for almost 30 years, everything around me has been replaced with $900,000 homes…that’s the norm for a post-1990 home.

    My back yard butts up against an 8,500 square foot $2 Million home. (I used to deliver papers to the 800 square foot home that was there before).

    President & CEO of the Red Cross makes over $1 Million according to one website, others put the figure closer to $700,000. I think NRA members are more satisfied with the use of their contributions than most Red Cross 9/11 contributors.

    Harold Varmus, chief executive officer of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, in New York, topped the 2005 list with compensation of $2,491,450. (Helping the ill?)

    Peter Traber, chief executive officer of Baylor College of Medicine, in Houston, who earned $1,237,200 in 2005. (Helping the ill?)

    Michael Kaiser, president of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, in Washington, earned $1,029,691 in 2005.

    Personally, I have no issue with the salaries of CEOs whose jobs consume their every waking moment. That's what it takes, good luck to them, as long as they provide value for the money.

    Regarding the fancy cars, I used to work with a guy who was in his 20s and drove a Porsche. His secret? Still lived with mom. Things ain't always what they appear to be.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    I think we've had this discussion before but it's good to do so again with all of our new friends. My stance remains the same, i.e., Wayne and the others could just as well be making nearly $1M / yr elsewhere. It's whether or not we, the members, choose to be competitive with the huge sums of money being waved about by the antis.

    How much does Sara pay her minions? Who does she get to endorse her anti-gun, anti-freedom message? As I've said before, I think Wayne is doing a hell of a job, especially given the atmosphere he has to work in. God forbid a Dem gets elected, we should double his salary.

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    Default Re: NRA Salaries!

    Quote Originally Posted by gunrnr
    I think we've had this discussion before but it's good to do so again with all of our new friends. My stance remains the same, i.e., Wayne and the others could just as well be making nearly $1M / yr elsewhere. It's whether or not we, the members, choose to be competitive with the huge sums of money being waved about by the antis.

    How much does Sara pay her minions? Who does she get to endorse her anti-gun, anti-freedom message? As I've said before, I think Wayne is doing a hell of a job, especially given the atmosphere he has to work in. God forbid a Dem gets elected, we should double his salary.
    I agree. Wayne does one heck of a job with the resources that he has to work with.

    I don't know the size of the Brady organization but I don't think their membership comes close to the GOA's size much less the NRA. Anyone know their statistics?

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    "We may never win the battle for Gun Rights, but, as long as we keep fighting, neither will we ever lose it." Jeff Cooper.

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