President Trump Calls TVA Leader’s Salary ‘Ridiculous’

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President Donald Trump said Wednesday that Tennessee Valley Authority CEO Jeffrey Lyash receives “ridiculous” compensation.

This, according to KnoxNews.com, which reported that a New York Post reporter asked Trump about Lyash’s compensation as the head of a quasi-public federal agency at Wednesday’s media briefing.

“Members of your administration have pointed out that the top-paid federal employee, it’s not the president … it’s the head of the Tennessee Valley Authority and he made $8 million last year,” New York Post reporter Steve Nelson asked Trump.

Trump responded with this:

“You said Tennessee Valley Authority, right? Has to be the highest-paid man in any government (position),” Trump said.

“Makes approximately $8 million or $9 million. I don’t know the gentleman, but he’s got a heck of a job. He gets paid a lot of money.”

Trump then said he would want to reduce Lyash’ salary “by a lot.”

KnoxNews.com then quoted TVA spokesman Jim Hopson, who said Lyash gets his salary from electricity sales revenue — not taxpayer money and Lyash’s pay is lower than that of his industry peers.

“TVA’s mission of service requires that we attract and retain highly skilled individuals in a specialized industry,” Hopson reportedly said.

“Although a federal corporation, TVA receives no federal funding for its operations.”

U.S. Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee addressed the matter in an emailed press release late Wednesday night.

“Attacking TVA doesn’t do one thing to solve the pandemic and has no place in federal COVID-19 response legislation. TVA does not receive one dollar in federal taxpayer subsidies or federal appropriations. To help families pay their electric bills and keep their power on during this crisis, TVA has made $1 billion in credit available to help 154 local electric utilities in seven states,” Alexander said.

“White House staff is unfortunately spreading inaccurate information. When this crisis is over, I’ll be glad to explain to them the facts about the TVA CEO’s pay, which is lower than other big utilities, and TVA’s rates, which are among the lowest in the country, and the number of federal taxpayer dollars going to TVA , which is zero.”

As reported last year, Tennessee Valley Authority executives indulged in an excessive amount of spending on luxuries for themselves, according to an audit. These activities included executives having expensive steak dinners and using chauffeurs instead of cabs, among other things.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Jeff Lyash” by Tennessee Valley Authority.

 

 

 

 

 

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4 Thoughts to “President Trump Calls TVA Leader’s Salary ‘Ridiculous’”

  1. CCW

    “White House staff is unfortunately spreading inaccurate information. When this crisis is over, I’ll be glad to explain to them the facts about the TVA CEO’s pay, which is lower than other big utilities, and TVA’s rates, which are among the lowest in the country, and the number of federal taxpayer dollars going to TVA , which is zero.”

    This old saw to justify the outrageous TVA top salaries has been proven wrong over and over. Those top jobs are not promotions from within, they are big political payoff jobs.

    They need to put top TVA salaries back on the GS Rating system. If need be, put a modified GS Rating into effect. Just make sure the GS’s rates are posted.

    The original justification for the high salaries, even back in the 80’s and 90’s, was that it was necessary to attract good people. Recent events have proven that to be ridiculous.

    Head of the TVA Nuclear Engineering was an Iranian. I am surprised that the current head is not Red Chinese.

  2. Lamar Alexander was on the oversight Committee or board in the Senate. Repeated communications with Tn Valley Citizens to reign in TVA Execs and policies were simply ignored or turned away with BS! When the price offuels went down the TVA Board gave Industry a hefty cut in rates but not Citizens. They kept in place the large increases to us. Many years ago, now the Courts ruled TVA must fund Recreational Facilities etc at the same levels as the corps of Engineers. Appeals to Alexander and TVA were simply ignored. Campgrounds etc that were were closed remain closed. Rates in the are served by TVA re now among the highest in the nation, IMO. Alexander and others want to break up and privatize TVA Raising rates was one way of attracting private Investors to the table.
    A revolving door with private industry and TVA Leadership now exists. In the 1970s our bill fro electric power was in the twenty dollar a month range and i n winter the thirty dollar per month area. When we moved it was in the high to hundred dollar range in summer to as much as four hundred in winter on a small home. Communications with Governor Haslam and others before him met with nothing wee can do. A favorite with Alexander was. being able to offer competitive competitive salaries to get top Management. Tennessee Valley Citizens are livid at the high rates and .local coops add rate increases on top of TVA rate increases and none have gone back down except to industry, I believe. And.. the country Club running TVA answers to no one under protection of RINOs in Congress whose goal remains to privatize TVA and cash in.by rewarding “investors.”

  3. Kevin

    It may be true that “… TVA receives no federal funding for its operations.”, but it sure got and gets plenty of government protection. Who is TVA’s competition? They have none, thanks to the Federal government! When TVA does something that their customers don’t like, where can the customer turn as an alternative? They can’t, so the customer is hosed!

    This is just one of the many examples of how government has overstepped the original scope that “we the people” intended. This is also why the “deep state” and it’s shill, the media, hate Trump so much. He’s on to them!

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