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Commerce CEO Watson nets $68,750 bonus

Sandra620Arizona Commerce Authority CEO Sandra Watson netted a $68,750 bonus for fiscal year 2013 to along with her $250,000 salary.

The authority’s executive committee on Wednesday approved Watson’s bonus based on a set of criteria, including job creation, capital investment, federal grants and others. Watson was eligible for up to $75,000 in bonus money.

The executive committee voted based on the recommendations of the ACA’s compensation committee, which met on Tuesday. The compensation committee had planned to meet over the summer, but twice rescheduled.


Watson’s bonus depended on five goals:

-Be credited with bringing 12,000 new jobs to Arizona over the next three years

-Be credited with attracting $1 billion in capital investment over the next three years

-Obtain $2 million in matching funds from third parties to go along with a $2 million commitment by the ACA for a national branding campaign

-Secure $4 million federal grants for the next three years

-Meet “overall performance” criteria, such as improving or creating new ACA programs, creating a positive public relations atmosphere or improving staff morale


Watson met 100 percent of the job creation, capital investment, federal grant and overall performance criteria. The committee credited Watson with helping to bring 15,262 jobs to Arizona, more than $1.2 billion in capital investment and $6.2 million in federal grants.

The only area where Watson fell short was in branding, where she received $6,250 of a possible $12,500. Watson brought in $1 million of the $2 million goal. That $1 million came from the Arizona Office of Tourism.

She was also eligible for a supplemental bonus for extraordinary results for exceeding any of the other metrics. She would get an additional 1 percent of her base salary, with a maximum of an extra 5 percent total, for each increment of 2,000 new jobs, $100 in capital investment, $1 million in federal grants or matching funds for the national branding campaign, or the attraction of “super high positive visibility employers” or major corporate headquarters, according to ACA documents.

Watson qualified for $17,500 in supplemental bonus money, but received less because her total supplemental bonus is capped at $12,500.

The executive committee also established criteria for Watson’s fiscal year 2014 bonus, which slightly increased some of the benchmarks from the previous year. To achieve her maximum bonus, Watson must bring in 13,000 new jobs and $1.1 billion in capital investment. She will still have to obtain $2 million in matching funds for the authority’s national branding campaign, and meet the same overall performance benchmarks.

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