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USA Today Examines Salaries Of CEOs At U.S. Government-Funded Foreign Aid Non-Profits

USA Today reports on its investigation into the salaries of “government-funded non-profit” CEOs who “are paid to deliver U.S. foreign assistance,” which revealed four of the top 10 largest foreign aid contractors made more than a half-million dollars in 2007. “Although President Obama and Congress placed a $500,000 cap on salaries at companies getting taxpayer bailouts, there is no such restriction on those that subsist on federal grants – even those delivering aid to some of the world’s poorest regions,” the newspaper writes.

The newspaper features comments by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) – “the ranking Republican on the Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction over non-profit compensation” – and Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) – “who chairs the subcommittee that funds foreign aid” – who both view the pay as being “excessive” and several non-profit leaders who defend their salaries as “appropriate.”

According to the newspaper, USAID “relies on a cadre of for-profit companies and tax-exempt groups to deliver foreign assistance programs, which Obama says has gone awry. ‘Western consultants and administrative costs end up gobbling huge percentages of our aid overall,’ Obama said to the news website in July,” the newspaper writes (Dilanian, 8/31).