Rep. Schakowsky scolds CEO over pay raise

April 3, 2010 9:22:27 PM PDT
The CEO of the giant health insurance company Wellpoint got a big pay raise last year, at the same time the company was getting ready to raise customers' rates.Angela Braly's income jumped from $8 million to a little more than $13 million, a big raise even as the company was hiking premiums.

At a hearing Saturday, Illinois Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky admonished Braly for her multi-million-dollar salary while hiking premiums and had a message for the CEO.

"Thank goodness we passed health care legislation, landmark healthcare legislation, that's going to get you and your company under control," said U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky, a Democrat who represents Illinois and Chicago's northern suburbs.

The company defends the pay raise, saying Braly took a pay cut the year before, weathered tough times, contained costs, and increased shareholder value. It says her raise reflects her performance and the company's.

Last year, Wellpoint reported more than $4 billion in profits.

The CEO of Cigna insurance company got a 28-percent pay hike, and Humana's CEO received a 26-percent raise.