Cheney's $20M Package Said OK'd

Saturday, August 12th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) — The energy services company that Dick Cheney ran the last five years has agreed to let him retire with a package worth an estimated $20 million, The New York Times reported Saturday.

The board of the Dallas-based Halliburton Co. approved the arrangements on July 20, five days before Republican presidential nominee Texas Gov. George W. Bush announced his selection of Cheney as his running mate, according to sources who have reviewed the deal.

The board's vote allowed Cheney, 59, to avoid a potentially costly aspect of his employment contract, which said he would forfeit some of his compensation if he retired before age 62 without the board's permission. Cheney served as the company's chairman and chief executive.

The board did ``whatever the contract calls for,'' said member W.R. Howell.

``There was nothing done at the board level of an exceptional nature for Dick Cheney,'' Howell said.

Guy Marcus, a spokesman for Halliburton, told The Associated Press late Friday he did not know the details of Cheney's retirement package, but said Cheney was taking a normal early retirement, effective Aug. 16.

Cheney, who spent much of his life as a public official and federal employee, was paid at least $12.5 million in his years at Halliburton and received stock and options worth nearly $39 million at its current stock price, the Times said.

By permitting Cheney to treat his departure as early retirement, the directors allowed him to keep $10 million worth of stock and options he would have forfeited had he simply resigned, the company's public filings show. It was not clear whether the $10 million was part of the retirement package or in addition to it, the Times said.

One of the newspaper's sources briefed on the company's plan said the board was told the package totaled about $20 million.

Cheney spokesman Dirk Vande Beek told the Times that details of the package were being worked out, and said Cheney would remain an employee of Halliburton until Aug. 16 with the title ``chairman in transition.''

Cheney has said in interviews that he would sell off his Halliburton stock if the Republican ticket prevails in the fall.