Filing shows pay for top NRA officials surges as key program spending declined: report
According to new tax filings, compensation for top executives and employees at the National Rifle Association (NRA) skyrocketed this past year even as the budget for the organization’s educational programs and other services were slashed.
From 2017 to 2018, high-level compensation rose 41 percent, including a 57 percent increase for chief executive Wayne LaPierre, raising his yearly earnings from the organization to $2.15 million, The Washington Post reports.
Conversely, the NRA reportedly cut its spending on education and training 22 percent, hunter services 61 percent and field services such as volunteer organizing by 51 percent.
NRA officials told the Post that the pay raises were the result of analysis done by a group of board members. Spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said that the organization also “eliminated costly advertising” in several areas.
“Priority number one is investing in the projects and services that best serve our members and protect their Second Amendment freedoms,” Arulanandam said.
The tax filings also reveal that the NRA’s legal fees tripled in the past year to more than $25 million.
Arulanandam told the Post that the NRA makes “no apologies for doubling down on the investment required to confront our enemies and unprecedented attacks on our members in 2018.”
It was indeed a rough year for the country’s most powerful pro-gun rights organization.
Board President Oliver North was forced out in April, a court battle with longtime NRA public relations agency Ackerman McQueen escalated sharply and the attorneys general of New York and Washington, D.C., opened investigations into the tax-exempt group’s spending.
According to the Post, eight of the NRA’s 76 board members have resigned since the spring.
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