Oops: Newseum & Freedom Forum Paid Out $1.4 Million In Bonuses In 08

flickr: NCinDC

In a year the Newseum laid off about 40 people, the museum and its parent nonprofit, Freedom Forum, paid $1.4 million in bonuses to its top employees, Gannett Blog reports. Freedom Forum chairman and CEO Charles Overby received a $375,000 bonus, bringing his total pay to almost $1 million, and the museum’s then-president received a $225,000 bonus.

The bonuses were contingent on “successful completion” of the Newseum’s new building, which is, indeed, completed, as well as deferred bonus amounts from past years. So these guys did indeed do what they were supposed to do to earn this money.

But did you have to take the money and lay off 50 people?