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Bank CEO gets $1-million bonus

Barnett Banks Inc. chairman and chief executive Charles E. Rice received a bonus of more than $1-million in 1993, a year in which the banking company doubled its profits.

It was also a year in which Barnett cut another 2,088 jobs from its payroll and trimmed the cost of making a dollar from 71 cents to 65.

For that improvement, Rice's cash compensation climbed to $2.6-million in 1993 from $1.8-million the previous year, according to the Jacksonville-based bank's proxy statement.

In addition, Rice received 70,000 stock options worth as much as $4.7-million, according to the bank's estimates. In 1992, Rice received half that amount of options, worth up to an estimated $1.9-million.

Rice's compensation is based, in part, on the financial performance of the bank. For 1993, Barnett reported record earnings and profitability. Net income more than doubled from the previous year to $421-million.

The record year was realized through some serious cost-cutting and cost benefits realized from the acquisition of Tampa's First Florida Bank a year ago. Barnett started 1993 with 20,737 employees. It finished the year with 18,649, or 2,088 fewer.

Rice's base salary of $685,000 has remained the same since 1989. Also included in his 1993 compensation: $509,411 in cash from exercising stock options, a $172,425 cash award under the company's long-term performance program started in 1991, $200,135 in payments to Rice's 401(k) retirement plan and his executive life insurance policy.

_ Information from Bloomberg Business News was used in this report.