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CBS President Les Moonves’ 2015 Pay Slips Slightly to $56.8 Million

Chairman Emeritus Sumner Redstone’s all-in compensation nosedives to just $1.7 million

We’ve got good news, Les Moonves, and we’ve got bad news.

First, the bad news: Your 2015 pay was down from the prior year. The good news is you still made $56.8 million, which represents a decline of just about 0.7 percent. We’d say the CBS president, CEO and board chairman will be just fine.

Moonves’ salary slid just a hair — a drop in pension value made a difference. The exec’s bonus declined quite a bit — as did his options — but Moonves’ stock numbers were there to offset those and most of the pension loss.

The ailing Sumner Redstone — now chairman emeritus — pulled in just $1.7 million last year, down harder year over year from 2014’s $10.8 million. That’s an 82.3 percent drop.

Redstone had no bonus this past year — in 2014, he got $9 million. That’s where the material difference comes from.

The 92-year-old Redstone is currently embroiled in a court battle with his former companion, Manuela Herzer. Just yesterday, it was decided by a judge that the National Amusements founder will not be deposed in the matter.

Last year, Herzer sued to be reinstated as the steward of Redstone’s care. Her case claimed Redstone was like a “living ghost,” unable to follow conversations and sign his own name, and exposed prurient allegations of his sexual appetite. Redstone’s lawyers rejected the claims as an attempt to insinuate herself in his estate after she was removed in October.

The resulting drama has been legal spectacle grabbing the attention of watchers both in both Hollywood and on Wall Street. Through National Amusements, Redstone is controlling shareholder of two media giants, Viacom and CBS, thanks to special shares that give him roughly 80 percent ownership over both.

Last week, lawyers for Redstone and Herzer appeared close to a settlement, having agreed in principle to a preliminary framework for a deal that would have averted a trial. Herzer would drop her suit and cease contact with Redstone in exchange for a seven-figure sum, according to a person briefed on the matter. That deal would also place Redstone in control of his own health care, while his daughter, Shari, and a long-time family friend based in Los Angeles would become his health-care proxy should he become incapacitated.