IRS Form 990 of the PR Society was on our desk Monday, Oct. 18 — more than five months after the audit was given to the Society on April 4, 2010.

For the second year in a row, Assembly delegates were deprived of the information in the 990, which includes the salaries of the eight highest paid staffers.

The form is not on the Society website nor accessible via GuideStar or Foundation Center 990 Finder.

Other information in the 990 and not in the audit is legal costs which totaled $124,016, topping the 2008 record of $110,452.

Such costs were only $65,327 in 2007 and $20,498 in 2003.

Two law firms work for the Society — the 600+ lawyer firm of Venable in D.C. and Sifton & Salimi in Brooklyn (Ann Thomas).

COO Bill Murray, after receiving a $50,000 raise in 2008, only got a $10,289 raise to $323,068 in 2009. He also received $32,500 in retirement/deferred compensation, and $18,050 in nontaxable benefits.

Neither he nor the board will reveal terms of his new two-year contract that started in January 2010.

Yann’s Pay Listed for First Time

VP-PR Arthur Yann’s pay was listed for the first time, $137,687, making him the fourth highest paid staffer. The amount of benefits is not shown.

Other salaries listed are CFO Philip Bonaventura, $184K; John Robinson, VP-corporate development, $140K; Karla Voth, VP-special events, $135K; Barbara McDonald, VP-marketing, $126K; Jennifer Ian, VP-membership, $121K, and Judith Voss, director, professional development, $115K.

Yann joined in August 2008. Voth has been with the Society since at least 1991 and Voss since 2000.

Ian has been a staffer since at least 2003.

The eight highest paid staffers received $1,285,207 in pay/benefits in 2009 and the other (estimated) 45 staffers received $4,082,999 pay/benefits or an average of $90,733 each.

The Society this year removed from the website names and contact points for all but seven of the staffers.

There were 25 Society employees at the conference in D.C. this week including some names we had not seen before—Ann Caggiano, Robert Denbo, John Gumbiner, Cecelia Hughes, Richard Spector, Keith Trivitt and Melissa Yahr.

Salaries/Benefits at 54% of Costs

The nine-month financial report, which is not in the Society’s “newsroom,” shows salaries/fringes at $3,905,111, a 3% decline from the same 2009 months.

The salaries/fringes accounted for 54% of expenses when the average percentage for groups with $10M in expenses is about 35% of expenses. Pay/benefits took 58.9% of income of $6,621,435 for the nine months.

Loss Cut to $581,822

Operating loss for the nine months was $581,822 vs. a loss of $1,033,389 for the same period in 2009. Income totaled $7,203,257 vs. $7,477,483 in 2009.

There was a gain of $119,135 on investments resulting in net loss of $462,687.

Occupancy costs, which were running slightly over $300,000 when h.q. were at 33 Irving place, were $755,982.

The Society moved downtown in 2004 to 22,000 sq. ft. at 33 Maiden lane from previous quarters of 14,000 sq. ft.

PRSA did not pay its first year’s rent and reported $592,278 in “accrued rent expenses” in its nine-months report.

According to Form 990, it has $739,628 in corporate bonds and preferred stocks, and $962,120 in common stocks (fair market value).

Last year’s 990 had a list of 34 stock sales but no such list was with the Form 990 sent to us this year. As of Sept. 30, 2009, it had 52% of its $1,765,000 in investments in common stocks.