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Westmoreland Coal top exec resigns, takes bonus designed to keep him through bankruptcy

Posted at 8:24 PM, Dec 13, 2018
and last updated 2019-07-17 14:50:45-04

BILLINGS- The chief financial officer of Westmoreland Coal is resigning and collecting more than $1 million in incentives, all while the company is navigating Chapter 11  bankruptcy.

Westmoreland announced Wednesday that CFO Gary Kohn is leaving Jan. 4 due to personal reasons.

According to federal bankruptcy filings, Kohn is one of 243 employees eligible for bonuses under Westmoreland’s “valued employees” plan, which the company says it needs to prevent key employees from leaving during bankruptcy proceedings.

Kohn received about $995,000 in “key employee” incentives and another $210,100 from Westmoreland’s ” Short Term Incentive Program”.

Kohn started work for Fort Collins, Colo.-based Westmoreland in April 2016 and just seven months later was named the company’s Interim CFO. His annual base salary is about $472,000.

Westmoreland, which owns three coal mines in Montana, and another in Wyoming, filed for bankruptcy Oct. 9 citing a debt load of $1.4 billion.

In a written statement, Westmoreland’s interim CEO, Michael Hutchinson, praised Kohn for his leadership during the bankruptcy and stated the company remains prepared for restructuring at the beginning of next year.

Reporting by Jay Kohn, Q2 News