10Investigates: Huge raise for Tampa International CEO

Mike Deeson considers the compensation of the airport's top official.

TAMPA -- Have you received a raise recently? If you're lucky, you got a three percent bump in salary -- unless,  of course, you are the CEO of Tampa International Airport.

Today, Joe Lopano got an eight percent raise along with several other perks and you help pay for it every time you park at TIA where rates have skyrocketed, doubling in 2013.

When you think of large airports many people think O’Hare in Chicago, JFK in New York, Hartsfield in Atlanta;
But after a substantial raise, Tampa International Airport's CEO makes more.

In fact, Lopano is now the third highest paid airport executive in the country.

On Thursday, the Hillsborough Aviation Authority increased his salary to $394,000 a year; that's an eight percent increase. The public also contributes $53,000 a year to his 401k.

On top of that, his monthly car allowance was doubled to $1,000 a month. And he gets a half-million-dollar bonus in 2018, plus Lopano will then also get another 15 percent raise that year.

Most of us will agree that Tampa International is a great airport and it's easy to navigate, but it is far from the largest in the nation. Actually, it is the smallest of the nation's large airports.

Today the board passed Lopano's raise without any discussion.

He now makes more than Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Governor Rick Scott combined. Lopano was hired in 2011 for $250,000.


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