Former J&J CEO and chairman Bill Weldon gets $29.8 million for 2012

Former Johnson & Johnson chief Bill Weldon will get $29.8 million for 2012, according to documents filed by the company with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The health-care giant published its 2012 annual report Wednesday and filed a proxy statement with the SEC. A link to the SEC filing is here.

J&J sells prescription medicine, medical devices and over-the-counter medicine. It is based in New Brunswick, N.J., and has operations around Philadelphia.

The chart on total compensation - which includes salary, stock options and deferred pension contributions - says Weldon will make $29,838,259 for the year.

Weldon retired as chief executive officer on April 26 and then as chairman of the board on Dec. 28, 2012.

Weldon's compensation of $29.8 million increased from 2011, when he made a mere $26,797,939 million.

Alex Gorsky replaced Weldon as CEO and then as board chairman.

Gorsky made $10,977,109 in total compensation in 2012, a bump from $6,836,860 in 2011.

Shareholders vote on executive compensation at the annual meeting, but the company recommends they vote in favor of the packages. Shareholders fighting such pay face long odds in most similar situations.

Perhaps not surprisingly, one of the shareholder proposals suggested for this year's annual meeting seeks to separate the job of CEO and board chairman. Perhaps not surprisingly, the company does not like the idea.

Meanwhile, as colleague Jane Von Bergen wrote in Wednesday's Inquirer (link here), taxpayers will pay New Jersey companies to re-train and hire pharmaceutical workers laid off by their companies.

The state program is funded by taxpayers via a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, according to the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. The state agency press release (link here), says in part, "New Jersey applied for the grant to keep the state’s pharmaceutical talent in the state and maintain New Jersey’s economic competitiveness. The workers covered under the grant include those who were displaced from approved locations of Bristol-Myers Squibb, Hoffman-La Roche, Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co., and Pfizer companies."