It’s all downhill…

images-11.jpgEarlier this week, it was all about duck hunting. But today’s sport is skiing, and specifically the ski lessons and related costs that Vail Resorts (MTN) picked up for CEO Robert Katz, according to the proxy that Vail filed on Friday. (Hat tip to David Milstead of the Rocky Mountain News for finding this first).

As the company notes in footnote #5, “perquisites do not include benefits generally available on a non-discriminatory basis to all or our employees, such as skiing privileges and lodging discounts”. There’s also the SEC rule that doesn’t require a company to disclose anything under $10K. But a few sentences later, the filing goes on to say that “Mr. Katz received $9,057 in lodging and ski school privileges and in discretionary spending on goods and services at our properties for personal use, in accordance with the terms of his employment agreement.” It doesn’t provide details on any of the other top executives, however.

Of course, the detail about skiing privileges not counting as a perk is a new disclosure this year. As the company notes in its filing, a “part of their responsibilities and employment…The program incentivizes the executives to use the Company’s products and services, which the Company believes helps them in their performance by evaluating our resorts and services based upon firsthand knowledge.” Perhaps that’s why in the 2006 proxy, the company didn’t provide similar details.