Steve Jobs salary: Still $1, no bonus airplane

Apple’s annual proxy filing landed this morning. You can often find fun tidbits lurking in the fine print of these things — like the year Apple’s board awarded Steve Jobs a “special executive bonus” of a free airplane — so I went poking around.

Nothing that eye-popping this time, sadly: Steve Jobs still gets paid $1 a year, but also holds 5.5 million shares of stock worth a cool $1.8 billion, based on Thursday’s closing price. 

Apple’s #2, Tim Cook, got a $5 million cash bonus plus a “special award” of 75,000 restricted stock shares (vesting over time) in recognition of his “outstanding performance” running the company while Jobs was on medical leave in 2009. That took his total stock and cash compensation in 2010 to a package Apple valued at $59 million — a pretty sweet pickup from the $1.6 million Cook took home the previous year.

(Apple gives its top execs stock awards every two years, so the better base comparison for Cook is 2008. That year, he collected $27 million.)

One fun nugget: Apple’s board studies a group of 18 “peer companies” to help set its own compensation levels. It’s the usual tech-and-media suspects: Google, IBM, HP, Microsoft, Amazon, News Corp., etc. 

But three companies got the boot this year because Apple no longer views them as real rivals: DIRECTV, eBay and Yahoo.

Ouch. I’m guessing Carol Bartz’s response to that would be unprintable. -Stacy

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