This excerpt taken from the VZ DEF 14A filed Mar 23, 2009.
Payment of Awards
In determining whether and to what extent awards will be paid to participants, and in exercising its negative discretion to reduce the maximum award for any participant, the Committee will consider factors that it deems appropriate, including Verizons financial and operating performance for the plan year, the performance of the participants business unit and the participants achievement in relation to established measures.
All awards will be paid in cash. Participants are permitted to defer payment of all or a portion of their awards, subject to any conditions imposed by the Committee and subject to any restrictions under Section 409A of the Code and the terms of the applicable deferred compensation plan.
The Committee has not made any awards under the 2009 STIP. Because the Committee annually determines whether to grant awards and the amount of the awards to be made to any one individual or group of individuals based on the Companys performance, it is not possible to determine the amount of awards or the individuals or group of individuals who will receive awards under the 2009 STIP. If the 2009 STIP had been in effect in 2008, the award pool would have totaled $250 million.