Thursday, December 03, 2009

Agency Fee Rebate

Today I received my agency fee rebate from the CTA. The agency fee rebate is the amount of money that the NEA/CTA/local union admit they spent on activities not related to collective bargaining (e.g., politics) and must refund to those of us who are not union members but are still required by state law to pay a union. This is called a "fair share" situation, wherein we non-union types are compelled to pay our "fair share" for union representation that we don't want; other states are considered "right to work" states, wherein employees have a "right to work" free of compulsory union payments.

My rebate check was in excess of $300, or 1/3 of my annual union dues. Yes, I pay about $1000/year for union representation that I do not want.

That $1000 is divvied up among the NEA, the CTA, and my local union. The following are the rebate percentages for each level for this school year:

NEA: 55% rebate (that means that the NEA spends over half of its money on activities not related to employee representation)
CTA and local union: 28.6% rebate

Additionally, most CTA members don't know that they're "voluntarily" donating $20/year to CTA's political action fund, and can opt out of that "donation" if they wish. It's an "opt out" situation, and CTA rightly figures that most teachers won't go through the hassle. CTA thereby gets an additional $20/year per member to spend on far-left-wing political causes. My rebate check includes the $20 "voluntary dues contribution".


Treehopper said...

I'm semi new to your powerful blog and am lazy to look through the hundreds of posts you have written, but I have a question for you.

Before you left the union, did you try to rise in the ranks to affect change from within? This is the stage I'm at. I'm rising the ranks to see if I can have any influence on the socialist nonsense I see within my own Union Trinity.

It could be a lost cause, and I'll probably end up just resigning from the union as you had.

Any advise?

Darren said...

I was a site rep. The major problems aren't at the local level, though--they're at the state and national levels. And the higher up you go, the more fever swamp leftie the people get. While trying to effect change from within is a noble goal, it's not very likely, IMNSHO.

Treehopper said...

I would love to send you a report I wrote up for my staff after I attended the NEA RA as a delegate in San Diego this past Summer.

Your email link is not popping up. If you don't mind, let me have your email and I would like to send it on over.


Darren said...

My email is the same as my yahoo ID in my profile, just add at the end.

Anonymous said...

I think the practice of garnishing union dues - of any and all kinds- should be illegal. Everyone should be required to write out their own check. I think Oregon tried that and union membership dropped like a rock.

Norma said...

I've never been a union member but I think paying $1,000 a year to be a non-member is just outrageous. Rebate or not.

EdD said...

Why do teachers think they need a union anyway? Doctors, lawyers and other educated professionals don't
belong to unions. (Don't tell me about the AMA or the state bar; those are regulated monopolies, entirely different entities). If
teachers ditched their state NEA affiliates and the NEA itself, and
formed local only associations, they would have just as much if not more influence in their districts, have greater control over their organization, be able to get much better professional liability insurance and pay much
less in dues.

Darren said...

Most teachers are sheeple and like the protection of the herd that the union provides. And I've *long* advocated for local-only unions--for just the reasons that EdD promulgated.

allen (in Michigan) said...

It's not a matter of what teachers think they need but of what the situation is.

Teachers may like to think of themselves as professionals but in terms of employment situation of most teachers, they're treated much more like automobile assembly line workers - interchangeable.

Until the relatively recent advent of legislatively-drawn distinctions between special ed teachers and the rest of the profession it was not unusual to find any handy teacher plugged into any classroom in need of a teacher with zero regard to the teacher's abilities. From the point of view of the administration it was more important to have a warm body in the classroom then to make sure teaching occurred. After all, there were legal requirements that have to be met and determining whether a teacher is in the classroom is easy. Whether the teacher could teach the class, or any class, was a distinctly secondary concern.

It's that interchangeability that's the key factor in the unionization of the profession. There are other important factors such as the school district which allows for economically organizing teachers but without the real or effective interchangeability of teachers union organization efforts would be impossible.

Ellen K said...

In a way, all teachers pay something to someone just to have liability insurance. It's the biproduct of our litigious culture. On the other hand, the president's recent "jobs summit" excluded representatives of business and included organized labor leaders. This tells me that the days of living in a right to work state where unions don't provide additional cost burdens to goods and services may be over. There was a time and place for unions, but when was the last time you saw any major news outlet reveal what their lobbyists and leaders make in comparison to the rank and file?

Clix said...

I liked this post and chose to include it in this week's EduCarnival. If you would like to have it removed, please email me at uncomfortableadventures (at) yahoo (dot) com to let me know, and I will delete the link.

You can submit an article to the next issue of EduCarnival v2 by using the handy-dandy carnival submission form. Past carnivals and future scheduled editions can be found on the blog carnival index page.

I love getting to read posts from people I'm not familiar with, so it'd be awesome if you'd put up a quick note encouraging your readers to submit as well!

Anonymous said...

How does one find a list of:

"religious bod[ies] whose traditional tenets or teachings include objections to joining or financially supporting employee organizations"

Darren said...

It's not up to the state or CTA to decide what your religious beliefs are. Additionally, it's enough that your beliefs are antithetical to the union--eg, you are pro-life.