By Clarion Staff



MAY 2001

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On May 7, after weeks of study and discussion, the PSC Finance Committee finalized a proposal to restructure full-time dues to create a more equitable system.   Treasurer John Hyland said, “I am confident our proposal is fairer for most members and fiscally responsible for the union.”

Following a change in the part-time dues structure from a flat rate to 1% in February, the Delegate Assembly asked the Finance Committee to study the feasibility of moving from a flat rate to a percentage rate for full-timers as well.  Those supporting the move argued that a percentage rate is intrinsically fairer than a flat rate, and noted that many unions have adopted percentage-based dues for greater equity among members. The Delegate Assembly authorized the Finance Committee to develop a proposal for a full-time dues rate between 1% and 1.1%, the figures that emerged from a preliminary analysis.

Representatives of both Cross Campus Chapters urged the union to make the change in time to take effect during the next academic year, because many of their members will see a reduction of up to a third in their dues. “I am wholeheartedly in favor of it,” commented Bob Wurman, a chief CLT at Queens College and a member of the Finance Committee. “This is something that CLTs have been wishing we had for 15 or 20 years—and most of the people covered by the PSC would pay less than before.”

The proposal is a 1.05% dues rate for full-time members, based on gross income.  The full-time agency fee rate will also change, but the retiree dues rate will NOT change.  “This proposal is as close to revenue-neutral as we could get while preserving the integrity of the union’s budget,” said Finance Committee member Bob Cermele, “since we know NYSUT and AFT payments are going up, and other costs will rise.”

First Vice President Steve London analyzed two different full-time employee data-sets to develop revenue estimates and worked on expenditure projections with Executive Director Deborah Bell and Treasurer Hyland.  “If the delegates want to make a change for full-timers, we have a window of opportunity this summer,” said London. “This is because part-time dues are being changed, and city and state payroll officers say that changing the dues structure for check-off is such a big programming task that they will not assign staff to do it more than once in the foreseeable future.”

Two public meetings of the Finance Committee are scheduled so members can learn more, ask questions, and express their points of view.  Both will be held at the CUNY Graduate Center, 34th Street and 5th Avenue.

The first is on Wednesday, May 16, 5:30-7:30 pm. The second is on Thursday, May 24, 5-7 pm in Rooms 9204-06.

A discussion board has been set up on the PSC website; look for the link at: “We hope members will use the website and the meetings to let us know what they think about the proposal,” said Hyland. “A special meeting of the Delegate Assembly is scheduled for June 14th to vote on it.”

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