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November 12, 2012

1)  Five of Eight Largest Teacher Union Locals Had Budget Deficits. An Education Intelligence Agency analysis of 2010-11 Internal Revenue Service filings reveals five of the eight largest teacher union local affiliates in the nation operated with budget deficits. Half of the 36 largest locals saw their dues revenue decrease from the previous year.

Most of these locals are either affiliates of the American Federation of Teachers, or jointly affiliated with AFT and the National Education Association. AFT's governance structure is largely centered on its locals, just as NEA's is centered on its state affiliates, which had their own financial troubles. The largest teachers' union local in the U.S., the United Federation of Teachers in New York City, accumulated dues revenue of $125.5 million in 2010-11, but still ran an $11.8 million deficit due to a 12.1% increase in employee compensation costs.

The United Teachers Los Angeles, United Teachers of Dade, Broward Teachers Union, and United Educators of San Francisco were the other four top locals to experience deficits.

Other locals may have been in the black but are still on shaky ground. Figures for the Washington Teachers Union for 2010-11 were unavailable, while the Detroit Federation of Teachers' small surplus did not cover the $1.4 million it still owed AFT.

Just like NEA's state affiliates, a number of locals were able to achieve pension liability relief to improve their bottom lines. But high personnel costs continue to worry many locals.

EIA has posted a table on its web site listing the dues revenue of the 36 largest locals, along with their other revenues, number of employees, their total compensation, and their budget deficit status.

2)  Last Week's Intercepts. EIA's blog, Intercepts, covered these topics from November 6-12:

*  Teachers' Unions Win a Defensive Victory. Four more years.

Gravy Train Drying Up for NEA's Favorite Advocacy Groups? Play for pay.

Heading for the Hills in California. The two states of California, but one is a permanent minority.

Call Me Maybe. Two-way spam?

Eat Your Vegetables! Voting scolds.

3)  Quote of the Week. "We have the capacity to rebuild this state." - Dean Vogel, president of the California Teachers Association, commenting on the results of Tuesday's election. (November 8 Reuters)


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