Billion Year Contract

Over at the Center of the American Experiment, Tom Steward draws our attention to the latest effort of Education Minnesota to stave off the potential loss of thousands of members if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down agency fee laws.

Down at the bottom of the union’s 2017-18 membership application, in small print and grayed out, is the usual authorization to allow the school district to deduct union dues from the teacher’s paycheck, but with an added twist:

This authorization shall remain in effect and shall be automatically renewed from year to year, irrespective of my membership in the union, unless I revoke it by submitting written notice to both my employer and the local union during the seven-day period that begins on September 24 and ends on September 30.

“Irrespective of my membership in the union.” This is a brazen attempt at collecting agency fees even if agency fee laws disappear. Actually, it’s worse than that because, as the fine print tells us, “Your dues include $25 per year for the Education Minnesota PAC.”

Agency fee law or not, no union member anywhere is required to contribute to the union’s PAC. But getting your money back won’t be easy. You have to email or hand deliver “a signed original request form” within 30 days of signing the membership application.

Where do you get the request form? You have to phone Education Minnesota’s headquarters to find out.

These types of tactics are vulnerable to court challenges, but someone still has to initiate the legal process to put an end to them. We’ll see this and other assorted trickery in all of the agency fee states.