The AFM’s 95th convention is scheduled to be held at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas on June 23-25. As always a number of bylaw modifications are being proposed. Eighteen of these amendments were submitted by the International Executive Board while 52 are being proposed by various locals, delegates or conferences. The May issue of the International Musician contains a 16-page insert giving the complete text of all the proposed modifications along with a brief synopsis of convention procedures and some definitions of pertinent terminology.
Many of both the IEB’s proposals (called “Recommendations”) and the delegates’ and local officers’ proposals (called “Resolutions”) are concerned with internal union and administrative matters or bylaw language clarifications. Several of them, however, will significantly affect members’ dues obligations or local finances and should be brought to your attention.
Since neither the Local 802 Executive Board nor the membership has considered or discussed any of this, I’ll try to give a brief, hopefully objective summary of the more important proposed amendments.
Recommendation #7 would raise the annual per capita dues (this is the portion of your annual dues that goes to the AFM) from the current $46 for regular members to $50 in 2004, $52 in 2005, $54 in 2006 and $56 in 2007. For honor – or lifetime – members the current $30 per year would increase to $34 in 2004, $36 in 2005, $38 in 2006 and $40 in 2007. A further provision of this recommendation passes these increases directly to the membership in the form of increases in annual dues over the next four years. So that in 2007, should this proposal pass in its submitted form, Local 802 annual dues would be $180 and honor member dues $82, independent of any increase in dues that Local 802 itself might pass.
Two other IEB proposals may be of interest to many of you.
Recommendation #4 would prohibit Federation employees from serving as AFM or local officers or convention delegates.
Recommendation #16 provides for the creation of an “Associate Organization” for former and potential members. I assume this is targeted to retired musicians or very young musicians either of whom may desire some relationship with the union.
DELEGATE, LOCAL OR CONFERENCE RESOLUTIONS
This is a wild, woolly world and I’ll only hit the high spots.
Resolutions #9 and #29 both reapportion the formula for determining the number of Convention delegates per local, although each in its own way.
Resolution #9 would lower the number of members which entitles a local to a delegate or delegates but would retain the current seven delegate cap; it would thereby increase the proportionate floor strength of smaller and medium size locals.
On the other hand, #29 would raise those member numbers and remove the delegate cap. In that way it would increase the proportionate delegate strength of larger locals. However, #29 would also do away with the roll call vote. The roll call vote currently provides that, upon a petition from a certain number of delegates or locals, a vote may take place in which each local is entitled to cast as many votes as it has members. This section of the bylaws was last considered in 1999 when the delegate strength for larger locals was increased. Interestingly, this was done without a roll call vote.
Resolution #47 provides for work dues on Special Payments monies. Twice within the past 10 years this matter has provoked heated convention debate. It is sure to do so again.
Resolution #46 would require work dues payments to be based on earnings of no less an amount than that which is pensionable.
Resolution #48 would increase Federation work dues for symphonic employment from½ percent to 3/4 percent. The proposal contains no pass-through to the membership and would, therefore, increase a local’s symphonic work dues payments to the AFM by 50 percent without providing any new income to the local.
As I mentioned, these are only the highlights; there are many more interesting and entertaining proposals and I urge you to read the IM insert.
The Executive Board will be discussing all this before the convention and most of the June 10 membership meeting will be given over to the same subject.
The Local 802 convention delegates are Tina Hafemeister, Erwin Price, Maura Giannini, Al Hood and myself. No election was held to fill the vacancy caused by the untimely passing of delegate Richard Simon.