Since my last financial update to the membership a lot has changed in our work and personal lives, and in turn the Union will also need to adjust to our current reality. The Component over the past years has come to expect membership growth year-over-year which in turn has fueled revenue growth. As we enter the months ahead, we will need to be more financially prudent. The good news is that over the years the Union has set aside funds for such a scenario which allowed us to offer a two-month dues reduction and will assist us to weather the reduced dues revenue over the next few months.
Component Trustees and Audits
Our external auditors completed their audits on the 2016, 2017, and 2018 Year Ends earlier this year. The Financial Statements were presented to ACCEX by our auditors who joined us at our first Virtual ACCEX Meeting in May. They were subsequently unanimously approved.
The external auditors have also begun work on auditing our 2019 year-end last week and hope to have it completed by the end of July. I feel it is important to have the auditors complete their audit in a timely manner so that any accounting errors can be fixed for the go-forward.
The Component Trustees were on-site in late January to complete their 2015 audit. Unfortunately, they were unable to complete their audit. A new trustee was also acclaimed during this year’s election; however, we were unable to get them trained before the effect of COVID-19 shutdown the economy.
In May 2020, the membership passed a referendum reducing Union Dues to 0.5% of gross earnings for the April 2020 and May 2020 block months. The Component continued to remit per capita to CUPE National and provide full budgets to the Locals during that time. Union dues have returned to 1.5% of gross earnings for the June 2020 block month.
2020-21 Fiscal Budget
Instead of passing a traditional 1-year budget, we decided to pass a 6-month budget for the first half of the year. We will pass a second budget for the second half of the year later, once we have a better understanding of our longer-term membership numbers. In the budgeting process, I tasked each Committee Chair to go through a zero-based budgeting process to help eliminate unnecessary cost and truly justify every expense. At our ACCEX meeting last week, we passed this budget, which saw cuts in every area of our spending except for the Dues we pay to CUPE National, as well as the Local Budgets as these are fixed per-capita costs. The budget does have us dipping into $200,000 of our cash reserves with most of these funds allocated to our Grievance Committee and Health & Safety Committee’s legal costs.
Highest Earner Top-Up
Please see the table below for the highest earner in the bargaining unit for the past six months:
Statement of Operations – July 1 2019 to March 31 2020
Please note that this represents the first three quarters of the last fiscal year and doesn’t yet show the effects of COVID-19 or the two-month dues reduction which will eliminate the surplus shown below.
In conclusion, our members can rest assured we will continue to provide careful oversight on costs and spending. I would especially like to thank our committee members and staff for their ongoing support as we enter this challenging new fiscal year which will require everyone to adapt, and for us to continue to seek the most effective ways of serving you, our members.
Secretary-Treasurer, Air Canada Component of CUPE