ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP – DUES

 Section 1.     The Association shall have three (3) classifications of membership:

                        Active, Associate, and Pre-retirement.

  1. Active: Any retired certified staff member of a public or private school, college, or university, or the annuitant spouse of a deceased annuitant shall be eligible as an Active member with full membership privileges.

 Proposed Amendment:  Active:  Any TRS annuitant or the annuitant spouse of a deceased annuitant shall be eligible as an Active Member with full membership privileges.

Rationale:  The purpose of IRTA is “to maintain and improve benefits to annuitants of TRS”.  Private school, college, and university certified staff members are not annuitants of the Teachers Retirement System (TRS) of Illinois.  Therefore, these named groups technically do not qualify for IRTA Active Membership with full membership privileges.

This group of individuals would not have the same vested interest in retiree benefits.  These potential members would more appropriately be classified as Associate Members, and as such would be whole heartedly encouraged to join.  This change would also eliminate the possibility of a non-TRS annuitant becoming an officer of the organization.  It would also eliminate their voting rights, thus eradicating any potential influences not consistent with the intents of the association.

Current IRTA members who may be affected by this change will still be able to maintain their Active membership because of the following:

Section 3. Any current Active member who does not meet the requirements of Section 1. A. above may continue Active membership.

Presented by the IRTA Constitution Committee

 

            ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP – DUES

 Section 1.     The Association shall have three (3) classifications of membership:

                        Active, Associate, and Pre-retirement.

  1. Associate: Any other person interested in education and approved for membership by any local unit of IRTA shall be eligible as an Associate member without the right to vote or hold office.

 Proposed Amendment:  Associate:  Any person interested in education and approved for membership by the state association, Illinois Retired Teachers Association (IRTA), or any local unit of IRTA, shall be eligible as an Associate members without the right to vote or hold office.

Rationale:  The word “other” seems redundant.

Rationale for addition of “the state association, Illinois Retired Teachers Association (IRTA), or”:  Some individuals wishing to join IRTA are not members of, or known by, local RTAs.  Membership needs to be open to anyone who agrees and sympathizes with IRTA’s purpose and mission, and desires and requests to join the organization because of that common interest.

Presented by the IRTA Constitution Committee

ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP – DUES

             Section 1.     The Association shall have three (3) classifications of membership:

                        Active, Associate, and Pre-retirement.

 Pre-retirement: Any certified Illinois public or private school staff member shall be eligible as a Pre-retirement member with full membership privileges.

 Proposed Amendment:  Any certified Illinois public school staff member shall be eligible as a Pre-retirement member without the right to vote or hold office.

Rationale:  Full membership should not be given to pre-retirement members as they are not yet receiving an annuity from TRS.  These individuals should have the same status as Associate IRTA members until the actual date of their retirement.   This change would coincide with the time when they begin paying for their IRTA membership and thus have a different investment in the organization.

This change would eliminate the possibility of any non-TRS annuitant becoming an officer of the organization.  It would also eliminate their voting rights, thus eradicating any potential influences not consistent with the intents of the association.

Current IRTA members who may be affected by this change will still be able to maintain their Active membership because of the following:

Section 3.  Any current Active member who does not meet the requirements of Section 1.A. above may continue Active membership.

Presented by the IRTA Constitution Committee

 

ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP – DUES

 Section 4.  The Annual, Dues Deduct, and Life Active membership dues and the Associate membership dues shall be determined by the delegate assembly.

 Proposed Amendment:  Any proposal to increase the Annual, Dues Deduct, and Life Active membership dues and the Associate membership dues must be reviewed by the Membership Committee before it can be presented to the delegate assembly in convention.

The results of the Membership Committee review shall be presented to the delegate assembly also with the proposed increase.

Section 5.  The Annual, Dues Deduct, and Life Active membership dues and the Associate membership dues shall be determined by the delegate assembly.

Rationale:  The members of the West Lake Shore Executive Board and the WLSU membership propose the above amendment because they feel the members of the Membership Committee know full well the task of recruiting and maintaining members at the local level.  With the input of the Executive Committee, they can fully discuss the need for an increase and an amount which would not a burden on local recruitment efforts.

The delegate assembly would benefit from learning of the Membership Committee review in determining the proposed increase.

Presented by the West Lake Shore Executive Board and Membership

 

ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP – DUES

             Proposed Amendment:  On January 1, 2018, annual membership will no longer be             offered to retired educators who retired after December 31, 2017.

Rationale:  In attempting to reduce the number of state membership non-renewals and to free up time for the Springfield IRTA staff to devote to endeavors other than renewal efforts, both the State Membership Committee and the State Board of Directors have voted to recommend to the 2017 delegate assembly that the category of annual membership at $40.00 of dues per year be removed as a membership option for any new members to the IRTA as of January 1, 2018.  Remaining the same are the other levels of membership; dues deduct, five year, life, and recurring annual.  In no way does this change affect any current members.  The reasons for this proposed change are:

  1. As of April 19, 2017 there had been 742 membership non-renewals from 2016. The majority of those non-renewals were free and annual memberships.
  2. Of those 742 non-renewals only 7 were dues deduct members
  3. In previous years there had been at minimum 400 to 500 non-renewals, the majority of which are free and annual memberships.
  4. In order to convince annual members to send $40.00 to the IRTA each year the office staff spends a significant amount of time and money by doing the following:
  5. Mailings are created, printed, and sent out (November, January, and February).
  6. Email notices are written and sent out (October, January, and March).
  7. A robocall was written, recorded, and sent out in January.
  8. Lists of non-renewals are created and sent out to unit membership chairs with a request that those non-renewing members be contacted with a request to send in the $40.00 dues.
  9. Should new members as of January, 2018 be given the options of only joining as dues deduct, five year, life, or annual recurring eventually there will be no need to spend the time and money to convince annual members to renew.
  10. Now is a good time to take such a step since membership is trending away from annual memberships.
  11. As of April 12, 2017, of the 36,995 IRTA members, only 3,913 were annual members, or 10.6% of the total. Of those same members 22,245 were dues deduct members, or 60% of the total.
  12. As of May 16, 2017, of the 852 newly recruited members only 161 were annual members, or 19% of the total. Of those same new members, 552 were dues deduct, or 64.7% of the total.
  13. Dues deduct is a more likely choice since most retirees are used to having their association or federation dues deducted from their pay by their school districts while they were active teachers.
  14. Newer retirees in the years going forward will likely trend toward the use of recurring annual memberships as many more people are taking advantage of giving out their credit card and Pay Pal accounts and not having to worry about making monthly or yearly payments by check.
  15. In the past two years the IRTA has made it easier than ever to become a dues deduct and recurring annual member through the use of the association’s website.
  16. If new members prefer to join for only a certain number of years that is still an option with three of the remaining four types of memberships available to retired educators.

Presented by the IRTA Board of Directors and the IRTA Membership Committee

 

ARTICLE VI – MEETINGS

 Section 2.  Conferences, at least one per area, coordinated by the Vice-President and planned by each Area Representative, shall be held annually for the purpose of leadership training and transmitting Association information. Additional workshops and/or conferences may be held by areas, subject to approval of the Board of Directors, for the purpose of addressing particular needs or actions of the Association.

Proposed Amendment:  Conferences shall be held annually for the purpose of transmitting Association information and providing leadership training for local units. These conferences are to be planned and coordinated by the IRTA Office Staff, with input from IRTA Area Representatives and Regional Directors. The location and number of the conferences will be contingent upon the most productive way to disseminate information and provide training correlated to the agenda. There is to be at least one conference per area or per region, subject to approval of the Board of Directors, for the purpose of addressing specific needs or actions deemed essential and beneficial to the Association.

Rationale:  IRTA continues to evolve to meet the ever-changing needs of the association.  There needs to be a relevant and variable procedure in place that allows the organization to respond appropriately to needed changes to keep our organization strong – both at the state and local levels.  The purpose of the conferences would remain the same:  “leadership training and transmitting Association information”.  However, how that is implemented in any given year will be driven by best practices for the dissemination of a specific and beneficial agenda for our members and attendees.

Presented by the IRTA Constitution Committee

 

ANNUAL ASSOCIATE MEMBERSHIP PROPOSAL:

 Whereas, associate membership dues have been $25 since 2007;

Whereas, the cost to serve associate members has continued to rise;

Whereas, annual and recurring membership dues are $40;

Whereas, associate member enjoy all of the same benefits of membership except that they do not have the right to vote as delegates to IRTA conventions;

Whereas, far too many non-retired educators join as associates in order to have access to IRTA endorsed benefits yet do not continue their memberships while maintaining those benefits;

Therefore Be It Resolved that beginning January 2018 associate annual membership dues will be increased to $40.

Presented by the IRTA Membership Committee and the IRTA Board of Directors.