Ohio Education Association (OEA) membership declined by 2,286 in the union’s 2013 fiscal year, but the average OEA employee was still paid more than $100,000. During the past decade, the average pay of OEA officers and staff increased by 26 percent while the union lost 9 percent of its members.
OEA has shed 11,182 members since 2004, reporting membership of 131,000 in its 2004 annual filing with the U.S. Department of Labor and 119,818 for the fiscal year ending August 31, 2013.
The union collected $54.9 million in dues and “fair share” fees in 2013, down from $58.4 million the year before.
OEA’s downward membership trend, caused largely by decades of last-in-first-out firing policies and seniority-based pay demanded by the union itself, hasn’t put a dent in the affluence of union leaders paid with members’ dues.
Despite the latest drop in membership, OEA officers and employees were paid an average of $100,435 — a decrease of just $118 from 2012.
In 2004, OEA employees and officers were paid an average of $79,750.
Average pay listed above includes base salary plus reimbursements, and does not include insurance or retirement benefits.
Public teachers across Ohio are forced to pay OEA hundreds of dollars per year. Regular dues for the current school year are $501, and teachers who decline union membership are typically required to pay “fair share” fees of more than $400.
A class-action settlement is pending as a result of a complaint brought by teachers who opted out of OEA membership and assert that their mandatory dues have been used by the union for organizing, political, and public relations purposes.