Wednesday, March 10, 2021
APFA Annual Convention: Financial Reform Initiative
This week, we concluded the APFA Annual Convention in DFW. Due to the pandemic, attendance was limited to your National Officers and Base Presidents. The meeting’s final agenda may be found here, and the minutes of the meeting, along with all of the final resolutions, will be published within thirty (30) days per APFA Policy Manual Section 4.A.7.b.(3).
One of this administration’s main goals is to ensure APFA’s financial health and achieve full transparency. Your dues dollars run our Union, and fiscal responsibility must be at the forefront of all we do. Being fiscally responsible, reigning in spending, and operating within allocated budgets is what you expect from us. You have a right to know how all of your dues dollars are being spent.
Over the past few years, members have filed charges under the Article VII process, and many of these charges have been related to our Union’s financial dealings. Members have conducted audits of APFA’s financials. In most cases, transparency in our spending is the main issue for filing charges. Thank you to those members who demand accountability. We have worked closely with the Board of Directors to address shortcomings within the APFA Policy Manual.
We have reviewed the APFA Policy Manual and identified areas that need updating or clarification, especially when the sections relate to APFA’s finances and transparency. At this meeting, we introduced seven (7) resolutions that either further defined or created new policies pertaining to spending by APFA Officers and Representatives. You will be pleased to know that all seven of these resolutions passed unanimously by the Board of Directors.
Some highlights of the seven resolutions related to financial reform include:
Resolution #8- APFA Issued Credit Cards creates a new section 5.L in the Policy Manual and limits APFA credit card usage to National Officers. It also requires accountability by ensuring that another National Officer has to sign off on charges, requires strict documentation of all charges, and implements twice-yearly reviews of credit card activity by the Budget Committee. At least one (1) random audit will be performed by the Budget Committee every six (6) months to ensure proper spending, and training on the policy will be required by all incoming National Officers.
Resolution #9- APFA Apartments puts more stringent guidelines on spending and inventory for APFA provided apartments. The Budget Committee shall maintain a table of the approved costs for purchasing new or replacement items. It adds a new inventory system to track all items belonging to APFA.
Resolution #10- Business Related Meals adds policy for group meals ensures compliance with the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA) regarding meals purchased using an APFA credit card. All meal charges must be accompanied by a written explanation of the specific Union business conducted during the meal and the full names and titles of all attendees.
Resolution #11- Rental Car Policy & APFA Provided Transportation adds language that any APFA Representative on Union business in DFW should make every effort to utilize APFA-owned vehicles before using a taxi, rental cars, or other paid forms of transportation. This resolution also revises, further defines, and limits APFA Policy Manual Section 5.H.4 by limiting rental car usage by incoming National Officers to thirty (30) days, except in extenuating circumstances and only upon approval from the APFA Executive Committee.
Resolution #12- National Officer Relocation updates the amount allowed for a National Officer to move to DFW. Instead of offering $10,000 round trip for a move to DFW, the Budget Committee shall maintain a table of approved relocation costs. Relocation reimbursement may be provided in accordance with the table.
This resolution also limits the time in which a National Officer must decide to move to DFW or take an APFA provided apartment. This change allows the National Officer three (3) months from the election date to make their decision.
This resolution also limits the amount of time a National Officer may reside in a hotel while deciding to move to DFW or take an APFA apartment. If a National Officer elects to live in an APFA apartment while in DFW, they will not be paid moving expenses if they suddenly change their mind and decide to relocate to DFW.
Resolution #13- Collection of Non-Dues Related Monies Owed by APFA Representatives adds a new section to the APFA Policy Manual, Section 7.J. It states that Representatives owing non-dues related monies to APFA will receive written notification from the National Treasurer, and ensures payment or a payment plan within thirty (30) days of receipt of such notification. If no payment is received, the monies will be sent to a collection agency.
Resolution #14- Resignation or Recall of a National Officer adds new language. Before this resolution, APFA had no written policy or procedure outlining pay and benefits for a resigning or recalled National Officer. This resolution adds a new Section 6.E to the APFA Policy Manual outlining the pay and benefits for a resigning or recalled National Officer and will remove the possibility of any future National Officer exit agreements.
Look for the full meeting minutes and all of the resolutions from the Convention within thirty days. The implementation of these policies ensures the responsible use of your Union dollars and enables our organization to move forward, protect our members, and improve the way we operate.