NC controller gives NCAE until Feb. 1 to verify membership
North Carolina's Office of the State Controller is asking the state's largest educators group for information about its membership. A state senator has alleged the group is no longer eligible to have members directly deduct their dues from paychecks.Posted — Updated
"Prior to taking action, I am asking you to provide me or the State Auditor evidence of your membership count and type of membership count to ensure that the NCAE is eligible for the payroll deduction program as outlined by this legislation," Controller Linda Combs wrote to the NCAE.
State law requires that educators groups such as NCAE have more than 40,000 members to be eligible for payroll deductions. The group claims to have more than 70,000 members, but according to a recent audit report, only 9,452 individuals whose payroll or retirement checks are processed by the state automatically pay dues to NCAE.
The teachers' group has tangled with lawmakers since Republicans took control of the General Assembly in 2011. It has been critical of the GOP-led legislature's funding for schools and backed Democratic candidates for office. In 2012, lawmakers returned the favor by holding an unprecedented midnight session to override Gov. Bev Perdue's veto of a bill that would have stopped the state from collecting NCAE dues. The group went to court and won, keeping the right over lawmakers' objections.
In 2015, members of the General Assembly, including Hise, filed a bill to kill payroll deductions for all employee groups, but that measure did not pass.
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