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The cost of opting out
11 November 2005 - Orange County Register

I join Professor Galles in decrying the failure of Prop. 75, and in his optimism for the future of those public employee union members who supported it.

However, Iím a little more cautious in hoping that huge numbers will begin opting out of political contributions, for the simple reason that for just about every public employee union (though not all, I've been informed) opting out means becoming an "agency fee payer". This entails essentially becoming a non-member, but still paying the rest of oneís union dues and still being subject to the terms of the contract, while losing one's vote on union leadership and collective bargaining issues - the very thing an employee is ostensibly paying his dues for in the first place.

The act of opting out may or may not be considered "easy", but its ease or difficulty says nothing about the costs, hidden and otherwise, of actually opting out.

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