Understanding "Fair Share"

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"Fair share" refers to a new provision in the contract approved by Unit G and Unit E members in January 2011. Starting July 1st, all unit members will be required to pay either union dues or a service fee, also called a "fair share" fee, to compensate the bargaining unit’s exclusive representative (the Maryland Professional Employee Council (MPEC or AFT Healthcare-Maryland) for its work in negotiating and administering the contract.

 A notice on fair share was mailed on May 31. You can find it on the following websites:








MPEC dues per paycheck: $17.25

AFT Healthcare-Maryland dues per paycheck: $17.50

If you don’t join the union, you will pay a service charge which is the same amount as union membership dues.

MPEC fee: $17.25

HC fee: $17.50

 The service fee is a dollar amount assessed to non-union members who work under a collective bargaining contract that was negotiated by the union, and approved by vote of the entire unit. The service fee helps to cover the work that the union does for the unit such as negotiating and administering the contract and handling grievances.

For more information about service fees, go to the Maryland Dept. of Budget and Management website; click on the tab, "State Employees"; find "Quick Links" and click on "Service Fee Information." The website address is:


 The fair share provision was explained in two places in a January 2011 mailing that went by U.S. mail to all members of Unit G, the Engineering, Scientific and Administrative personnel of the state of Maryland and Unit E healthcare workers. It was 1) described in the cover letter to the contract and ballot, and 2) explained in detail within the contract. Members then had the opportunity to vote on the contract by mail.

 When the ballots were counted, the contract proved to be very popular. More than 80 percent of unit members in MPEC approved it; more than 90 percent of AFT Healthcare-Maryland unit members approved it. These votes were not just cast by union members. Everyone in the unit received a ballot and could vote.

 The contract is posted at http://md.aft.org/mpec/ (click on Memorandum of Understanding for FY12).

OR http://dbm.maryland.gov/employees/Documents/CollectiveBargaining/UnitGBargainingAgreement.pdf

This contract is one of the best public employee contracts in the nation, with:



· Reimbursement for furlough days

· A $750 bonus.

· No layoffs and no more furloughs



With public employees under attack all around the country (witness Wisconsin), you can see how extraordinary our contract has proven to be.