NMG officers pass budget, set priorities at annual meeting

News Media Guild officers passed a new budget, strategized on recruiting and other issues, and laid out plans for keeping union-covered staffers more in touch with the Guild’s efforts during their annual meeting.

At the meeting inWashingtonAug. 9-12, the Representative Assembly reviewed the union’s finances and passed a budget totaling $1.02 million for the fiscal year running from October through next September.

The union leadership is positioning for bargaining next summer with The Associated Press. Some of that money comes from our defense and organizing funds, which grow between bargaining periods through deposits from dues. The Editorial and Technology Unit contracts expire on Aug. 31, 2013.

The Executive Committee and RA officers discussed AP’s shrinking work force and staff workload, outsourcing of some photography work traditionally done by union-covered staff and the push to have some employees, including solo correspondents and some technicians, work from home. Officers also discussed general trends within our industry.

AJ Connelly of the AP New York Business News Department met with the EC to discuss her efforts during our spring recruiting campaign. AJ visited 17 bureaus and helped sign up 23 new editorial unit members. There will be a fall recruiting campaign to boost our clout at the bargaining table.

The Representative Assembly, the union’s legislature, re-electedMinneapolisnewsman Steve Karnowski, theMidwestrepresentative, as its chairman. Northeast Representative Mary Esch, a newswoman inAlbany, was re-elected as vice-chairman.