USCJ Dues Restructuring

Information on Proposed New Dues System

As published on the USCJ website

At 1 p.m. on March 9, 2014, USCJ kehillot will vote on a proposed new dues system based on a percent of synagogue operating revenues rather than number of family units. The rate would be set at 2.25 percent. Based on kehilla feedback, this proposal has been SIGNIFICANTLY REVISED since first presented at the General Assembly of Kehillot in October 2013.

New Method for Calculating Revenues: The method for calculating operating revenues now uses NET revenues from certain programs, such as preschools and fundraising events like dinners and galas. Click here to see a detailed explanation of the revised method for calculating operating revenues.

Get the Details: View a detailed PowerPoint about the plan, plus FAQs.

Calculate Your Estimated Dues: Click here for a worksheet to estimate your dues under the proposed new system.

To vote on the proposal: Your kehilla president or highest ranking officer must register a representative to the General Assembly of Kehillot NO LATER THAN January 31, 2014. To register, click here. See full instructions on registering for the GA below.

Learn More: Listen to two webinars on the dues proposal.

You can register for the webinars by clicking here.

Important Things To Know

  • The revised proposal calculates operating revenues differently. For programs such as preschool or fundraisers like galas and dinner dances, you would count NET, not gross, revenue.
  • We believe the new system would be fairer to all kehillot, offering a more accurate measure of their financial health.
  • The proposal, at 2.25 percent of operating revenues, is NOT designed to raise the total amount of dues collected by USCJ. Hence it is described as “revenue neutral.”
  • We expect that most kehillot will see their dues remain stable. And we will cap the size of any increases or decreases over prior years at 10 percent for the first three years of implementing the new plan.
  • Make sure to compare your estimated dues for next year to your full dues bill for this year – not to what you paid after receiving a variance.
  • There will still be a variance process under the new system.
  • The new method would do away with any district “add-ons” currently in effect.

The new dues system is the culmination of 18 months of analysis of USCJ’s dues structure by professionals and lay leaders from both USCJ and our kehillot. Creating a fairer dues system was mandated in the Strategic Plan adopted in 2011.

At the October 2013 meeting of the General Assembly of Kehillot (GA) held in Baltimore, the leadership of USCJ presented a preliminary dues restructuring initiative for review and comment by our congregations. After extensive feedback from our members – through Webinars, emails, focus groups, and conversations – substantial changes were made to the original plan.

Based on those comments and feedback, at its meeting on December 22, the USCJ board unanimously approved sending the new dues plan to the General Assembly of Kehillot for a vote.

Instructions on Registering for the General Assembly of Kehillot

The General Assembly of Kehillot will meet on Sunday, March 9, 2014, at 1 p.m. in New York City, either at the United Synagogue offices or a location to be announced. Registered kehilla representatives may participate either in person or online via Webex. The deadline for registering is January 31, 2014.

Each affiliated kehilla in good standing may appoint its own voting representative to the General Assembly of Kehillot. Representatives may be a kehilla lay leader or professional… it’s your choice. Your kehilla president (or highest ranking officer) designates one person who will act at the chair of your kehilla’s delegation with the authority to speak and vote on its behalf.

Because we recently asked you to register for the Annual Meeting of the General Assembly of Kehillot that took place on October 13, 2013 in Baltimore, there will be no need for you to do so again as long as you intend to have the same person act as your kehilla’s representative (and the chair of your delegation). We will just continue to use that same information. However, if you did not register for the October meeting or should you wish to change your representative to the March 9, 2014 meeting, you will need to complete a new registration form NO LATER THAN January 31, 2014.

In that case, please click here to complete an online form to designate your kehilla’s representative and membership. Because a vote on the dues proposal will take place at this meeting, the size of your kehilla membership will determine the number of proportional votes your congregation will have. In order to receive the correct number of votes, your kehilla president should be sure to complete the box on the registration form asking for the number of member units (families) at your kehilla.

If you choose to participate in the GA online, information on how to log in to the meeting will be emailed to you prior to the event.