Dues News

As we reflect on the past year, we can only imagine how much better things would have gone for ourselves and our country if we weren’t mired in such a dismal economic state. We’ve all felt the pain, some of us more so than others. As 2010 approaches, we all hope this situation will continue to improve, with some of the recent economic indicators suggesting that we are recovering.

This past year was a difficult one for the AVMA financially, as I’m sure it was for many of you as well. When the AVMA Executive Board approved our 2009 budget, we did so knowing that cost containment and reduction were critical to improving our financial condition. The Board was also confident that we could turn things around through continued financial responsibility and good management.

While our deficit has shrunk considerably because of these efforts, things are still tight. As we began the 2010 budget process, the tone hadn’t changed much from the previous year. So we pinched. We cut. And we used considerable constraint in formulating responsible budget plans for 2010. It was a painstakingly thorough process, with the emphasis much of the time on the “pain.”

While we believed that our cost-cutting efforts would go a long way toward steering us into brighter economic times, the Board soon came to realize that just wasn’t going to be enough. We would have to make the difficult decision of proposing a 2011 dues increase to our House of Delegates. Dr. DeHaven and I would like to explain why.

Increasing our revenues will enable the AVMA to continue to achieve excellence in the areas you expect, most notably our scientific journals, educational accreditation and certification, convention management, scientific activities and the overall management of member services.

The additional revenue we realize from the proposed dues increase will also enable the AVMA to achieve its strategic goals and advance our leadership nationally and internationally in the areas of advocacy, animal welfare and veterinary education. It will also allow us to effectively address the critical issues facing veterinary medicine regarding our workforce and our economic viability.

Finally, the additional revenue is necessary to maintain the financial reserves of the association, which have been significantly depleted due to the state of our economy. It is vital that we maintain an appropriate reserve balance so we are prepared for unforeseen economic challenges to the association and the profession in years to come.

 Raising dues is never easy, and asking you to contribute more in these times puts some added burden on you financially. We understand that, and we want to hear your thoughts. Your House of Delegates representative wants your input on the proposed increase, and we urge you to contact your state VMA or constituent allied organization to share your thoughts and concerns.

12 thoughts on “Dues News

  1. Hi Ingrid,
    This is your long lost best friend, Daphne Knox. I found you by accident as I was searching for information on finding a job as a vet tech or vet asst. I would like to do something different. I have been working with my own four dogs for several years now. I am still teaching Spanish. I live in Georgia now. Please call me at 706-601-3541.I would love to talk about our love for animals, since we were teens. Remember?
    Love,
    Daphne
    @Dr. Ingrid Oakley

  2. All I can say….I’m inching closer and closer to not being a member. From AVMA, state VMA, county VMA, plus any personal interest vet groups…the dues are adding up. I have to question, “what am I REALLY getting for my money?”

  3. I strongly suggest that the AVMA go to publishing the 2 associated journals, i.e., JAVMA and JAVMR electonically and reduce the cost of printing, mailing and iy would be more environmentally beneficial. Many other major medical jouranls have adopted this format.

    It would also encourage our membership to fully embrace the technological age. Thank you for the opportunity to express this opinion.
    John Poe, Midway, Kentucky

  4. It’s too bad that raising dues is the track the org is chosing to take. This increase in ‘overhead’ will passed on to pet owners,making it that much more difficult for them to afford care. They are the only ones who aren’t getting an influx of income.

  5. As an owner of a veterinary practice I know how costs are going up and how difficult it is to contain costs; we’re all learning/trying to cut back, do without, or pay more for what we are accustomed to having. Is AVMA doing the same? I’m certain that a lot of money has been saved by not having a printed version of the directory, but how many millions of dollars are being spent on other things that may not be necessary. AVMA recently purchased and fixed up a building in Washington D.C. to house their governmental relations bureau. The AVMA is also boasting that the recently-remodeled headquarters is EPA-recognized for it’s energy-efficiency. While it’s great that the AVMA is reducing its “carbon footprint”, could these recent construction projects have been done in a more cost-effective manner? This was, after all, paid for in part by our dues.

  6. We’re counting every penny. The dues are already quite expensive. AVMA may end up with a very slanted membership, with only wealthier veterinarians as members. AVMA membership should be affordable.

  7. TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: THE RECESSION IS ONE ISSUE, BUT THERE IS AN OVERSUPPLY OF VETERINARIANS IN COMPANION ANIMAL PRACTICE. NO, ITS NOT YOUR FAULT(YET), BUT IF THIS ISN’T ADDRESSED SOON THERE WILL BE MAJOR RAMNIFICATIONS. PET OWNERSHIP IS SHRINKING YEARLY AND UNIVERSITIES ARE PUMPING OUT VETERINARIANS AS FAST AS THEY CAN TO LINE THEIR COFFERS. THE JOBS THAT AREN’T IN OVERSUPPLY(HOMELAND SECURITY,RURAL ANIMAL) NO ONE WANTS. VETERINARIANS BELIEVE THEIR AVMA DUES SHOULD CONTRIBUTE TO KEEPING THE PROFESSION HEALTHY IN REGARD TO SUPPLY AND DEMAND,IF THIS IS NOT DONE, MANY MEMBERS WILL FEEL BETRAYED AND “JUMP SHIP”.

  8. As an Honor Roll Member….I hate to tell you how long I have been a member of the AVMA…understand that my dues are now waived. And as one who has worked within the leadership in a couple of positions, I understand the weight of a decision to raise the dues. However, I can tell you that I now enjoy more information coming from the AVMA than I ever have. I also understand how extremely important it is to have an organization such as the AVMA to represent our profession in all aspects of society today. It is way more important than when I joined the AVMA some 50 years ago! Therefore, even though I have sent in my “Waived Membership Application”, I will be sending a letter with a check for what the regular dues would have been, and I support the proposed increase in dues even though I am now on somewhat of a fixed income!

  9. I think a dues increase is fine, but I think a discount should be offered to those who renew online decreasing the amount of paper and postage needed.

  10. I have been a member of the AVMA for over 10 years. The only benefit that is tangible for me is JAVMA. If I add all of my AVMA, state, and local dues I spend over $700 in dues alone. This does not even count my license fee. I’m going to have to make some decisions on which organization is the most beneficial to me.

    Ingrid Oakley

  11. To Whom It May Concern:

    I understand your idea that raising the dues may be needed to help with the costs of running the AVMA. Unfortunately I would have to disagree with this as a possible way to increase income. Have you considered how many veterinarians may not renew their membership? I for one would have to seriously consider whether the cost is worth the benefit. There are local dues, state dues, and license fees. Times are very tough business is definately down, please reconsider your proposal.

    Sincerely,
    Kristen Mason