Financial statements for the nine months ending September 30, 2003 show that we are still running in a surplus position. On the revenue side, per capita revenue is now running ahead of budget by 1.0%. Revenue as a whole was just under $84 million, which is over budget by $800,000. At the same time, expenditures came in below budget. Total expenditures for the nine-month period were $81.2 million, which was $2.5 million less than the amount predicted in the budget. As a result, we were able to achieve a surplus of $1.9 million for the period in the General Fund, after setting aside $1,125,000 for the Strike Fund Contingency.
Although per capita revenue is now running ahead of budget, we continue to be cautious regarding the outlook for the full year. We will not receive the full revenue budgeted in the 4th quarter of 2003, because we lost thousands of members in Alberta representation votes in October and November. We estimate that this loss of members will cost us $1.5 million a year in revenue.
Spending continued to be restrained in most areas.
The expenditures for operational travel are encouraging as this is the first time we have come in within the budgeted amount. So far, National Office has spent less than budgeted for operational travel while some of the regions are still over budget. We are making progress and we will continue to monitor the situation.
Unfortunately, vacation relief and professional fees in the regions are substantially over budget. We will be working with Regional Directors to try to prevent a reoccurrence of this in 2004.
The General Fund continues to improve with a fund balance (members equity) of $6.3 million, and a solid cash flow that allows us to pay our bills on time. We are creating the strong and stable Fund that CUPE members want and deserve.
National Defence Fund
The National Defence Fund showed a surplus for the first nine months of the fiscal year of just over $1 million. This reflects the fact that expenditures from the Defence Fund are not evenly distributed throughout the year. The summer months, for example, tend to be a relatively quiet period and this summer was no exception, except for the Alberta campaign to win representation votes in the health care sector.
You will note a revenue amount of $189,733 titled Legal Cost Recovery transferred from the General Fund to the National Defence Fund. This amount represents the cash we have received so far from the Ontario government for legal fees recovered as a result of case decisions.
It is worth describing these cases, because they were historic wins for labour and important for the entire country. We won our legal challenge to the privatization of Ontario Hydro and we were reimbursed for costs. The courts agreed that the Ontario government had no mandate to sell off one of the provinces largest public assets. We had launched the case with the Council of Canadians and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union (CEP).
We also won our legal challenge to the Ontario judges case. The Harris government passed legislation enabling them to appoint retired judges, of their choosing, to arbitrate collective agreements in the health care sector. With the help of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), we went to court to protect our right to participate in the selection of arbitrators, and we succeeded.
CUPE, with the help of the Ontario Federation of Labour, the Ontario Public Service Employees Union, the SEIU, the Ontario Nurses Union and the Steelworkers, filed a legal challenge a few years ago on behalf of workers who were being denied proxy pay equity. We negotiated a settlement with the Ontario government this year that included the reimbursement of labours legal costs. Over the next three years the settlement will put $400-million into the pockets of workers, most of whom are in the health care and social services sectors.
In all these cases, the unions involved split the legal fees that were reimbursed. CUPES National Executive Board decided to give this money to CUPE Ontario for the Divisions provincial, municipal and school board election campaigns. The amounts paid to Ontario for political action are recorded in the Political Action expense schedule.
Spending was also less than 75% of the budget prediction in Major Organizing, where $833,707 was spent against a budget of $1,322,000. The costs of the representation votes in the Alberta Health Care Sector are all accounted for except for a few invoices that will straggle in during the fourth quarter. We spent $260,000, which was supplemented by funding from the Alberta Division and locals.
National Strike Fund
The fund balance (members equity) in the Strike Fund has now reached a level above what it was at the end of December 2002. You will recall that in the first quarter of 2003, the fund balance declined by $500,000 and then in the second quarter, it declined a further $1.7 million. In June, the cash position of the Fund was very nearly zero, despite the transfer of $2.3 million in cash from the National Defence Fund.
The balance in the fund started being restored by September 2003, when the recent large strikes had all come to an end. The fund is now showing a surplus position with revenue exceeding expenditures by $2.1 million for the 9-month period ending September 30th. By September, the bank balance was $4.4 million and we started to rebuild the cash reserves we so desperately need to be able to help our members.