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February 25, 2018

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Where Does $100 to the International Union of Police Associations AFL-CIO Go?

by Anne Paddock

Whenever a mass shooting occurs in the US (which is a monthly if not weekly occurrence), it seems the phone solicitation calls asking for support for our law enforcement increase.  This week, I received a call from an organization called the International Union of Police Associations AFL-CIO asking for a financial donation. I declined but thanked the man calling for alerting me to another non-profit whose IRS Form 990 needs to be looked at.

The International Union of Police Associations AFL-CIO (IUPA) is a 501 (c) (5) – which is a labor, agricultural or horticulture organization whose object must be the betterment of conditions of those engaged in the pursuits of labor, agriculture, or horticulture, which includes lobbying. Although 501 (5)’s are exempt from federal tax, contributions to these organizations are generally not deductible as charitable contributions.

According to the Form 990 (2016) covering the year beginning April 1, 2016 to March 30, 2107 submitted by IUPA to the IRS, IUPA is a labor union made up of members of law enforcement, based in Sarasota, Florida. Key pieces of information are as follows:

IUPA reported $19.4 million in revenue of which only $2.9 million came from membership dues. $16.4 million came from contributions which were primarily phone solicitation fundraisers who were compensated $14.7 million, netting IUPA $1.7 million. In other words, for every $1 raised by the phone solicitation fundraisers, only 10 cents went to IUPA because the phone solicitors kept 90 cents of every $1 or $90 of every $100 raised.

IUPA reported total expenses of $19.2 million, of which $14.7 million was paid to fundraisers, as stated below:

  • $14.7 million (76% of revenue):  Fees paid to Fundraisers
  • $ 1.8 million (9% of revenue):  Salaries, Benefits, Pension, and Payroll Taxes
  • $ 1.3 million (7% of revenue):  Legal, Accounting and other Fees for Services
  • $ 1.0 million (5% of revenue):  Office, Occupancy, IT, Insurance, Interest, Per Capita Taxes
  • $ 0.3 million (2% of revenue):  Travel and Conferences
  • $19.2 million: Total Expenses

Using the above information, $100 in revenue was spent as follows:

$100:  Revenue

-$ 76:  Fees to Fundraisers

-$  9:  Salaries, Benefits, Pension, and Payroll Taxes

-$  7:  Legal, Accounting, and other Fees for Services

-$  5:  Office,Occupancy, IT, Insurance, Interest, Per Capita Taxes

-$  2:  Travel and Conferences

-$100:  Total Expenses

However, it is important to point out that if $100 in revenue came from fundraisers, only $10 is provided to IUPA. Basically, IUPA is a labor union with 25 employees whose expenses total $4.5 million a year but whose membership dues only bring in $2.9 million. To make up the $1.6 million shortfall, IUPA relies on fundraisers who end up keeping most of what they raise. If you don’t want 90% of your donation to go to fundraisers, don’t respond to phone solicitations for IUPA.

IUPA has affiliate organizations whose names are used by fundraisers. These organizations operate out of the same business address in Sarasota go by the following names:

  • The Institute for Police Research
  • The IUPA Law Enforcement Officers Relief Fund
  • The US Secret Service Uniformed Division Officers Association
  • International Union of Police Associations – Florida Local 6000 – AFL-CIO
  • Law Enforcement Political Action Committee
  • Fairfax Deputy Sheriff’s Coalition
  • Lee County Deputy Sheriff’s Association

The phone solicitation fundraiser’s names are:

  • Outreach Calling of Reno, Nevada
  • Jak Productions, Inc of Atlanta, Georgia
  • Charity Appeal of Carson City, Nevada
  • Courtesy Call of Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Charity Promotions of Birmingham, Alabama
  • Donor Relations of Wilmington, Delaware
  • Public Awareness of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • RPI NY of Eatontown, New York
  • With Community Services of Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Statewide Appeal of Baton Rouge, Louisiana

If you receive a phone solicitation call, ask who is calling (the phone solicitors usually say they are calling on behalf or an organization and don’t tell you who they work for) and do not make a donation unless you want 90% of your donation to go to the above organizations.

Other key pieces of financial information on the IRS Form 990 include:

The 25 employees received total compensation of $1.8 million which equates to $72,000 each.  Three employees received more than $100,000 in compensation:

  • $226,454:  Samuel A Cabral, President
  • $144,468:  John O’Keefe, Executive VP and Secretary/Treasurer
  • $139,473:  Kevin Boyle, General Counsel

Each director of IUPA received $800 in compensation.

IUPA has total assets of $1.9 million which is concentrated in other securities (Prudential and Insignia Equities and bonds) and cash.  Liabilities total $1.3 million, most of which is deferred compensation, leaving net assets of about $600,000.

The bottom line is that IUPA is a labor union whose members don’t pay enough memberships dues to cover the expenses of the organization (most of which are staff, office/occupancy expenses, and legal fees). Instead of using fundraisers to make up the $1.6 million shortfall in revenue needed to cover expenses, IUPA uses fundraisers (who keep 90% of what they raise).  IUPA should raise membership dues to cover the services their members pay to be covered for instead of asking the public to cover the shortfall through phone solicitors who kept most of the donations.

To read the IRS Form 990, click here.

1 Comment Post a comment
  1. Name withheld - my ex boss reads sites like this.
    May 3 2018

    I used to work for one of these fundraising companies for around 3 years. It was an inside job and it was a job that hired me without much drama. I got okay bonuses, but got tired of dealing with irate people on the phone, sale -or-be-fired stress that was giving me health problems, and other issues. Not to mention, I did not really feel good about the job. Please do not hate. I was only trying to pay my rent in a tough job market for myself and my family.

    The company usually starts calling with the state branch of the IUPA. If it is for the “local guys”, a lot more people are more likely to give. They get a pledge commitment over the phone, mail you a thank you letter, return envelope, and a sticker saying you are a supporter for your vehicle.

    The problems?

    – Phone calls constantly are expensive as far as labor and running the place. Most of the time the percentage going to the organization is as low as 10 percent, perhaps 20 percent on a large local campaign.

    – Just because it is a state-wide organization DOES NOT mean it is for YOUR local cops. The IUPA only represented a few towns mostly in the northern part of my state, a few in the middle, a college campus, and none in the southern part. Yet we called the entire state.

    – IF you donate to anyone over the phone, your number is put on a list called a “rollover list”. Most fundraising companies may raise money for 10 to 12 organizations. You sending back money means YOU are more likely to give. They will call you for IUPA’s national, the NPTA. They will call you for the American Association of State Troopers, they will call you for fire charities, various cancer charities, sound alike kids charities. Then 6 months later call you for all those charities again since all of them have 2 fundraisers a year! Ignore the phone? They will just call you repeatedly 2-3 times a day till the list gets below a certain number!

    – While the fundraisers DO take 10 to 20 percent, MOST of the time the organization heads take most of what is left to add insult to injury. Some even brag about it like the guy that runs the Firefighter’s Charitable Foundation.

    – The funding that is not taken by the fundraisers or administration does not go necessarily to cops in need. It goes to lobbying for tougher laws to support more prisons, representing cops in court cases – even if they are wrong, and more cops meaning more members for the union. Some may have issue with this.

    Now, the fundraising companies will say they have to do this because otherwise people will not give. They have a small point.

    I say, if you want to give to an organization – give to the organization itself if it is a good one and you like their mission and it is not just a front for some administrator or fundraiser. You will do more good and you will not support abusive workplaces and the sweatshop owners that run them.

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