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The impact of not enacting a dues adjustment in 2024

National associations play a vital role in providing effective support, advocacy, and resources to their members and the respective industries they represent. However, these organizations face growing challenges in maintaining their operations and services amid rising costs during unprecedented times. The National Court Reporters Association (NCRA) is certainly no exception. As the Association marks its quasquicentennial, the most significant issue NCRA faces is the need to pass a dues adjustment — something the Association has not done for nearly five years when the industry averages a new dues schedule every three. The consequences of the failure for the members of the National Court Reporters Association will impact the short- and long-term well-being of their Association, the services they have been accustomed to, and the potential immediate curtailing of events such as the annual Conference & Expo.

Under the direction of the Association’s Executive Director Dave Wenhold, CAE, PLC, and in collaboration with Vice President of Finance & Human Resources, John N. Dripps, CPA, CGMA, CAE, NCRA has begun an aggressive effort to “turn over every rock” to search for savings since 2019.

The consequences of not enacting the proposed dues adjustment include but are not limited to:

  • Budget shortfalls: the Association will struggle to cover the ever-increasing expenses and overhead for operations, leading to greater budget shortfalls. This will force NCRA to make difficult decisions such as eliminating or scaling down educational programs such as the NCRA A to Z® Intro to Steno Machine Shorthand program, networking events like the Firm Owners Focus, and even the Speed and Realtime Contests held at the annual Conference & Expo.
  • Reduced member benefits: NCRA prides itself on the member benefits and services it has provided for 125 years. However, the ability to maintain and expand such deals as the member exclusive NCRA Saving Center, delivery of the JCR magazine, and continued advocacy in coordination with state associations to stave off the invasion of artificial intelligence into the industry is at risk.
  • Financial instability: Without the consistent stream of income that this dues adjustment would provide, NCRA will be susceptible to the dangers of being financially insolvent. This can lead to staff layoffs, elimination of committees and task forces, and the potential dissolution of NCRA itself.

While it may be tempting to avoid enacting the proposed $50 dues adjustment this August, you hold the future of the Association in your hands. For 125 years NCRA has not been immune to the economic booms and busts every other industry has endured.

Find more information on the 2025 Dues adjustment proposal

Voting on the 2025 dues adjustment proposal will begin within two hours of the Annual Business Meeting taking place on Aug. 1 in conjunction with the 2024 NCRA Conference & Expo. Learn more about the proposal.