Daniel on Twitter pointed me to the audited accounts for the UNITE union, which are filed with the Registrar of Incorporated Societies.
The accounts to 31 March 2009 reveal the following:
- Their liabilities exceed their assets by around $172,000
- Their bank account is over-drawn to $63,000
- They owe the IRD around $130,000
- They have an agreement with IRD to pay the debt off at $8,000 per month
- They have a $30,000 loan from the National Distribution Trust, which presumably is associated with the ND Union.
This is a very bad look for a trade union, as some of their unpaid tax is PAYE. That means that have been taking the tax off their staff, and rather than pay it to the IRD, have kept onto it.
Employers who do that are labelled thieves and bad employers. It is seen as worse as not paying income tax because it is not tax on your own income, it is tax on behalf of your employees and you are acting in a role as trustee to deduct and pass on.
The 2010 accounts have not been filed. Hopefully they have paid back the IRD.
I like Matt McCarten – he is a genuine advocate for his beliefs. But to advocate that the state should be spending far more money, and have your own union not paying their taxes, exposes you to charges of hypocrisy.