Education Honorario Found To Yield Scant Cash forMembers of Congress

June 20, 1990 6 min read

By Julie A. Miller

Washington--The 1989 financial-disclosure forms recently released by members of the Congress appear to support the widely held belief that specializing in education is not a route to impressive earnings from outside groups.

Some 40 education-related organizations paid members for speechmaking last year, but only six devoted at least $5,000 to that purpose--less than some lawmakers collected for single speeches. Many of the groups also paid lawmakers’ way on out-of-town trips.

Of the six education groups that spent the most on such “honoraria” last year, four are postsecondary organizations, including two proprietary-school groups.

The National Association of Trade and Technical Schools led with $10,000, followed by the Association of Community College Trustees with $7,500, the American Association of School Administrators and the Association of Independent Colleges and Schools with $6,000 each, the American Food Service Association with $5,500, and the Association of American Medical Colleges with $5,000.

The fees bestowed by natts were spread among four representatives and one senator, all but one Republicans. While other education groups did not favor g.o.p. members that strongly, they gave more to Republicans last year than in 1988, when the lion’s share of their honoraria went to Democrats. (See Education Week, May 31, 1989.)

Another change, which follows the overall trend for members of the Congress, is that lawmakers who sit on education committees generally collected less in speaking fees in 1989 than they did the year before.

Williams Top Recipient

One thing that did not change is the member who received the most honoraria from education groups. It was again Representative Pat Williams, the Montana Democrat who chairs the House Postsecondary Education Subcommittee.

Of the $26,950 he collected,0 came from education groups. Most are related to higher education, but he also received $1,000 from the a.a.s.a.

In addition, Mr. Williams received $2,000 for a speech to the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. So did Representative E. Thomas Coleman of Missouri, the postsecondary subcommittee’s ranking Republican. The two are the primary House supporters of the effort to provide federal funding for the board.

Mr. Coleman received $8,000 of his $27,250 in honoraria from education groups, tying him for second place among education beneficiaries with Representative William D. Ford, the Michigan Democrat who is expected to become chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee next year.

Mr. Coleman’s education honoraria came chiefly from higher-education groups, while Mr. Ford received $1,000 each from the National School Boards Association and the National Association of Federally Impacted Schools, as well as trip expenses from Utah Valley Community College, Harvard University, and the Education Commission of the States.

Mr. Williams and Mr. Coleman kept $26,850 in earnings, the maximum allowed for House members outside the leadership. Most senators can keep about $35,000; the rest must be donated to charity. Mr. Ford kept $26,700 of the $29,200 he earned.

Other Beneficiaries

Education groups also gave notable amounts to Pennsylvania Repre8sentatives Joseph M. Gaydos, a Democrat who received $6,000 of his $26,000 in honoraria from natts and two trade-school companies, and Bill Goodling, a Republican who collected $5,750 of his $8,050 in such fees from education groups, as well as expenses from the American Vocational Association and the e.c.s.

Not surprisingly, both are members of the Education and Labor Committee. Mr. Goodling, who took more space reporting on his horse-breeding business--which he termed a losing proposition--than on his honoraria, is its ranking Republican.

But Representative Thomas Tauke, Republican of Iowa, the Education and Labor panelist who collected the most honoraria, received none of his $36,882 from education groups. He donated all of those earnings to charity.

The panel’s chairman, Representative Augustus F. Hawkins, Democrat of California, collected only $3,750--all of it from education groups.

Senate Earnings

The Democrats who chair the Senate’s Labor and Human Resources Committee and its education subcommittee, Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts and Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, respectively, decline to take honoraria.

The subcommittee’s ranking Republican, Nancy L. Kassebaum of Kansas, received only $6,000 in honoraria--from two labor organizations and a newspaper article.

The senator receiving the most honoraria from education groups was the Illinois Democrat Paul Simon, who collected $5,400 of his $22,650 from such sources. The sources included the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, the Educational Testing Service, the African Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Two other members of the Labor and Human Resources Committee ranked 6th and 12th among all members of the Congress in the amount of honoraria they collected.

Senator Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, the panel’s ranking Republican, up $92,499, trailing only the Senate minority leader, Bob Dole of Kansas, and four House members. Mr. Hatch received $2,000 each from natts and the College and University Personnel Association, as well as $5,000 from Vanderbilt University.

The 12th ranked recipient, Senator Dave Durenberger, Republican of Minnesota, collected $62,185, including $500 from the National pta and $2,000 each from the medical colleges’ association and the Higher Education Assistance Foundation.

Education groups also contributed $5,000 to Mr. Dole’s $108,900 in earnings, but gave relatively little to the three members who were the biggest recipients in either house.

The top three were Democratic Representatives Dan Rostenkowski of Illinois, William H. Gray 3rd of Pennsylvania, and Patricia Schroeder of Colorado--all of whom collected more than $160,000 in honoraria.

Mr. Rostenkowski, the powerful Ways and Means Committee chairman, received nothing from education groups. Mr. Gray, the majority whip, took $2,000 from the Association of Independent Colleges and Schools, and Ms. Schroeder received $3,000 each from the American Home Economics Association and the American Association of Women in Community and Junior Colleges.

Speeches at colleges, however, were a major source of honoraria for many members, including some of the top earners. Ms. Schroeder re4ceived $58,000 from that source,Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., Democrat of Delaware, picked up about $29,000 of his $35,548 in earnings that way. The District of Columbia’s delegate to the House, Walter E. Fauntroy, earned more than $26,000 speaking at colleges.

Some members also accepted speaking fees from elementary and secondary schools. Representative Henry J. Hyde, Republican of Illinois, for example, collected a total of $700 from schools. Representative George Darden, Democrat of Georgia, reported a $50 fee from a high school.

Representative Mickey Edwards, an Oklahoma Republican not known for his work on education issues, reported an unquantified payment, plus expenses, from the Education Department for his attendance at a conference in San Francisco.

A version of this article appeared in the June 20, 1990 edition of Education Week as Education Honorario Found To Yield Scant Cash forMembers of Congress