Attempts to reach someone from AFSCME were unsuccessful.
David Boschert, executive director of MCEA, said the union is opposed to the Fair Share bill, which has passed in the Senate, and will not pass unless it comes to the House Monday for a vote.
Shank, R-Washington, said if all state employees joined AFSCME, the union would receive an additional $7.5 million annually. Each employee would give up about $400 annually in dues deducted from their paychecks.
"It is abhorrent when state employees are struggling with furlough days, there has been talk of layoffs ... to even consider this tax on state employees is repulsive to me," Shank said.
Shank plans to offer several amendments to the bill if it is heard Monday on the House floor.
Del. Richard B. Weldon Jr., who is unaffiliated and represents parts of Washington and Frederick counties, said he "hates" the Fair Share bill. He said it forces nonunion members and members of MCEA and other groups to join a union they do not want to belong to.
"That's something you hear about in a communist country," Weldon said. "Not ours."
MCEA represents 6,000 active employees and 5,000 retired employees statewide, Boschert said. The union does not participate in collective bargaining, which is the function of AFSCME. MCEA does offer legal representation in employee grievances and other services.
Boschert said MCEA dues are about $10.25 per paycheck, and he said AFSCME dues are slightly more.
Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, Sen. George C. Edwards, R-Allegany/Garrett/Washington, and Sen. Alex X. Mooney, R-Frederick/Washington, voted against the Fair Share bill in the Senate.
"I think people should have the choice whether to join a union and pay dues to that union," Munson said.
He said the bill effectively would put MCEA out of business because employees might not want to pay dues to two unions.
Fair Share has been debated in the past and has failed. Munson said he expects the bill to fail again this year.
Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, said he had not made up his mind on the bill and wanted to hear the debate on the issue before making a decision.