Meeting quorum

To insure that your proxy is used solely so the AGM can meet quorum, put a large X through the candidates' names part of the form and write in:
"For quorum purposes only."



This will insure that the person collecting your proxy, or management, will not fill in the names of their preferred candidates.

Why is this necessary?
I received an e-mail from a reader that owns a condo unit in a small city in south-western Ontario.

The manager was asking for proxies just so the corporation would be able to make quorum. An owner signed the proxy and gave it to the manager.

The owner then attended the AGM and asked for her proxy back. When she received it, she saw that someone had wrote in the names of two candidates.

When she protested that she handed in a blank proxy, the manager stated that she gave permission for the board to fill in the candidates' names.

A little checking around and she found out that this is a common practice at that condo.

2nd example
Here is a paragraph from a condo election leaflet from a candidate in Etobicoke that was written in 2011:

"3.  Many owners have carelessly given away their proxies (the blue paper), you should know if you give out a blank proxy with just your name and signature to anyone, the proxy holder can later fill in the names of any   candidates in their favor. After knowing this if  you have mistakenly given your proxy? You can come to the meeting in person and give your vote. This will cancel any proxy you have previous given. I insist on this specific topic for the reason that our last AGM meeting there were only 33 owners, and 44 proxies. I hope you now have a better understanding of AGM. And how important it is for you to be present at these Annual Meetings."

This is a second example, out of hundreds of condos in Ontario, where "proxy farmers" gather signed proxies and then fill in the candidates of their choice.

What makes this example special, is that a candidate knew enough to inform the owners that this occurs in their condo and he tells them how they can revoke the proxy and make their vote count by turning up at the meeting.

New condo proxy
The new three page form that condo owners in Ontario must use may discourage some managers and owners from playing this game but it will not stop all attempts to farm proxies.

Showing contempt
If there is no credible candidate interested in running against the incumbents, because of rigged elections, cronyism, suspected corruption or apathy, then why not show your contempt for the process by writing in the name of your cat or dog. It would would be a stinging rebuke if a cat got the most votes.

The proxy is still valid for quorum purposes but it lets the board and the management company know that their legitimacy is in question.

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