This question from ACT about whether a proxy vote counts towards a meeting quorum has been answered by Jan Browne, Whittles Strata Partners.
Question: In the ACT, does the appointment of a proxy count towards a quorum at a meeting? I’ve found conflicting views between the Act and what I’ve been told.
I have received a Proxy Form for our upcoming AGM in mid-October. The form states:
Section 1: Appointment of a Proxy (This will count toward a quorum at the meeting).
I note that Section 3.9 (1) of the Act states members of the owners corporation must be present to be included in a quorum.
Also, Section 3.31 (1) (4) states “A person who casts an absentee vote under this section is taken to be present (except for the purposes of making up a quorum).”
Our Strata Manager has provided the following explaination:
“The Office of Regulatory Services have ruled that proxy forms are to be counted as being present at a meeting.”
Your assistance in clarifying this issue would be appreciated.
Answer: A proxy counts, however, an absentee vote does not.
The advice from the strata manager is correct in that a proxy counts towards a quorum. However, an Absentee vote does not count towards a quorum.
Below is an extract from the publication as developed by Access Canberra. There has also being a ruling in ACAT along the below lines.
Unit titles management in the ACT:
Proxy and Absentee Voting
Proxy voting and absentee voting are used when a person is not able to attend a meeting. A proxy vote counts towards a meeting quorum and for decisions taken at the meeting.
An absentee vote counts towards a decision taken at the meeting but does not count towards making up a quorum. People may appoint a proxy to vote on their behalf and direct how the proxy is to use their vote.
A person may cast an absentee vote by using an absentee voting and giving it to the owners corporation before the meeting.
Have a question about proxy votes, absentee votes or quorums? Maybe you’ve got something to add to the article? Leave a comment below.
This post appears in Strata News #290.
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This article is not intended to be personal advice and you should not rely on it as a substitute for any form of advice.