Owner with 55 proxies can't be stopped
Dear Tony: We had our AGM Monday night and one owner showed up with 55 proxies. Clearly she had gone door to door collecting owners' votes and controlled the outcome of every decision at our meeting. The outcome was not negative, every resolution passed, but she controlled the election of the incoming council and the old council were completely excluded. How we can we stop one person from holding more than one proxy and controlling the business of our strata? This is unfair.
Dear Sandra: A proxy is a person who represents an owner at an annual or special general meeting. The standard/optional proxy Form A in the Strata Property Act is a sample that may be used by the strata corporation in their notice package or any other modified version. To authorize someone to vote on an owner’s behalf, they must issue a proxy assignment to that owner that is in writing, signed by the owner (person appointing the proxy) and may be for a specific meeting, and contain specific instructions and limitations. We have many owners who are not residents, who own multiple strata lots, or who are unavailable for meetings. As a result, the ability to assign a proxy is essential to protect their voting rights. Because proxies are issued by an owner, there is no way a strata corporation has control over the assignments, and it would be impossible to limit the number of proxies held by an owner at a meeting without violating the voting rights of owners who issue proxies. It is important for strata corporations and property managers to understand that a proxy form is not an absentee vote. It is simply the assignment of the voting right to another person (the proxy) and may contain voting instructions or limitations assigned to that person. Any proxies issued must be represented by a person, and an employee of the strata corporation or person who provides strata management services is not permitted to hold proxies. If owners don’t like the outcome of meetings, they should stop issuing proxies, take their property ownership responsibilities seriously and show up at meetings.
Sincerely, Tony Gioventu
Condominium Home Owners Association