Juneau, Alaska – The Alaska Legislature today, with a vote of 18-1 in the Alaska Senate, voted to empower Alaska Native Corporations with the ability to adjust quorum requirements.
House Bill 149, by Representative Lance Pruitt, gives Alaska Native Corporations that were incorporated before July 1, 1989, the option to amend their articles of incorporation, reducing the quorum requirements for a meeting of shareholders to one-third of the outstanding shares entitled to vote at a meeting, represented in person or by proxy.
AS 10.06.415 allows a corporation to reduce its quorum to one-third of the shares eligible to vote by amending its articles of incorporation. Because most ANC’s were formed before July 1, 1989, the standard for amending their articles of incorporation is approval by two-thirds of the shares eligible to vote. For most Alaska corporations formed after July 1, 1989, the standard is a simple majority of the shares eligible to vote. Many Alaska Native Corporations struggle to achieve a quorum of two-thirds, thus amendment of the articles of incorporation is virtually impossible as a practical matter.
“As ANCSA corporations have increased membership by enrolling their children, and as shareholders have become more geographically dispersed, participation in annual meetings have dropped.” Pruitt, R-Anchorage, said. “This bill will take into account the unique challenges facing Alaska Native Corporations and give shareholders the option to change their quorum requirements.”
HB 149, which passed the House on a vote of 31-5, now goes to the governor for signature.