Portman Building Society has announced that carpetbagger Tim Tanner has gained the required support to stand as a candidate for election to the board in its forthcoming AGM elections.
However, three resolutions submitted by Tanner will not be put to members as they have no legal effect. For the third time in as many years, Tanner has put resolutions to the society which do not meet the requirements of building society legislation and the society's rules.
John Roques, chairman of Portman, says: “Tim Tanner will be a candidate for election to the Board at the Society's forthcoming AGM. He does not however have the support of the Portman Board.
“The Board believes that he lacks the necessary experience to serve and contribute as a Director of a £10 billion highly regulated financial services institution. The Society's Directors must have the qualifications and expertise to safeguard members' savings and to provide the highest level of return whilst maintaining competitive mortgage rates”.
Mr Tanner claims to stand on a “greater member democracy” ticket and is supported by a small number of members complaining about the closure of an uneconomic branch in Pewsey, Wiltshire, a county where there is no other building society with more branches than the Portman. Mr Tanner has also criticised the Chief Executive's remuneration, the Portman's voting form and the election process.
Roques adds: “The Board's policy is to pay the proper market rate to ensure it attracts and retains the right person for the position of Chief Executive. Mr Sharpe's salary is independently assessed every year and is very much in line with his peers in financial services. His value to the Society is reflected in the strong growth that it has experienced every year since he took office.
“When it comes to the voting form, Mr Tanner fails to recognise that the Society's Board has a duty to recommend to its members the candidates it believes are best qualified to serve as a director. The election process involves independent scrutineers and it is ridiculous to suggest, as Mr Tanner has, that the Society's elections are “rigged”.”