Annual meeting tomorrow

I look forward to the possibility of hearing some good news about the bank’s finances at the meeting tomorrow. I don’t hold a lot of hope, but wish for the best. The employees deserve it and so do the communities involved, along with the shareholders.

Unless there is a dramatic change in the outlook, I will withdraw my nomination of  Steve to the board. I’m no banker, but the consensus is that it is highly unlikely, though not impossible,  that the survival of the bank as we know it, is in the cards.

The proxy access proposal will be presented. It is important if the bank survives intact.

By the way, there were several proxy access proposals put forth in 2012. A few were allowed but more were disallowed from the corporate proxies. I was actually astounded that this proposal was  to be included on the bank’s proxy. It appeared to be virtually no contest to have it thrown out by the SEC, when challenged by corporate attorneys. It wasn’t even challenged here, but then the board made a recommendation to vote against it. So it goes.

If memory serves, the bank usually announces somewhere near the outset of the meeting, that they hold enough shares to carry the vote. I would be surprised if that weren’t the case tomorrow, too.  That would render the previously mentioned actions moot, of course. But still of some importance.

12 comments on “Annual meeting tomorrow

  1. Will someone post the results of the meeting? After reading that Mr. Bonucci’s nomination was going to be withdrawn (or not put forth), I voted on line and did not take the day off to attend.

    I am sure others unable to attend are interested.

    • I didn’t write down a lot of numbers but maybe someone else did. Everything discretionary went with the board’s votes at about 900,000+ to our 300,000+ votes. The auditors were voted in with over 2 million votes. The funds that hold the street name shares can vote for that. There were at least 40,000 shares represented at that meeting that would have voted our way, that were disallowed because the owners did not have a legal proxy and the shares were held in street name.
      Thanks to all who participated and voted regardless of which way.

    • As most of you know from my posting I have not been shy about taking the board to task. A lot of those comments came from the way the board handled last years meeting that I attended. I felt that if they tried the same format as last year the shareholders might revolt.

      Well I want to be the first to tell you what a welcome change this meeting was from last year. My hat is off to Tom and Craig for the way the meeting was conducted.

      The entire meeting was devoted to explaining the problems that we have. I believe that they shared all that they could given SEC guidelines. They could of done a better job of explaining the proxy voting procedures and requirements. I would say that Lou Ann dropped the ball on that one but it didn’t make any difference because it was to late to do anything about it.
      Had she addressed my letter that I wrote back in Mar. we probably would have had more informed shareholders. Whether the intent was to keep us uninformed I do not know.

      I hope this is not wishful thinking but I even sensed a but of contriteness on their part.

      All in all a very good meeting.

      I want to complement Dave for all the hard work he has done. Yes we lost but think about this. The first time out of the chute and we got 33% of the vote. Only 18% more and we would have won. Other corporations I follow took a couple of tries to get the job done. I am just like a CUB fan, there’s always next year.

      • I certainly respect Bob’s opinion, candor and comments, however, I am not in agreement about the annual meeting. In fact, I left disappointed and frustrated. The BIGGEST issue for this bank is raising capital and they totally side- stepped this matter. As Bob points out, they are resticted by the SEC as to what they can share. However, I didn’t hear anything about a serious positive plan with the exception of Tom mentioning they have submitted one. I feel they could have beem more forthcoming considering the serious nature of the lack of capital.
        They obviously knew there were a lot of angry stockholders, and they addressed the problem loan porfolio, but I thought a lot of it was spin and nothing definitive on how they can recover.

        • I believe Tom said they are in negotiations going down three different paths simultaneously to raise capital. I would not expect him to say more. The one question I wish I had asked, is how much additional capital is required to meet the Tier 1 requirement? That might have been a question he could have answered, because it’s a mathematical calculation. But if I am right, I don’t believe anyone is going to want to hear the number, because of how much our stock will be diluted.

          He also talked about not having to pay back the TARP funds. But my guess is that is on the top of his list. No he doesn’t have to pay it back but they do have to pay interest on the money. They are not making the payments now but they are accruing so eventually they have to pay and in the meantime the have the sword hanging over their head. Or to state it another way you will never see a dividend until it is paid back.

          In answer to a question about the delisting from the NASDAQ he indicated that they had 180 days and would meet that deadline. But he also said that it was costing 300,000 a year to keep the registration. As I understood from reading between the lines, they would have enough capital raised to maintain the listing by the deadline, but they might not maintain it.

          In summary: Some things are best left unsaid.

          • I’m not certain that Ogaard said that there were “negotiations” going on those three paths. Maybe he said they were looking or studying those three?

  2. I agree with Bob that the meeting was better than usual. However, I was disappointed with how Tom answered (or didn’t) our questions during the Q & A period. He is really a PR expert. He should get into politics.

    I blame Lou Ann about the confusion on voting. I remember Bob had posted on this site earlier about having trouble getting instructions from anyone at the bank to help explain this issue. We know people have been asking for help with it. At the meeting, Lou Ann seemed to understand it perfectly. Why didn’t she do her job, and explain it to shareholders weeks ago? What does her title “Vice-President of Investor Relations” mean? Aren’t we shareholders the Investors?

    My favorite part of the meeting was the applause given for the question about WHY WOULD THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS REWARD THEMSELVES GIVEN THE MESS THE BANK WAS IN? (It was the only applause during the meeting.)

    Finally, I, too, want to compliment and thank Dave for all he has done to educate us and encourage us to tackle this issue of “proxy access.” The issue of proxy access is a national movement, and we are leaders. If it weren’t for the shareholders, the bank and its directors wouldn’t be here. Shouldn’t it be easier for us to have some say in how things are managed?

    Thank-you, Dave. From Sarah Criner

  3. Those who attended the annual meeting, and were encouraged, buy more stock. Otherwise, sell. That’s the ultimate poll.

  4. During a meeting recess while votes were being counted, I approached the head table, where Tom Ogaard and Craig Wesner were standing together. I initially engaged Ogaard, but then I gestered for Wesner to hear what I had to say. Ogaard then seem to become distracted off to his right, although he would have heard my initial remarks. One of the new senior officers. who made a presentation, was off to Wesner’s left, and heard most of our conversation.

    I will try to collect my thoughts and perhaps post them here.

    • Doug, what was that rambling about? What ever you said above doesnt seem to make sense and all it seemed to do was elude to a conversation but tells nothing of the content.

  5. Ogaard spoke for some considerable time about the bank’s staff dealing with the stress of the current situation, while still providing cheerful service. He mentioned staff being hit up after church with questions about the bank’s situation.

    OK, I agree – the service is fine. But what are we stockholders supposed to do about it? Most of us know as much as the staff – and wouldn’t ask the staff such questions – to avoid their embarrassment. I suspect that the questioners are primarily customers of the bank, not stockholders. I would suggest that the bank do a better job of communicating with the public to alleviate such concerns.

    Likewise, a bank presenter expressed annoyance that there had been rumors and complaints about the delayed release of 2011 financial results. But coudn’t the bank have released info explaining the delay while it was going on? Now, months later, why harrangue the stockholders at the annual meeting?

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