Dupont, eBay Asked to Report on Lobbying Expenditures and Activities
April 25th, 2013
ICCR shareholders, led by the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, filed shareholder proposals at DuPont and eBay, asking that they report on their comprehensive lobbying activities, policies, and oversight mechanisms. The vote garnered 34% at Dupont and 24% at eBay, higher than usual figures.
In 2012, activist investors, coordinated by the Association of Federal, State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and Walden Asset Management in Boston, fostered a campaign calling for disclosure on lobbying activities and policies. Resolutions were submitted at 40 companies, 20 of which came to a vote, averaging 24% shareholder support. This 2013 shareholder proposal is the first time that a shareholder resolution on lobbying activities and policies has been filed at DuPont. The proposal at eBay was apparently irregular, but Management allowed a vote on it.
The proposals were non-binding and requested of the company that it annually report on its lobbying-related activities, policies, and oversight mechanisms. The Dupont proposal called on the company to report on:
1. Company policy and procedures governing lobbying, both direct and indirect, and grassroots lobbying communications.
2. Payments by DuPont used for (a) direct or indirect lobbying or (b) grassroots lobbying communications, in each case including the amount of the payment and the recipient.
3. DuPont’s membership in and payments to any tax-exempt organization that writes and endorses model legislation.
4. Description of the decision making process and oversight by management and the Board for making payments described in section 2 above.
Other votes on proposals of concern to faith-based investors were:
- Independent Board Chair 34%
- Genetically Engineered Seed 6%
- Executive Compensation Report 7%
A statement was read at the Dupont AGM on behalf of the Missionary Oblates (Download a PDF of the statement here)