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Fury over ARB's postal vote bid to increase retention fee

The ARB's leadership is launching another 'highly unusual' bid to increase the retention fee.

Last week at a board meeting, members of the ARB Reform Group threatened to walk out - and leave the board 'inquorate' - if the proposal was pushed through.

The board's leadership, who wanted to up the retention fee by £1.50, was forced to drop the bid.

But now lay member Alan Crane, with the support of chairman Humphrey Lloyd and vice-chair Sarah Lupton, has launched a bid to get the increase approved by a postal vote.

This move, which is highly unusual, is sure to be greeted with disgust by members of the Reform Group, who believed they had killed off the increase.

The postal vote can be seen as a move designed to counter the Reform Group's policy of threatening a walk-out when it looks like they will be defeated on motions that are important to them.

The reformers are known to be furious with Crane for launching the postal vote, with some predicting that this is 'the beginning of the end'.

The reform group, which wants the board's work severely pared back, rose to prominence during the last board elections when they picked up over 70 per cent of the vote and the top four places in the ballot.

However, they do not hold a majority on the board because of the preponderance of laypeople, who are appointed.

by Ed Dorrell

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