KOTZEBUE (AP) -- The state has ordered a group of NANA Regional Corp. shareholders to halt their efforts to recall the Native regional corporation's board of directors.
The order was issued by the state Division of Banking, Securities and Corporations, according to the Arctic Sounder newspaper.
Eileen Buchanan, the division's securities examiner in Juneau, ruled on April 11 that the dissident shareholders had violated the Alaska Securities Act in their attempt to recall the Native board.
The cease and desist order did not say that the dissident group could not continue their efforts to recall the board. Instead, it suggested the shareholders seek legal advice before continuing.
''We certainly don't want to take any action against a shareholder that would stop them from exercising their rights,'' Buchanan said.
The dissidents started their effort at the beginning of the year with a petition seeking a special meeting to recall the board.
They claimed Kotzebue-based NANA has ignored shareholder concerns over a range of issues, including employment for shareholders, education and training opportunities, and land use policies.
They wanted limit the corporation's ability to sell NANA lands, set a 15-year term limit for board members, and change the board's at-large seat to an Anchorage-area seat.
NANA filed a complaint in January claiming that the group's petition made false claims and violated the state's proxy regulations. The corporation's complaint listed four individuals as defendants.
In her decision, Buchanan said that she believed the group did not intend to mislead shareholders. A fine was not levied.
Tina Harris, one of the four defendants, said the group had not ruled out another recall campaign.
''Right now, we're not sure what we're going to do,'' she said. ''It was a lot of work and if we're going to do it again, you can bet we'll do it right.''
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