An ordinary resolution is passed if there are more ‘YES’ votes than ‘NO’ votes. However, if a poll is requested, the ordinary resolution must be counted slightly differently. A poll should be requested immediately after a vote, as it can only be requested before the next motion is heard, or if it is the last motion, before the meeting is ended. Also, it cannot be requested for an ordinary resolution done via secret ballot.
When counting an ordinary resolution after a poll has been requested, the total contribution schedule lot entitlements must be counted instead. This means that, if an ordinary resolution would have passed 7:4, it may be that the motion could fail if counted based on contribution schedule lot entitlements.
Say a scheme consists of two buildings. Seven lots are in one building, and four lots are in the second building. The first seven lots each have ‘1’ contribution schedule lot entitlement. The four lots in the second building are much bigger, and the body corporate needs comparatively more money to maintain that building, so those four lots in the second building each have ‘2’ contribution schedule lot entitlements.
The first seven vote ‘YES’ on a motion, and the four lots in the second building vote ‘NO’. As an ordinary resolution, the motion should pass 7:4, but then an owner in the second building requests a poll. Instead of votes, the contribution schedule lot entitlements are counted. This results in the count being 7:8, meaning the vote has failed.
This could be requested for many reasons. For example, the seven people in the first building might want to increase maintenance to their own building. However, the four people in the second building actually contribute more to the body corporate’s finances than the seven people in the first building, so they would be contributing much more to the first building’s maintenance without any of the benefit. They might then request a poll. A majority of voters may not actually be representative of those who contribute to the maintenance of the body corporate, so a poll is a way to ensure a vote is more representative based on who contribute more.