Testimony Archive: 130th Legislature

This page contains only matters that came before the 130th Legislature. To see other archived sessions, return to the Testimony Archive Index. For testimony regarding matters before the current legislature, go to the main testimony page.

 

KEY:

= top priority bill

 

MONEY IN POLITICS

2022 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committe

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: It got a disastrous $1 million fiscal note. This one is still stuck on the Special Appropriations Table.

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill requires candidate or PAC, in town over 50,000 to submit information to Commission on Governmental Ethics and Elections instead of town clerk. Towns of less than 50,000 must post information on website within 24 hours after the deadline

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Contributors of more than $100,000 to a candidate or ballot question committee to influence a question must file a statement with the Commission on Governmental Ethics and Elections practices by exempting PAC and ballot question committee from filing major contributor report, request of modification of major donors for last 6 months, and clarifying the enforcement provisions for potential violations.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Effective 1/1/2023, a ballot question committee is now able to donate to a candidate or leadership PAC up to applicable limit except if funds derived from a business entity, biennial adjustment for individual donation limits to a separate segregated fund committee based on consumer price index, and allows an organization to contribute own employees or contractors paid time to a separate segregated fund committee it has established.

Our position: Supports

 

2021 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Concept draft on limiting excessive advertising.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill allowing unenrolled members of the Senate and House to elect a leader to designate an unenrolled action committee to promote the election of unenrolled members.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Foreign government-owned entity (10% or more ownership) restrictions; no contributions to influence referenda, pay for expenses to influence referenda, or participate in decision making to influence referenda. Also no person may solicit, accept or receive such help.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee: DIES

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill directs random audits of PACS that are required to file campaign finance reports and candidates for state offices by the Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices. Equal percentages between those who are certified as Maine Clean Election Act candidates and those who are not are required.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill provides a foreign national may not be solicitated or directly or indirectly contribute to influence the nomination or election of a candidate or the outcome of a ballot measure, state or local. Requires broadcast, cable and internet platforms to do due diligent to identify and remove.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill provides clarity for "independent expenditure" and amends campaign finance laws to prohibit a person, with actual malice, making an independent expenditure that contains a false statement about a candidate, fine up to $5,000.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill provides that foreign national may not contribute, influence, or participate in decision making for referendum. Nor may any person solicit, accept or receive a contribution to influence a referendum from a foreign national.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill requires the Executive Director of the Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices to refer a case of suspected fraudulent, falsified or misrepresented qualifying contributions under the Maine Clean Election Act to commission or AG, even if candidate has withdrawn as Clean Election candidate.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill eliminates the ability of gubernatorial candidates to obtain Maine Clean Election Act funding.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee: DIES

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Prohibits a political action committee from accepting contributions from candidates for President or federal office.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Our Corporate Contribution Ban remained one of our highest priorities for the 130th Legislature. 

Corporate political influence can crowd out the wishes of voters and warp the legislative process. It can reduce voter confidence that their votes count and that elections matter. It can also perpetuate private sector inefficiencies by allowing an unearned competitive advantage for companies and industries that have the power to influence public policy. And it can exacerbate inequalities between the haves and the have-nots.

 

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: Passes

Last Governor Action: Waits for Governor's signature

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Bill banning corporate campaign contributions in Maine elections.

Our position: Supports

 

 

States with corporate contribution bans:

 

Featured news:

Maine should ban election contributions from corporations | March 22, 2021 | Volunteer Mary Ann Larson writes about why we should ban corporate contributions in Maine elections. | Read the op-ed here.

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Permits participating candidates for the State Senate and State House in contested primary elections to receive up to 4 supplemental distributions from the Maine Clean Election Fund. The total number of supplemental distributions a participating candidate may receive in an election cycle remains capped at 8.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: Passes

Last Governor Action: Waits for Governor's signature

Signed into Law

 

League's position on money in politics

 

Summary: Takes existing PAC laws and fine-tunes them to increase transparency, reduce opportunities for corruption and self-dealing, and increase accountability.

Our position: Supports

 

 

ELECTIONS & VOTING

2022 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill requires retained possession, custody and control of sealled ballots by clerks unless law expressly authorizes transfer, keep in a secure location, with any inspection subject to oversight by an appropriate public official, and prohibits transfer of custody or control of a voting machine or voting device to any person except as authorized by the Secretary of State.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill provides that a person commits a Class C crime, instead of the current Class D crime, if that person intentionally interferes with a public official performing or the person believes is performing an official function relating to Federal, state or municipal election.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Acceptable Native American IDs, caucus and nominations for vacant state House/Senate minimum of 15 day requirement, nursing home/care facilities deviatations allowed for absentee voting during an emergency, and petition and question specific date and presentation requirements.

Our position: Supports

 

2021 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Designates Election Day in a Presidential election a state holiday.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill allows a municipality or jurisdiction to process absentee ballots beginning on the 7th day immediately prior to election day, instead of current law allows beginning the 4th day.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Constitutional amendment to specify that only a U.S. citizens may vote in a state, county or municipal or other local election.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House: DIES

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill allows a candidate to request a nickname be included on the ballot for an election in the state, declare it to be the name by which the candidate is known to others, and is in quotation marks after the candidate's full name.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill allows a municipality or jurisdiction to process absentee ballots beginning on the 7th day immediately prior to election day, instead of current law allows beginning the 4th day.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Signed into law, though not as LD 148. The provisions of this bill were incorporated into the bipartisan budget bill, LD 221, along with the funding to support it. The bill provides ongoing absentee voter status to voters aged 65 and over. It also stipulates that Maine will join the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) by January 1, 2023 for the purpose of sharing voter registration information with member states and using that information to update the central voter registration system.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House: FAILED FINAL PASSAGE

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Constitutional amendment: Governor, State Senators and State Representatives be elected by majority of votes cast.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill eliminates deadlines for request for absentee ballot and return by 3rd person. Allows in-person absentee ballot in presence of clerk until 8PM election day.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Passed to be enacted in the House, awaiting final passage on the Special Appropriations Table in the Senate. Unenrolled voters would be permitted to cast one ballot in the primary of their choice. Republicans would not be able to vote in Democratic primaries, and Democrats would not be able to vote in Republican primaries. We expect this bill to be carried over into the second session, funded, and enacted in 2022.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill requires that a voter provide photo ID approved by the Secretary of State.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House: DIES

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill designates Election Day, the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, 3 as a state holiday.

Our position: Neither For Nor Against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Allows an unenrolled voter to vote in a primary for one party's primary election, including presidential, without having to enroll in the party.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House: CARRIED OVER

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill prohibits any marking on absentee ballot envelope indicating political party of the voter during a general election.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill prohibits any marking on absentee ballot envelope indicating political party of the voter during a general election.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Bill requires photo ID when voting in person. Valid ID includes current Driver license, state ID, passport, military ID, or concealed handgun permit if includes a photo. Valid ID does not include Maine college or university ID.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Amendment to the Constitution of Maine to allow a process where municipalities can conduct early voting in the same manner as Election Day. Also to allow absentee voting for any sufficient reason.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Constitutional resolution proposes to reduce the voting age from 18 years of age or older to 16 years of age or older.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Bill requires an absentee ballot to be wrapped in a blank, opaque sleeve of sufficient thickness to prevent ballot being visible in return envelope.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Requires the SOS to maintain online absentee ballot tracking from application to acceptance/rejection by clerk.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Bill requires voter photo ID, acceptable ID includes state drivers license or state ID, passport, military ID, or cancealed handgun permit if includes photo. ID from college or university not acceptable. State must provide free photo ID for voters who does not have other photo ID.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Bill amends voting laws: 1) prohibits incarcerated people from voting, 2) requires paper ballots, 3) requires photo ID, 4) prohibits accepting ballots after polling close, 5) prohibits the buying of votes, 6) absentee ballots only for those who are unable to vote, reason must be certified, and 2 people must collect, deliver, and certify.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Provides for open primary elections for United States Senator, United States Representative to Congress, Governor, State Senator and State Representative. All of the candidates for those offices, including candidates enrolled in a party and unenrolled candidates, appear on the same open primary ballot. All qualified voters, regardless of enrollment status, are eligible to vote in open primary elections. The votes in an open primary election are tabulated using ranked-choice voting, except that the 2 candidates who receive the most votes are declared the winners of the open primary and their names appear on the ballot for the general election.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Bill requires the SOS to create a process for OVR by 1/2023, including being able to make changes to voter's information and enrolled party. OVR to be received on the 21st day before Election Day. Details for ID include state photo ID, SS last four digits, SOS must establish a process for identifying the voter by name, birthdate and ID, and voter must consent to use of electronic signature from state ID or send electronic copy of signature if using SS last four digits. Progress report by June, 30 2022.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Bill requires the SOS to: 1) Produce and publicly disseminate a guide to election procedures; 2) Develop an election complaint process; 3) Report to the Legislature on certain election issues after a general election; and 4) Conduct a pilot post-election audit.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Removes the closed period for absentee ballots and allows municipalities to process absentee ballots 7 days prior to Election Day.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Provides that a municipality may have one absentee ballot drop box or drop slot outside the municipal office building and sets standards for secure location, labeling and chain of custody.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Directs the Secretary of State to explore options for implementing a system of automatic voting by mail in Maine.

Our position: Neither for nor against

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Secretary of State omnibus bill of changes to election law including absentee ballot cure procedures and drop box protocols.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary:Allows registered voters to cast absentee ballots by electronic means approved by the Secretary of State.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary for LD 1330: Bill repeals ranked-choice voting and instead proposes to adopt the National Popular Vote compact.

Summary for LD 1384: This bill repeals ranked-choice voting for president and replaces with the National Popular Vote pact.

Our position: Supports, with an amendment to keep ranked-choice voting

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: DIES

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Establishes a Board of Convassers to examine the election returns for U.S. and state offices from the SOS. The board is charged with providing a statement of certification.

Our position: Opposes

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: The law would improve voter information, protect the rights of nonpartisan observers, and ensure consistent treatment of student IDs when registering to vote.

Our position: Supports

 

 

RACIAL JUSTICE

2022 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: This is the compromise bill negotiated between the tribes and the Governor to advance tribal rights while falling short of actual sovereignty. This bill was massively opposed by commercial gambling interests, but it was signed into law.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: This bill would give Passamaquoddy Tribal Members access to clean drinking water.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: This bill is a critical step towards improving demographic analysis and data sharing in Maine government that builds on the promise of LD 2 which this committee passed last year. As ardent followers and champions of the evidence-based public policy process, we have long observed the challenge captured by the statement β€œno data, no problem.” LD 1610 provides structures to make more of this data available so we can begin to identify the problems, and develop policy solutions to address them.

Our position: Supports

 

2021 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: Director or commissioner of a department required to provide data, analysis and other information when requested by a legislative committee to prepare a racial impact statement, which will access the potential impact of legislation on historically disadvantaged racial populations.

Our position: Supports

 

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate: Stuck on the Special Appropriations Table

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Understanding Dawnland Today

Tribal Sovereignty Resource Guide

 

Summary: This bill implements the consensus recommendations of the Task Force on Changes to the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Implementing Act.

Our position: Supports

 

 

​​​​​​Here at the League, we stand with Wabanaki communities and their claim to tribal sovereignty. LD 1626 was originally introduced last year but was carried over into 2022. We supported and testified in support of this bill, with attention to protecting the voting rights of tribal members.

 

ETHICS & DISCLOSURE

2021 TESTIMONY

Status:

Public hearing in Committee

Work session in Committee

Last Action in House

Last Action in Senate

Last Governor Action

Signed into Law

 

Summary: This bill authorizes municipal, county and school boards to adopt a policy allowing members of the body to participate remotely in a public proceeding. A public body may also allow the public to attend remotely and must provide public with how to attend.

Our position: Neither For Nor Against