Secretary of State accepting public comments on energy corridor ballot question wording

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 1:30pm

AUGUSTA —  Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap is now accepting public comment for the wording of the energy transmission project citizens' initiative question that is qualified to appear on the Nov. 3, 2020 Referendum Election ballot.

The Bureau of Corporations, Elections and Commissions initially certified the citizens initiative Resolve, To Reject the New England Clean Energy Connect Transmission Project on March 4, with an amended decision issued April 1 following a court ruling. The new decision issued April 1 finds 66,117 valid signatures. A minimum of 63,067 signatures from registered Maine voters is required to qualify for the ballot.

State law requires Secretary Dunlap to present the ballot question “concisely and intelligibly.” He will be accepting public comments regarding the questions form and content for a 30-day period, beginning today, May 22, until 5 p.m. on Monday, June 22, 2020.

Secretary Dunlap is proposing the following wording to appear on the ballot for this initiative: Do you want to adopt a Resolve directing the Maine Public Utilities Commission to reverse its approval of the proposed New England Clean Energy Connect power transmission line?

Comments supporting or opposing the citizens initiative will not be considered; this 30-day period is to receive comments only on the ballot question itself, and whether the question presents an accurate and clear representation of the proposed resolve.

Public comments must be received by the Secretary of State prior to the aforementioned deadline. 

Written comments may be filed with the Secretary of State in the following ways:

By email at sos.office@maine.gov; use subject line “Public Comment.”

By mail at Secretary of State, Attn: Public Comment, 148 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0148

By hand delivery at: Office of the Secretary of State, Nash School Building, 103 Sewall St., 2nd Floor, Augusta, Maine.