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December 19, 2012 Commission Meeting
Click the title of an agenda item below to view a pdf file of the meeting materials relating to that item.
The Commission will hold a hearing to receive sworn testimony concerning expenditures by Philip Soucy and others to promote the election of Michael Nadeau to the Maine House of Representatives, District 1.
In the 2012 general election, Alan Casavant was running for re-election to the Maine House of Representatives, District 137. On September 14, 2012, his legislative campaign accepted a loan of $1,000 from his 2011 mayoral campaign committee, which the legislative campaign repaid on October 20, 2012. The receipt of the loan appears to be a violation of the $350 contribution limit for legislative candidates. Rep. Casavant has responded that he did not view the loan as a contribution, the loan was repaid and publicly reported, any violation was unintentional, and that he relied on advice from others before receiving the loan. Staff recommendation: the staff accepts that the violation was unintended, but recommends that the Commission assess a penalty of $125 for the violation.
Former Rep. James Parker of Veazie reported making two payments of Maine Clean Election Act funds in June 2012 totaling roughly $59 for stamps and envelopes. A constituent has requested that the Commission investigate whether Rep. Parker used the stamps and envelopes for a June 29 mailing related to the annual meeting of the Veazie Sewer District. Rep. Parker responds that the sewer district mailing was paid for with personal funds, not public campaign funds.
L PAC is a national political action committee formed in April 2012. In early September, the PAC solicited contributions on its Facebook page for the purpose of influencing the marriage initiative on Maine’s November 6, 2012 election ballot. It registered and filed an initial report with the Commission on October 15, 2012. Based on the dates of its contributions, however, L PAC’s registration, initial campaign finance report, and October 5 quarterly report were late. L PAC was also late in filing a report due on October 26, 2012. The PAC requests a waiver of the late-filing penalties because of a lack of familiarity with Maine campaign finance laws and because it made a bona fide effort to comply with statutory requirements. Staff recommendation: the Commission staff recommends reducing the penalties by 75% (registration and first two reports) and 100% (third report), for a total penalty of $889.50.
The Commission will consider whether to include statute changes proposed by its staff in legislation which the Commission will submit for the 2013 session.
The Commission will consider whether to initiate a rulemaking concerning amendments proposed by Commission staff. If the Commission agrees, the Commission could hold a public hearing to receive comments at the Commission’s January 17, 2013 meeting.
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