FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 4, 2011
Contact: Dave Lackey
Secretary of State Summers Validates Citizen Initiative to Establish a Slot Machine Facility in Lewiston
Initiative to Move on to Legislature
AUGUSTA, MAINE — Secretary of State Charles Summers announced today that enough valid signatures have been submitted to place “An Act Regarding Establishing a Slot Machine Facility” before the Maine State Legislature.
“After an exhaustive review, we have determined that 59,095 signatures on the petition have been determined valid,” Summers explained. “I know what a difficult task this was for the organizers to meet the required threshold and I commend them on their efforts. I also want to thank Deputy Secretary of State Julie Flynn and her dedicated staff for all of their hard work in ensuring that the integrity of the process was preserved and the statutory deadline for the determination was met.” The proponents were notified of the Secretary’s decision this afternoon.
Proponents were required to gather at least 57, 277 valid signatures - 10% of turnout in the previous gubernatorial election - by January 20, 2011 as provided for in the Maine Constitution. Of the 74,388 signatures submitted, 15,293 signatures were determined to be invalid.
If the Legislature does not approve the measure, it will appear as a ballot question on the November 8, 2011 Referendum Election ballot, allowing Maine voters to determine its passage.
Anyone challenging the decision of the Secretary of State has five business days to file an appeal in Superior Court. Once the challenge period has passed, the Secretary of State will transmit the initiated bill to the Legislature for its consideration.
The complete decision validated by the Secretary of State appears below:
STATE OF MAINE
OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE
DETERMINATION OF THE VALIDITY OF A PETITION FOR INITIATED LEGISLATION ENTITLED:
“An Act Regarding Establishing a Slot Machine Facility”
1. On December 30, 2010, January 6, 2011 and January 19, 2011, 8,875 petitions containing 74,388 signatures were submitted to the Secretary of State pursuant to the Constitution of Maine, Article IV, Part Third, Section 18 on behalf of the initiated legislation entitled, “An Act Regarding Establishing a Slot Machine Facility”.
2. Following a review of these petitions I find the following signatures to be invalid for the following reasons:
A. 8,538 signatures are invalid because they were not certified by the registrar as belonging to a registered voter in that municipality. (REG)
B. 5,141 signatures are invalid because they are duplicates of signatures already counted. (DUP)
C. 715 signatures are invalid because the residency status of the circulator who collected those signatures could not be confirmed. (MUNI)
D. 255 signatures are invalid because the voter’s signature was withdrawn (crossed out) on the petition. (WD)
E. 196 signatures are invalid because the petition was not on the approved form. (FORM)
F. 139 signatures are invalid because the circulator’s oath was not complete or not administered properly. (OATH)
G. 103 signatures are invalid because the petitioner failed to provide a signature. (SIG)
H. 92 signatures are invalid because the voter dated his or her signature after the date of the circulator’s oath before the notary or the voter’s signature was not dated and it could not be determined that the voter signed the petition before the circulator took the oath. (DATE)
I. 88 signatures are invalid because the registered voter’s signature was made by another. (ANO)
J. 12 signatures are invalid because the certification of the registrar was not completed. (CERT)
K. 9 signatures are invalid because of material alterations to the petition. (ALT)
L. 5 signatures are invalid because the circulator oath’s was not completed prior to submitting the petition to the registrar for certification. (PRIOR)
3. 35,569 signatures on 4,641 petitions were initially determined to be invalid (and coded as “OATSIG”) because the signature of the notary administering the oath did not match the notary’s official signature on file, and it could not be determined from the face of the petitions that the signature was made by the notary whose stamp appears on the petitions. In response to further inquiry however, the notary public verified, and subsequently confirmed in a sworn statement, that he had administered the oath to all of the circulators on these petitions and personally signed and affixed his notary stamp to all of the petitions. Based on this additional evidence, I find these signatures to be valid.
4. For the reasons set forth above, I find that 15,293 signatures are invalid and 59,095 signatures are valid. The number of signatures required to determine the petition to be valid is 57,277. Because the number of valid signatures exceeds the required number by 1,818 signatures, I find the petition to be valid.
Dated: February 4, 2011
Charles E. Summers, Jr.
Secretary of State