December 18, 2020 Commission Meeting

Agenda (132.23 KB)
Minutes (227.53 KB)

Note:  Due to COVID-19 precautions, the Commission’s office is not open to the public.  The meeting was conducted through Zoom video conferencing and live streamed to YouTube for the public to access. 

1.  Ratification of Minutes of the October 30, 2020 Meeting

Motion:  To adopt the 10/30/2020 Minutes as written.
Made by:  Mr. Hastings
Seconded by:  Ms. Lowry
Vote:  5-0

2.  Public Hearing on Proposed Rule Amendment

The Commission will hold a public hearing to receive comments on a proposed rule amendment to address whether a candidate who has accepted traditional campaign contributions may participate in the Maine Clean Election Act program.

3.  Missing Disclosure on Election Signs – Steve Collins

House candidate Timothy H. Goodwin of Standish, Maine filed a complaint alleging that a proprietor of a local general store, Steve Collins, paid for and posted around 30 yard signs advocating against Mr. Goodwin’s election that did not clearly state who paid for the signs.  Mr. Collins has acknowledged to the Commission staff that he paid for the signs.  He has not responded to the complaint or provided any argument that the signs were in compliance.

Motion:  To find that Steve Collins violated 21-A MRS § 1014(2), which is the failure to put the necessary disclosure on signs that exceeded a cost of $100 and assess a penalty of $200 for this violation.
Made by:  Mr. Lee
Seconded by:  Mr. Schneider
Vote:  5-0

4.  Potential Investigation of Working Families PAC

The Working Families PAC is a committee formed by former State Representative Diane Russell.  Ms. Russell has been filing campaign finance reports on behalf of the PAC during 2020 but did not file two campaign finance reports due in October, and has been unresponsive to email communications, phone calls, and letters mailed to her residence.  The PAC’s treasurer, who resigned in September 2020, believes that the PAC’s actual cash balance was consistently less than the calculated balance shown on the cover page of PAC reports. 

Motion:  To authorize the Ethics Commission staff to review the transactions on the account and to investigate the failure to have a current address for the principal officer, failure to have a current treasurer for the PAC, and the failure to file various financial reports required under law for this PAC.
Made by:  Mr. Lee
Seconded by:  Mr. Schneider
Vote:  5-0

5.  Proposed Legislation

The Commission staff will present proposed statutory changes to the Commission.  If approved, the Commission would submit the changes to the Office of the Revisor to be drafted as an agency bill.

Other Business:  None

Executive Session:  None