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Abbreviations & Terms

Maine Statutes on
Ballot Questions

Maine's Statutory Provisions for the Citizen Initiative and People's Veto
Last updated: September 2017

Introduction

Constitutional provisions for citizen initiated legislation and the people’s veto were implemented in Maine in 1908. In 1931, the Legislature enacted statutes governing the process of filing and circulating petitions for these legislative mechanisms.




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Year LD Amendments Session Law MRS Sections
Affected
Legislative Record Committee Files / News /
Study Reports
Full LD
History
1931 LD 523

An Act to Regulate the Preparation of Petitions for People's Veto and Direct Initiative as Authorized by Article Thirty-One of the Constitution
N/A PL 1931, c. 181 Codified as:
RS 1944, c. 7, §§1-5
No debate. N/A N/A
1953 LD 926

An Act Amending the Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

#166
#551
PL 1953, c. 365 Amended:
RS 1944, c. 7, §4
Senate, May 2, 1953
p. 2062
N/A N/A
1961 LD 1460

An Act Revising the Election Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 1614
N/A PL 1961, c. 360 Enacted:
RS 1954, c. 3-A, §66
RS 1954, c. 3-A, §§164-166

Repealed:
RS 1954, c. 8, §§1-5
Senate, June 1, 1961
p. 2703
N/A N/A
1961 LD 1694

An Act to Clarify the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

S-310
PL 1961, c. 408 Amended:
RS 1954, c. 3-A, §166
No debate. N/A N/A
1965 LD 1310

An Act to Correct Errors and Inconsistencies in the Public Laws

Enacted with amendments:

H-412
S-288
Committee amendment "A" (LD 1589)
PL 1965, c. 425 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1965 LD 1648

An Act Relating to the Laws Governing Elections and Voting Machines
N/A PL 1965, c. 451 Amended:
21 MRS §1351
No debate. N/A N/A
1967 LD 620

An Act to Revise the Election Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 1539
Enacted with amendments:

H-100
H-173
PL 1967, c. 225 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1969 LD 1148

An Act Relating to Residents of Write-in Candidates on Ballots
N/A PL 1969, c. 194 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1971 LD 151

An Act Clarifying and Revising Certain Elections Laws
Enacted with amendment:

S-9
PL 1971, c. 65 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1971 LD 838

An Act to Regulate the Statement Setting Forth the Total Necessary to Retire all Outstanding Bonds on Ballots for Bond Issues
N/A PL 1971, c. 147 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1971 LD 1707, IB 2

An Act Relating to Forms of Ballots in General Elections
N/A 1971 IB Amended:
21 MRS §702(2)(C)

Repealed and Replaced:
21 MRS §702(1)
21 MRS §702(2)(A), (B)

Repealed:
21 MRS §702(2)(D)
Senate, April 30, 1971
p. 2085-2091

House, May 3, 1971
p. 2099-2108

Senate, May 25, 1971
p. 3156-3162

House, May 26, 1971
p. 3173-3175

House, January 28, 1972
p. 67

House, February 1, 1972
p. 92-98

Senate, February 1, 1972
p. 105

Senate, February 2, 1972
p. 117-122

Senate, February 3, 1972
p. 141-142

House, February 4, 1972
p. 149-150

Senate, February 4, 1972
p. 152

House, February 7, 1972
p. 169

Senate, February 10, 1972
p. 235-236

House, February 17, 1972
p. 330-331

Senate, February 17, 1972
p. 332
Court Opinion:  Kelly v. Curtis, 287 A. 2d 426 (1972) N/A
1973 LD 556

An Act to Revise the Election Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 1535

OTP-ND:
LD 1916
Enacted with amendments:

H-377
H-381
S-139
PL 1973, c. 414 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1973 LD 591

An Act Relating to Content of Ballots
Enacted with amendment:

H-80
PL 1973, c. 160 Amended:
21 MRS §702
House, March 12, 1973
p. 798-799
N/A N/A
1973 LD 2530

An Act Relating to Elections to the House of Representatives
N/A PL 1973, c. 720 Amended:
21 MRS §702
House, February 26, 1974
p. 929-935
N/A N/A
1975 LD 2200

An Act to Clarify Election Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 2344
Enacted with amendments:

H-1230
H-1270
PL 1975, c. 761 Amended:
21 MRS §702
House, April 7, 1976
p. 1010-1013

House, April 12, 1976
p. 1072-1073

House, April 12, 1976
p. 1080-1081

House, April 12, 1976
p. 1088
N/A N/A
1975 LD 2203

An Act Relating to Initiatives and Referendum Processes
Enacted with amendments:

H-954
H-992
S-426
PL 1975, c. 682 Enacted:
21 MRS §1354
21 MRS §1355

Amended:
21 MRS §1351
Senate, March 12, 1976
p. 451-452

House, March 17, 1976
p. 492-493

House, March 18, 1976
p. 521

Senate, March 23, 1976
p. 618
N/A N/A
1975 LD 2233

An Act Relating to the Form of Ballots
N/A PL 1975, c. 730 Amended:
21 MRS §702
House, March 31, 1976
p. 846-847
N/A N/A
1977 LD 1201

An Act to Clarify Election Related Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 1887
Enacted with amendments:

H-742
H-794
PL 1977, c. 496 Amended:
21 MRS §1351
House, June 30, 1977
p. 2201-2202
N/A N/A
1979 LD 842

An Act to Amend the Forms of Election Ballots to Omit the Secretary of State's Name under Certain Conditions
Enacted with amendment:

S-133
PL 1979, c. 263 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1983 LD 241

An Act to Clarify the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

H-282
PL 1983, c. 425 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. N/A N/A
1983 LD 1059

An Act Concerning Explanations for Referenda Questions which Appear on a Ballot

OTP-ND:
LD 1663
N/A PL 1983, c. 410 Enacted:
21 MRS §702-A

Amended:
21 MRS §1351
No debate. N/A N/A
1983 LD 1552

An Act to Make Corrections of Errors and Inconsistencies in the Laws of Maine

OTP-ND:
LD 1760
N/A PL 1983, c. 480 Amended:
21 MRS §702
No debate. Committee File:  Yes N/A
1985 LD 576

An Act to Recodify the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

S-52
PL 1985, c. 161 Enacted:
21-A MRS §§901-906

Repealed:
21 MRS §702
21 MRS §702-A
21 MRS §§1351-1355
No debate. Committee File:  Yes N/A
1987 LD 289

An Act Relating to Questions Put to the Electorate at Referendum
Enacted with amendment:

S-39
PL 1987, c. 119 Repealed and Replaced:
21-A MRS §906(6)

Amended:
21-A MRS §905
Senate, April 30, 1987
p. 665-670
Committee File:  Yes

News:
  "McKernan signs bill on referendum wording." Portland Press Herald, 5/14/1987.
N/A
1987 LD 407

An Act to Amend Certain Election Laws

OTP-ND:
LD 1569
N/A PL 1987, c. 188 Amended:
21-A MRS §906
No debate. Committee File:  Yes N/A
1989 LD 697

An Act to Require Municipalities to Permit the Circulation of Petitions on Local Issues
Enacted with amendment:

S-40
PL 1989, c. 92 Enacted:
21-A MRS §903-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes N/A
1991 LD 2019

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

H-1187*
S-617*
S-770*
PL 1991, c. 862 Amended:
21-A MRS §901(4)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1993 LD 1477

An Act to Implement the Recommendations of the Special Commission on Electoral Practices
Enacted with amendment:

H-707
PL 1993, c. 473 Amended:
21-A MRS §906(1)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1993 LD 1488

An Act to Clarify the Process for a Direct Initiative of Legislation and to Simplify Questions Presented to the Voters at a Referendum
Enacted with amendment:

H-497
PL 1993, c. 352 Amended:
21-A MRS §901
21-A MRS §905
21-A MRS §906
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1993 LD 1609

An Act to Clarify Maine Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

H-947
S-557
S-612
PL 1993, c. 695 Amended:
21-A MRS §901
21-A MRS §903-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1993 LD 1931

An Act to Promote Integrity in the Citizens Petition Process
Enacted with amendments:

H-881
S-542
PL 1993, c. 599 Enacted:
21-A MRS §904-A
21-A MRS §904-B
House, March 23, 1994
p. H-1734-H-1738

House, March 24, 1994
p. H-1791-H-1793

Senate, March 28, 1994
p. S-1709-S-1711
Committee File:  Yes

News:  The Law Library has numerous articles related to this legislation. Please contact a Reference Librarian.
Yes
1995 LD 1461

An Act to Update and Clarify the Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

H-501*
H-524*
PL 1995, c. 459 Amended:
21-A MRS §906(1)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1997 LD 440

An Act to Require Responsibility of the Employers of Persons who Collect Signatures
N/A PL 1997, c. 61 Amended:
21-A MRS §904-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1997 LD 1917

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

S-451
PL 1997, c. 581 Amended:
21-A MRS §901
21-A MRS §902
21-A MRS §906
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
1997 LD 2082

An Act to Improve the Integrity of the Citizen Initiative Process
Enacted with amendment:

H-938
PL 1997, c. 637 Amended:
21-A MRS §903-A
House, March 19, 1998
p. H-1760-H-1762
Committee File:  Yes Yes
2001 LD 1042

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

H-527
PL 2001, c. 310 Amended:
21-A MRS §906(1-A)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2001 LD 2023

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

H-776
S-422
PL 2001, c. 516 Repealed:
21-A MRS §904-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes

Court Opinion:  On Our Terms '97 PAC, et al. v. Secretary of State of State of Maine, 101 F. Supp. 2d 19 (D. Me. 1999)
Yes
2005 LD 929

An Act to Create Freedom of Citizen Information Regarding Ballot Questions and Political Action Committees
Enacted with amendments:

H-412
H-503
PL 2005, c. 356 Enacted:
21-A MRS §901-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2006 LD 2029

An Act to Implement the Recommendations of the Commission to Study Alternative Voting Procedures, the Citizen Initiative Process and Minor Party Ballot Access
Enacted with amendment:

S-526
PL 2005, c. 575 Enacted:
21-A MRS §903-A(3)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2007 LD 176

An Act to Provide Notice to the General Public About Proposed Initiative Questions
Enacted with amendment:

S-114
PL 2007, c. 234 Enacted:
21-A MRS §905-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2007 LD 1761

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

H-489
S-389
PL 2007, c. 455 Repealed and Replaced:
21-A MRS §904
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2009 LD 235

An Act to Modify the Citizen Initiative Process
Enacted with amendment:

H-435
PL 2009, c. 341 Amended:
21-A MRS §901(5)
21-A MRS §901-A
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2009 LD 1169

An Act to Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendment:

H-311*
PL 2009, c. 253,
§§57-59
Amended:
21-A MRS §901
21-A MRS §901(3-A)

Repealed:
21-A MRS §906(2)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2010 LD 1730

An Act To Strengthen the Ballot Initiative Process
Enacted with amendments:

S-443
S-481
S-487
PL 2009, c. 611 Enacted:
21-A MRS §902-A
21-A MRS §903-C

Amended:
21-A MRS §901-A(2)
21-A MRS §902
21-A MRS §905(1)
21-A MRS §905(2)
House, March 30, 2010
p. H-1314-H-1315

Senate, March 22, 2010
p. S-1533-S-1539

Senate, March 26, 2010
p. S-1650-S-1651

Senate, March 26, 2010
p. S-1655
Committee File:  Yes Yes
2011 LD 1000

Resolve, Directing the Secretary of State to Examine Centralization of the Petition Signature Verification Process
Enacted with amendment:

H-507
Res. 2011, c. 75 N/A House, June 6, 2011
p. H-727
Committee File:  Yes

Study Report:  Report pursuant to Chapter 75 of the Resolves of 2011, entitled, "Resolve, Directing the Secretary of State to Examine Centralization of the Petition Signature Verification Process" (2012)
Yes
2011 LD 1528

An Act to Amend the Election Laws and Other Related Laws
Enacted with amendment:

H-474
PL 2011, c. 342 Amended:
21-A MRS §902
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2013 LD 1615

An Act To Amend the Election Laws
Enacted with amendments:

H-620
H-662
PL 2013, c. 457 Repealed:
21-A MRS §906(3)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes Yes
2015 LD 176

An Act To Amend the Law Governing the Gathering of Signatures for Direct Initiatives and People's Veto Referenda
Enacted with amendment:

H-98
PL 2015, c. 99 Amended:
21-A MRS §903-A
21-A MRS §903-C(1)
No debate. Committee File:  Yes

News:  "Opposing sides in Maine's 2014 bear-baiting referendum square off over ballot bill." Portland Press Herald, 2/26/2015, p. A1, A5.

News:  "Bill closes loophole in signature gathering process." Kennebec Journal, 3/10/2015, p. A5.

News:  "SAM-supported bill attacks Maine initiative process." Kennebec Journal, 3/11/2015, p. A7.
Yes
2017 LD 1323

An Act To Amend the Direct Initiative Signature Gathering Process
Enacted with amendment:

H-405
PL 2017, c. 277 Enacted:
21-A MRS §903-D

Amended:
21-A MRS §902
21-A MRS §905(1)
Not yet available. Not yet available. N/A