Committee Disagrees On An Act To Amend the Laws Governing the Political Party Representation of Election

There are disagreements between members of the Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee regarding LD 514 and a Divided Report is expected for the legislature.

Current law has municipal officers filling Election Clerk positions between people enrolled in one of the two major parties.  LD 514 would require that a third of Election Clerks be Republican party members, a third Democrat party members and a third to unaffiliated/non-major party members.

The idea is that since such a large number of Mainers do not belong to either major party, the specific requirement for political party membership to serve as an election clerk is antiquated.  Furthermore, some towns have trouble filling the necessary election clerk positions as is and it is believed this bill would relieve some of that problem.

Seven groups/individuals submitted testimony in favor of LD 514, including the Maine Town & City Clerks Association.  Representative John Schneck (D-Bangor) also spoke in favor but with multiple amendment suggestions, including removing any mention of 1/3 requirements.