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Public comment period open on Universal Home Care ballot initiative

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Maine Heritage Policy Center (MHPC) chief executive officer Matthew Gagnon has sent a letter to Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap urging him to modify the language of the Universal Home Care ballot initiative that Maine voters will consider this November.

On May 16, the Secretary of State’s office opened the 30-day public comment period that allows members of the public to make suggestions on the final language that appears before voters. In the interest of giving Maine people a more accurate understanding of what this initiative entails, Gagnon has requested that Secretary Dunlap spell out who is being taxed under this initiative and how the taxes are being assessed. His full letter with MHPC’s suggested language can be found here.

State law requires Secretary Dunlap to present the question ‘concisely and intelligibly.’ Secretary Dunlap will accept public comment on the ballot language until 5 p.m. on June 15, 2018. Comments are accepted via email, mail, or in person:

To submit via email, send your comments to sos.office@maine.gov with the subject line “public comment.”
To submit via traditional mail, send your comments to the Secretary of State, Attn: Public Comment, 148 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0148.
To submit in person, individuals may drop off written comments at the Nash School Building, 103 Sewall St., 2nd Floor, Augusta ME.

MHPC strongly encourages you to email the Secretary of State today and respectfully suggest that the wording of the ballot question read as follows:

“Do you want to establish three new taxes on income earned over the threshold subject to social security employment tax ($128,400 in 2018); two taxes totaling 3.8 percent on employers and employees for wages earned and paid out over the threshold, and an additional 3.8 percent tax on all other forms of income earned over the threshold, for the purpose of funding the Universal Home Care program, which will provide services to people with disabilities and senior citizens who need assistance in their homes regardless of income?”

This language informs Maine voters what taxes are being collected and who they are being collected from in order to provide services under the Universal Home Care program.
We thank the Secretary of State’s office for allowing public comment before the final language is approve and hope Secretary Dunlap considers these modifications for the November ballot.

About Maine Heritage Policy Center

The Maine Heritage Center is Maine's pre-eminent free-market policy Think Tank. Based in Portland, MHPC has been advocating for limited government for the people of Maine for more than a decade.

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