LWVMD Adopts Positions on 2018 Ballot Initiatives

At its September 6 meeting the LWVMD Board voted to take a position in favor of a ‘Yes’ vote on ballot Question 1 and a 'Yes' vote on Question 2.

Question 1:

The proposed Constitutional amendment would specify that revenue from gambling would be used to supplement rather than supplant other state funding for public education. The amendment phases in specified amounts from gambling revenues that the Governor would be required to include in the state budget for public education (increasing from $125 million in fiscal year 2020 to $375 million in 2022, and an amount equal to 100% of commercial gaming revenue in all following years.

LWVMD has conflicting positions that relate to such an amendment. On the one hand, our education financing position recognizes that “the primary responsibility for funding public elementary and secondary education lies with the state” and supports a “foundation program based on a weighted per pupil formula supported from general state revenues at a level high enough to eliminate inequities.” Essentially, the Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education (the Kirwan Commission) is working to recommend such policies and funding formulas—and additional money will be needed. On the other hand, the League supports a “constitution that is clear, concise and confined to fundamentals” and prefers flexibility in tax policy. Weighing these positions, the board voted to urge a Yes vote on Question 1 to show support for increased state funding for public pre-K-12 education.

Lois Hybl
LWVMD 2nd Vice President

Question 2:

At the same meeting, the LWVMD Board also voted to urge a Yes vote on Question 2 so that the legislature could enact a law permitting qualified citizens to register and vote at a precinct polling place on Election Day. The League has long supported the removal of barriers that may prevent citizens from exercising their fundamental right to vote. If this amendment is adopted, it is expected that the legislature will enact procedures similar to those now used for same-day registration during Early Voting to verify a voter’s eligibility using data from a driver’s license or state-issued identification and this would protect the integrity of the registration process.

You can read much more thoroughly about both of these ballot initiatives at by clicking here.

Ralph Watkins
LWVMD 3rd Vice President