Committee Statement Deadlines & Requirements

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MANDATED COMMUNITY NOTICE:

It is required by law that Whatcom County Fire District Seven actively seek any opposition toward the 2019 Capital Improvement Bond, and provide information to direct any opposition to be included in the upcoming voters’ pamphlet. Please use the following deadline information and forms if you are interested in writing an opposition document.

Committee Statement Deadlines & Requirements

2019 Whatcom County Local Voters’ Pamphlets

August 6, 2019 Primary Election

Statement Deadline: Committee Statement Form containing statement is due no later than 4:30 pm,

May 15, 2019.

Rebuttal Deadline: Rebuttal is due no later than 4:30 pm, May 20, 2019.

November 5, 2019 General Election

Statement Deadline: Committee Statement Form containing statement is due no later than 4:30 pm,

August 12, 2019.

Rebuttal Deadline: Rebuttal is due no later than 4:30 pm, August 15, 2019.

Actions by Committee:

  1. Committee prepares the statement according to statement requirements listed below.

Committees appointed to write statements For or Against measures appearing in the local voters’ pamphlet may select other persons to serve as an advisory committee. Persons drafting statements For or Against measures appearing in the voters’ pamphlet who are officers, employees, or representative of any organization may only be designated as such if that organization has taken an official action to support or oppose the measure, as the case may be.

  1. Chair e-mails the “Committee Statement Form” as an attachment to an e-mail by the deadline to: elections@co.whatcom.wa.us

Statement Requirements:

Length

  • 200-word maximum.

  • No more than four (4) paragraphs.

  • All words count (including “a” “I” “of” “on”, etc). Word count will be determined using the Microsoft Word “Word Count” application.

  • If the statement is over the 200-word limit, the Auditor’s Office will attempt to notify the committee Chair with a request to reduce the word count. If there is no reply within 24 hours, the Auditor’s Office will simply remove the words that are in excess from the end of the statement until a sentence break is reached that falls within the word count.

Format & Style

  • Use only italics to emphasize words or phrases.

  • Not allowed: Bolding, underlining, all caps, tables, lists, and bullets.

  • Text must be written in paragraphs.

  • The committee name, if applicable, and committee members’ names will be published. This information is not included in the word count.

Editing

The Auditor’s Office will not correct any errors in spelling, grammar, or punctuation found in the committee’s statement.

Statement Rejections

If the Auditor has any question as to whether any statements may not conform to submission requirements or may contain language which is defamatory or otherwise inappropriate, such questions will be referred to the Prosecuting Attorney. Committees will be notified via email and/or telephone if their statement or any portion of it has been rejected for any reason. Committees will have three (3) days after the rejection notice is sent to submit a re-written statement.

Committees can file an appeal with the Auditor within two (2) days of receiving the notice of rejection. The Prosecuting Attorney will render a decision of the appeal within two (2) days, and the decision will be final. In the event a Prosecuting Attorney participated in the initial review and rejection, a second Prosecuting Attorney will review the statement on appeal. The committee will be notified of the Prosecuting Attorney’s decision.

Rebuttal Statements

Upon receipt of “For” and “Against” statements, the Local Voters’ Pamphlet Coordinator will email copies to the opposing committee’s Chair so that each can write a rebuttal, not to exceed 75 words and one paragraph. Rebuttals are due 3 days after the statement deadline. If the deadline falls on a weekend, the deadline will be the following Monday.

  • The rebuttal statements must address the opposition argument and not inject any new issue.

  • Rebuttal statements will not be shared with the opposing committee until both rebuttals have been received and reviewed.

  • The failure of a “For” or “Against” committee to submit a statement will disqualify that committee from submitting a rebuttal statement.

  • Once submitted, statements and rebuttals cannot be modified or withdrawn.

Public Inspection of Statements

Statements submitted for publication in the local voters’ pamphlet are not available for public inspection or copying until all statements and rebuttals pertaining to the specified ballot measure have been received and reviewed.

Disclaimer

The following statement will be printed at the bottom of each page where statements for or against ballot measures appear. “Statements for, statements against, and rebuttals are the opinions of the authors and have not been checked for accuracy by any government agency.”

If an error or omission occurs, the Auditor, in consultation with the Prosecuting Attorney, will determine the best, most practical remedy. However, the pamphlet will not be reprinted and distributed in its entirety.

Questions

Direct any questions to the Election Division at (360) 778-5102 or e-mail your question(s) to: elections@co.whatcom.wa.us

Additional forms:  Committee Appointment formCommittee Statement form

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