I am frustrated by the mail I recently received requiring me to appear downtown for a hearing in which I will be questioned by unelected citizens who are not city representatives to prove that I am a resident of Waterville (“Hearings on disputed Waterville bag ban ballots scheduled,” April 17).

In 1979, the Supreme Court ruled in Symm v. United States that college students have the right to vote where they attend school. If there was such concern over the votes of Colby students influencing local elections — which is legal — where has the outrage and contestation been for the past 40 years?

It is clear that our votes are being challenged because a select group of people are unhappy with the outcome of the plastic bag ban vote. If narrow margins were the issue at stake, then Colby votes would have been contested when Mayor Nick Isgro narrowly escaped recall by a 91-vote margin last summer.

The challengers before whom I will appear on May 1 missed the deadline to file their case with the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. Why does their lack of planning and foresight necessitate an urgent situation on my part? I do not believe I should have to move my schedule around in order to accommodate a nearly two-hour hearing set to prove something I and the city clerk have already proved — that I attend full-time school here.

 

Noa Gutow-Ellis

Waterville


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