Maine Alliance for Road Associations
Attached is the State and Local Government Committee Amendment of LD 461 that was "Passed to be enacted" by the Maine House and Senate on June 22, 2023, and sent to the Governor for her signature.
After reading this amended version, I asked Roberta Manter, our Legislative Liaison, the following questions:
1. If all goes well and the governor permits passage of LD 461, about what date will the current statute be revised to include the new amendments. Will it be in time for the Oct 7th conference? I would love to have attorneys discuss the new statute!
2. What does the addition of “for 8 years” in §3101 B. do for us?
3. Re §3104: Will the new 6 year extension be retroactive to include all NOCs back to 2018? I think that is what the new wording now says.
1) I am not an attorney. What follows is my opinion based on my legislative knowledge and experience only. No one knows when this legislative session is going to adjourn. They actually did adjourn in March, which should mean that all the legislation that passes now should go into effect immediately because it's already over 90 days since then. HOWEVER, they had not actually finished their business, as claimed for the adjournment, so they immediately re-convened and are still working on things. They are currently taking 4th of July weekend off, and then will continue their work. They will probably say we have to wait 90 days after whenever they finally do convene, so it's anybody's guess. In order for the law to be in effect by the Conference, they would have to adjourn by the end of this week. I don't know if that will happen or not. But even if the law is not in effect before the conference, it will be imminent and there would be no reason why John and Mary cannot comment on it.
2) Under current law, a road association is not allowed to repair pavement that was put in after July 1, 2007. The thought at the time that law was passed was that road associations would not be paving roads after that date, and the law allowed repair of pavement that already existed. They didn't take into account the possibility that a developer could pave a road before turning it over to a road association - which is exactly what has happened in some situations, including my daughter's road. They now have 16 year old pavement that is badly in need of repair, and the law prohibits them from doing anything about it. The amendment will allow repair of pavement that is at least 8 years old.
3) As I understand it, the new law will NOT extend old Notices of Claim. It would be lovely if it did, and if the person who owes believes it will, I'm not going to tell them otherwise. But a law cannot change what was done in the past. (That's "ex post facto law," and I could give you examples of how applying laws retroactively has resulted in gross injustice with regard to discontinued roads.) If a Notice of Claim was filed under the law that made it expire in 18 months, then it expires in 18 months. But if it is renewed before it expires, I believe the renewal will be good for 6 years. If John and Mary have a different opinion, I'd love to hear it.
Please ask questions!
Andrew L. Allen, Administrator, Maine Alliance for Road Associations
It's official - L.D. 461 has become law without the Governor's signature! It will go into effect 90 days after Legislative Session Adjourns.
I am trying to figure out the effective date of LD 461 and appreciate the answer that was given earlier. I hope you could clarify a little more, sorry for inconvenience.
I read on legislature Maine.gov
”the general effective date ..for laws passed in the First Regular session is June 29, 2023
”the general effective date..for laws passed in the First Special session is Oct 25, 2023
Was LD 461 passed in the regular session or the special session?
The law itself has a date on it of July 6, 2023.
Thank you very much.
Sorry, but one more thing, that website says Closure for the 2nd regular session has been established as Sep 29, 2023. This isn’t the adjournment you referred to is it? So effective date 90 days after Sept 29?
According to the Maine Legislature's Official Website, "The general effective date for nonemergency laws passed in the First Special Session of the 131st Legislature is Wednesday, October 25, 2023."
L.D. 461 is considered a nonemergency law, and it was passed in the First Special Session.
The Maine Alliance for Road Associations