A new poll shows 56% of Mainers plan to reject Question 3, the proposal to create a nonprofit utility to replace Central Maine Power and Versant Power.
The Pine Tree State Poll, conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center, found that 31% plan to vote yes on the question and 13% are unsure, according to results released Wednesday.
Question 3 on the Nov. 7 ballot is one of eight referenda to be decided by voters. It has attracted the most spending and most television advertising — by far — of all the measures.
Campaign finance reports show opponents — namely CMP and Versant — have spent about $35 million in opposition to Question 3, while supporters have spent about $1 million.
The poll surveyed 795 Maine residents between Oct. 19 and Oct. 23. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points.
Opposition to the proposal spanned the political spectrum, the poll found. Seventy-three percent of Republicans said they plan to vote no, 64% of independents voting no and 47% of Democrats also in the no column.
The next highest profile issue is Question 4, which would require auto manufacturers to provide remote access to mechanical data to local vehicle repair shops. An overwhelming majority— 76% — say they plan to vote yes, with 5% voting no and 20% unsure.
On Question 2, which would prohibit foreign government entities from spending money on Maine referendum campaigns, 75% of respondents say they will vote yes, with 8% opposed and 17% unsure.
On Question 1, which would require a statewide vote for projects that would require more than $1 billion in borrowing, 59% of voters say they will vote yes, 16% no and 25% are unsure.
For Questions 5-8, voters told the pollsters they don’t have enough information to make a decision.
Question 5 proposes to change the period of time for judicial review of written petitions, which is designed to give state election workers more time to complete review of citizen initiative signatures.
Question 6 proposes to require all sections of the Maine Constitution to be printed. Maine’s tribal leaders are pushing for the change because one of the sections that is no longer printed references treaties that transferred from Massachusetts to Maine when Maine became a state.
Question 7 proposes to remove language in the constitution that requires those who circulate petitions to be Maine residents and registered Maine voters. Those requirements have been deemed unconstitutional.
Question 8 proposes to remove language in the constitution that prohibits a person under guardianship for reasons of mental illness from voting. That too has been found unconstitutional.
In-person, no-excuse absentee voting has begun in many Maine communities. The polls will be open on Election Day, Nov. 7, until 8 p.m.