Only 15 DAYS Remain
Until the Signature Deadline

We want to remind you that the deadline for turning in your petitions to city and town clerks is fifteen days away: not later than 5:00 PM on Wednesday, June 21st. Time for getting those signatures is quickly running out.

Last Sunday Steve Olson of Abington reported that he got 265 signatures at Nantasket Beach in Hull. He added that people were very receptive, and he got to spend the day at the beach!

Chip Faulkner was also out last weekend and is up to 538 signatures, in case anyone is competing with the Chipster for #1 in the spring drive! (He came in second in total signatures collected last fall to Bob Casimiro's astonishing 2,700-plus.)

After coming this far, it sure would be a shame to fall flat in the final stretch, wouldn't it?

'We're counting on each and every one of you to pick up part of the load, do your part, and make sure this final push is a success and the promised tax rollback is on the November ballot!

Thanks one and all. Every signatures will count!

The latest news on the federal lawsuit challenging new U.S. Postal Service regulations barring petitioners, of which CLT is one of the plaintiffs, follows last month's state revenue figures from the Department of Revenue.

As of today, thanks to the Initiative & Referendum Institute's negotiations, it is legal at least for now to petition in front of post offices again. But Dane Waters, executive director of the I&R Institute has some advice and a request. Please read it and comply before attempting to petition at your local post office.

In the DOR report for the state's May revenue take, you'll see that the good times continue to roll in Taxachusetts! "May 2000 totaled $1.63 billion, an increase of $455 million or 38.6 percent from last May," DOR Commissioner Laskey reported, adding, "Year-to-date revenue collections totaled $13.91 billion, up $1.17 billion or 9.2 percent above last year."

Chip Ford

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If you were NOT a CLT volunteer petitioner last fall and want to help us help you now

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Initiative & Referendum Institute
1825 I Street, NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 429-5539 (office) - (202) 986-3001 (fax)

M. Dane Waters - (202) 429-5539

"Pursuant with agreement, the parties have agreed as follows: (1) there will be no hearing on the Motion for Temporary Restraining Order; (2) there will be no hearing on the Motion for Preliminary Injunction; (3) the parties have agreed to proceed directly to trial on the merits; and (4) the USPS has agreed NOT to enforce its regulation prior to July 31 (the directive to Postmasters will be issued first thing Monday, June 5; thus, to be safe, signature gathering on postal property should not begin before Tuesday, June 6); the parties have agreed to the following briefing schedule:

a.  the government will move for summary judgment on or before June 13;

b.  the plaintiffs will cross move for summary judgment and oppose the government's motion on or before June 23;

c.  the government will oppose plaintiffs' motion and reply in support of its motion on or before June 30th, and;

d.  plaintiffs will reply on or before July 7.

Trial is to be prior to July 13. The date of the trail and presiding judge have not yet been identified.

The Court will speak to us again on Monday to fix the trial date and identify the judge.

The foregoing accomplishes precisely the objectives that we had hoped to achieve when we filed this action. That is, we have obtained interim relief against enforcement of the regulation, avoided the necessity for interim TRO and PI proceedings, and fixed an early date for trial on the merits and prompt resolution."

This is very good news but I must stress several points.

a.  Do not start petitioning prior to Tuesday, June 6, 2000.

b.  We were only seeking relief for the collection of signatures on initiative and/or referendum petitions -- this does not mean that you can collect signatures on candidate petitions.

c.  The post office still has the authority to ask petitioners to leave the premises for disruptive behavior so if you are being disruptive in any way they can legally ask you to leave.

d.  I would strongly urge you and your petitioners to be as nice as possible when petitioning on postal property. I would hate to go into court for trial and the USPS present numerous examples of how petitioners were unruly, etc. Let's not give them any help in trying to make their case. On the contrary if we can show them how orderly petitioners are when petitioning the stronger our case will be.

This is good news but we still have a long way to go. The case is far from over and we still have to make our case in court.

Let's use this opportunity to get the issues you are working on onto the ballot (which is why we sought the TRO and PI). But be careful and use common sense. It may take a few days for word to trickle to the Postmasters. Please do not be confrontational.

Many thanks and good luck.

M. Dane Waters

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