The Montana Secretary of State's office has mailed out an addendum to the voter information pamphlet at a total cost of over $265,000.
Christi Jacobsen, chief of staff for Secretary of State Corey Stapleton, said in an email Friday that the text in the pamphlet is accurate. But in several instances language should be underlined or have a line through the middle of the word. That’s an important distinction, because underlined words are proposed new statutory language, while stricken words are proposed to be removed from the statute.
The digital copy of the Voter Information Pamphlet has been updated with the correct formatting on the Secretary of State’s website, www.sosmt.gov.
I-185 raises taxes on all tobacco products by $2 for a pack of cigarettes. If it’s passed by voters Nov. 6, it will eliminate the sunset date for expanded Medicaid services for low-income Montanans, which otherwise ends June 30, 2019. It will also fund some veterans’ services, smoking prevention and cessation programs and long-term care services for seniors and people with disabilities.
I-186 requires the Department of Environmental Quality to deny a permit for any new hardrock mines in Montana unless the reclamation plan provides clear and convincing evidence that the mine will not require perpetual treatment of water polluted by acid mine drainage or other contaminants.
In her email, Jabcobsen said 471,000 copies of the addendum were published at a cost of almost 7 cents each, for a total cost of nearly $33,000.
Department of Administration spokeswoman Amber Conger said a Billings company won the bid on the rush job. The costs included just over $28,000 for mail preparation and over $204,000 for postage.
The online version of the pamphlet has been updated.
Counties mailed out absentee ballots Friday.