UPDATE 2/27: More than 600 people submitted testimony in support of LD 2007! Read the public testimony here. Thank you! While we await the work session, now is the time to send your testimony to your legislators (find out how to do that here) and turn it into a letter to the editor (find out how to do that here)! 

Legislators will hold a public hearing at 10 am Monday, February 26 on LD 2007, a bill to restore the inherent right of the Wabanaki Nations in Maine to self-govern within their respective territories in accordance with the same federal laws that generally govern tribal lands elsewhere in the United States. Supporters of this legislation can help secure its passage by submitting written testimony in favor of the bill or speaking at the public hearing. Submitting written testimony is easy and done online. Find tips below and plan to watch the hearing on YouTube.

If you represent one of the more than 250 allied businesses and organizations, you are also encouraged to deliver your written testimony in person during the public hearing. 

Jump to a specific section in this guide:

» Writing your testimony
» How to submit your written testimony
» How to testify live during the public hearing
» Tips for testifying in person or via Zoom
» Template for written testimony
» Repurpose your testimony


 Writing your testimony

    • Make it personal. Testimony is most effective when it’s personal. Why is restoring tribal self-governance important to you? We know that when the Wabanaki thrive, all Mainers thrive. How might you, your family, and your community benefit from LD 2007? Use specific examples.
    • Be specific. You don’t need to address everything in the bill, but you should highlight a few key elements about what the legislation would accomplish and why it’s needed. Need a little background? Find it in our LD 2007 FAQ
    • Keep it brief. Your testimony should be brief, about a page long, and to the point. Select an issue you feel most strongly about and show the committee why it matters to you. Speak from your heart. 
    • Still not sure where to start? Take a look at our LD 2007 Talking Points for ideas.
    • Go the distance. After you’ve submitted your testimony, email a copy to your legislators. Find them and their contact information in the Maine Voter Lookup. Share your testimony with Gov. Janet Mills. Find her contact info here. You can also rework your testimony as a letter to the editor. Find out how to do that in our LTE Guide.
    • Use our template. Find a template below for information to include at the beginning and end of your written testimony


How to submit your written testimony

You may submit written testimony as soon as the public hearing for LD 2007 has been set. We suggest submitting your testimony no later than the morning of the hearing.

    • To submit written testimony, visit  https://www.mainelegislature.org/testimony/   
    • Select “public hearing”
    • Select “Judiciary” as the committee hearing this bill.
    • Select February 26 as the day of the hearing
    • Select the bill — LD 2007.
    • If you want to testify orally during the public hearing via Zoom, check the box next to “I would like to testify electronically over Zoom” at the same time you submit your written testimony. If you plan to testify in person at the State House, you can skip this step. (We ask that you submit written testimony even if you are planning to deliver it live during the hearing.)
    • If you selected the Zoom option, you will see “Please select your position on the proposed legislation.” Choose the first option, “I am for the proposed legislation.”
    • Enter your testimony, by uploading a PDF or by copying the text and pasting it into the testimony field.
    • Enter your name and contact information, check the “captcha” box, and select “submit/register.”
    • Find tips below on how to testify at the hearing in person or via Zoom.

Your written testimony will be shared with members of the committee, be added to the bill website, and become part of the bill’s permanent legislative record. While you can submit testimony at any time and it will be shared with committee members and become part of the public record, only testimony submitted online by midnight on the day of the bill’s public hearing will be included on the bill’s web page.


How to testify live during the hearing

If you represent an allied business or organization, we encourage you to deliver your testimony live during the public hearing at 10 am on Monday, February 26. You may deliver your testimony in person at the State House or via Zoom. Find instructions and tips below for delivering your testimony during a hearing. 


Tips for testifying in person or via Zoom:

    • Be patient. We are expecting a lot of supporters of LD 2007 to testify, which means it could be a while before it’s your turn. 
    • Practice. Oral testimony submitted in person or via Zoom is usually limited to 3 minutes, so you may need to shorten your written testimony. Practice before the hearing to make sure you have the timing down. 
    • Speaking order. The Committee Chair will usually hear first from the bill sponsor, then legislators, then people in support of the bill, then people opposed to the bill. 
    • Assistance is available. People with special needs who require accommodations to participate in a hearing should contact the Legislative Information Office as soon as possible by phone (207) 287-1692 or email lio@legislature.maine.gov.
    • More info. Find more tips and information about testifying at a public hearing on the Maine Legislature’s website.


Tips for testifying in person:

    • To testify in person, plan to arrive at plan to arrive at State House, Room 438 by 9:30 am. The line to pass through security could be long. Please plan accordingly. 
    • The Committee Chair will usually hear from the bill sponsor, then legislators, then people in support of the bill, then people opposed to the bill. 
    • You usually will not have to register in advance to deliver testimony in person, just stand up and go to the podium (you will need to sign in your name and town or organization when you get there).
    • If you plan to testify in person, you are asked to bring 20 copies of your testimony to distribute to committee members.


Tips for testifying via Zoom:

    • Register for the hearing. When you submit your written testimony, check the box “I would like to testify electronically over Zoom,” which can be found just above the entry field for your testimony. After you register, you will receive an email with instructions for joining by Zoom. You must register at least 30 minutes before the hearing begins.
    • Sound check. Before the hearing, test your video and audio to make sure you can be heard and seen. 
    • When it’s your turn. People waiting in the ‘Zoom Room’ to raise their electronic hand until called on. Once you are called on, there is usually a short pause while you are transferred from the waiting room into the committee room. 


Template for written testimony

To: Sen. Carney, Rep. Moonen, and members of the Joint Standing Committee on Judiciary
Re: Support for LD 2007, An Act to Advance Self-determination for Wabanaki Nations
Intro: Sen. Carney, Rep. Moonen and members of the Judiciary Committee, my name is (your name) and I live in (your town). (If you are testifying on behalf of an organization, state that here.) I am here to testify in support of LD 2007.
Testimony: (Make your case for LD 2007 here. See above for tips for effective testimony.)
Closing: Thank the committee members and succinctly summarize your take-home message.



Repurpose your written testimony