For Immediate Release
March 10, 2023
Michael S. Garrity, Director of Communications
firstname.lastname@example.org | (603) 931-9375
Matthew G. Conley, Attorney, Election Law Unit
Matthew.G.Conley@doj.nh.gov | (866) 868-3703
Concord, NH – Attorney John M. Formella provides the following update to this week's press releases regarding political advertising that does not identify who is responsible for it:
In Amherst, an identified party has published the website "amhersttoday.net" which includes endorsements of town and school candidates and opposition to warrant articles on the March 14 town and school district elections but violates RSA 664:14. The website states that it is "provided by concerned Amherst citizens who wish to remain anonymous." The Election Law Unit investigated this matter and spoke with Tim Kachmar, of Amherst, who confirmed that he is responsible for the website. The website is being updated to include Mr. Kachmar's name.
In Haverhill, an unidentified party has issued a mailer, which includes opposition to two warrant articles that will be considered at the March 18 Haverhill Town Meeting, that violates RSA 664:14. The mailer does not identify the party responsible for sending the mailer but uses a United States Postal permit from Manchester, New Hampshire. The Election Law Unit is investigating this matter and has determined that the Postal permit belongs to Spectrum Printing. As of this time, we have requested Spectrum Printing disclose the name of the party that paid for the mailer and are awaiting a response.
In Epping, an organization named "Epping Residents for Government Integrity" issued a mailer, entitled "The Epping Taxing Times," which includes endorsements of candidates and opposition to warrant articles on the March 14 ballot but violates RSA 664:14. The mailer and the website it references do not provide information including the name of a person responsible for the political advertising. The Election Law Unit determined that Diane Gilbert, of Epping, is responsible for this political advertising. The website is being updated to include Ms. Gilbert's name.
In Wilton and Lyndeborough a mailer was sent out supporting school board candidates "Brianne Lavallee" and "Cynthia Diane Foss" without proper language identifying who sent it. The Election Law Unit spoke with School Board Candidate Cynthia Dianne Foss, of Wilton, who confirmed that she and Brianne Lavallee, of Lyndeborough, are responsible for the mailer sent to residents in Wilton and Lyndeborough. The Election Law Unit educated Ms. Foss about the statute that requires the identifying language. Ms. Foss agreed to share the information with Ms. Lavallee.
In each of these matters, the political advertising did not contain information identifying the party that paid for or distributed them. Under New Hampshire law, political advertising that does not have the required disclosure information can be removed by municipal maintenance personnel and law enforcement.
As the elections are so close, the identities of these individuals may not be known prior to the elections. As a result, Attorney General Formella reminds voters to do their own research on candidates and warrant articles before they vote.
New Hampshire Department of Justice
33 Capitol Street | Concord, NH | 03301