Re: “Our View: Maine’s referendum process may never be the same” (July 9):

Your recent editorial expressing concern about the Legislature’s interference with the referendum process doesn’t go far enough to outline the problems with the current process or to suggest solutions.

While it is important for the citizens to have this method of changing policies, the referendums that were passed last November demonstrate why changes need to be made to the process.

A portion of the ranked-choice voting law is likely unconstitutional, and the voting process has significant costs and practical problems. The marijuana legalization referendum doesn’t adequately address the practical implementation issues. The 3 percent surcharge highlights the unfairness of making tax or budget policy by referendum: Everyone wants someone else to pay for services.

The past and future casino referendums indicate another problem: that out-of-state money can get measures on the ballot that are expensive to defend against. Too often, the case against a ballot measure is not adequately communicated to voters because it is expensive to organize an opposition group.

We will continue to have these problems as long as the current referendum process remains unchanged. The governor and Legislature should establish a nonpartisan, diverse study group including legislators and members of the public to hold hearings, study best practices in other states and report back to the Legislature in January with suggestions for improvements and a proposed constitutional amendment to implement the changes.

Tim Agnew

Portland