AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine towns will be able to ban sex offenders from any state or municipal park, athletic field or recreational facility serving children.
A new law allows municipalities to prohibit sex offenders from coming within 750 feet of such property. Officials in Madawaska had argued that state law only allowed municipalities to ban such individuals who come near property leased to nonprofits.
Republican Gov. Paul LePage signed Democratic Rep. Roland Martin’s bill into law on April 18, and it will take effect three months after lawmakers return to Augusta to consider LePage’s vetoes.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Maine opposed the original bill and said there’s no evidence that sex offender residency restrictions work. They argued that research shows family members and acquaintances commit most sex crimes against children.
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