Maine Department of Education Commissioner Robert G. Hasson Jr. has determined that the Board of Directors for Regional School Unit 3 is out of compliance with state law, and the district must establish a reapportionment committee.

In a letter dated March 19, the commissioner wrote that "… the current Board of Directors of Regional School Unit No. 3 … is not apportioned in accordance with the principles of one-man, one-vote."

The voting discrepancy was brought to light by retired long-time educator Wayne Suomi, who lives in Unity. He pointed out Unity's population of 2,000 is twice as large, yet the town has been allowed the same single vote on the district's Board of Directors as the district's 10 other towns.

"Taxpayers in Unity have been disenfranchised since the '60s," Suomi said in a previous interview with The Republican Journal. "I would like to see it changed to a weighted vote, according to population size."

According to the commissioner's letter, the district must create a reapportionment committee.

In a letter dated March 22 to all municipal officers in RSU 3, Superintendent Paul Austin stated, "The Board of Directors of Regional School Unit 3 have been ordered to create a reapportionment committee, charged with developing a new apportionment plan to meet compliance standards.

"The committee must meet within 20 days of this notice, and a reapportionment plan must be submitted to the Commissioner of Education within 90 days of the committee's first meeting."

This committee must consist of one municipal officer and one citizen at large from each member municipality, chosen by the municipal officers, and one director from the municipality, chosen by the Board of Directors.

The appointments will be made prior to the first meeting of the committee, which will take place Tuesday, April 3, from 6 to 8 p.m. in room M111 at the Mount View school complex in Thorndike.