Voters in New England will have more to decide on Tuesday than just who is the next President.
In most states in the region, voters will also face an array of ballot questions, including bonding measures.
While Vermont voters have no ballot questions this year and New Hampshire and Massachusetts have a light load, Maine, Rhode Island, and Connecticut have much to consider.
Maine has six questions on the ballot that, if passed, would authorize up to $49 million of additional general obligation bonding for 1993. The moneys would be used to finance improvements to state recycling facilities and publicly owned port authorities, fund capital repairs to state-owned facilities, acquire land to expand the state's rail services, and construct a water pollution control center.
Also on the ballot is a proposal permitting the state to sell $9.9 million of GOs to raise funds for tuition for unemployed people enrolled in classes offered by state technical colleges.
"There was some concern about us pushing for the issuance of bonds for this project," Willis Lyford, spokesman for Gov. John R. McKernan Jr., said about the tuition referendum. "But the governor considers this plan as part of rebuilding the infrastructure of Maine's employment system."
State Treasurer Sam Shapiro said, "It's really a plan to move more people towards employability. The measure really looks to the future."
The ballot also includes a constitutional amendment that would make permanent a requirement that the state pay for 90% of the programs it mandates.
"The Republicans pushed legislation dealing with this idea," Lyford said. Such a law exists now, he noted, but lawmakers, responding to widespread public support, have moved to include the measure in the state constitution.
Lyford said the governor is strongly behind the amendment.
Last year, 80% of the bond issues on the Maine ballot were rejected by voters. Lyford said the governor expects "about half" of the issues this year to go down.
Maine is rated AA-plus by Standard & Poor's Corp. and Aa1 by Moody's Investors Service.
In Rhode Island, six of the nine ballot questions deal with additional general obligation bonding for 1993.
The largest single issue would authorize the state to sell $15 million to fund the cleanup of the Narragansett Bay.
Other projects on the ballot include a $12 million outlay to improve the state's infrastructure, $10 million to fund the Rhode Island Housing and Conservation Trust Fund, $9.5 million to upgrade state-owned facilities, and two measures dealing with historic preservation and maintenance totaling $7 million.
State officials are uncertain about the chance of passage of these bond issues.
According to several state legislators, the prospect for their approval is dimmed by the recent state banking scandal and budget crisis, which left many Rhode Island residents reeling.
"The governor is supportive of the bonding," said John Kirby, spokesman for Gov. Bruce G. Sundlun. "I don't think I, or anyone else, can safely predict what's going to happen with the voters."
Rhode Island's general obligations bonds are rated AA-minus by Standard & Poor's, A1 by Moody's, and AA-minus by Fitch Investors Service.
In Connecticut, voters will decide on a constitutional amendment that would cap state spending based on the national consumer price index or the five-year rise in state personal income, minus taxes, whichever is higher.
Massachusetts voters have four questions on their ballot.
The question garnering the most interest would require banks, insurance companies, and other publicly traded corporations to disclose earnings, investments, corporate income taxes due, deductions, and credits.
New Hampshire's ballot questions propose three amendments to the constitution dealing with jury selection, checks and balances between the different branches, and holding office while in the military.
Voters also will be asked whether a convention should be organized to rewrite a portion of the state Constitution dealing with selection of state judges.