Tenant Rights to Civic Inclusion
In 2013, the City Council enacted two important amendments to the Housing Code to ensure that tenants who live in multi-unit housing have the opportunity to fully participate in the electoral process.
1) Candidates’ access to multi-unit buildings:
After providing notice to landlords and tenants, qualified candidates and their volunteers are permitted to enter apartment buildings for the purpose of campaigning for office or to register voters. This may occur during the 90-day period before an election and only for candidates who are running to represent an area that includes the multi-unit building. Of course, tenants are not required to open their doors to candidates. The City provides, free of charge, a sign that a tenant may place on the apartment unit door to indicate that canvassing is not welcome.
2) Information packets for new tenants:
Within seven days of a new tenancy, landlords are required to distribute to new tenants a City-supplied packet of information to include: a) State of Maryland voter registration forms; b) City of Takoma Park voter registration forms for residents not eligible to register and vote in county, state, and national elections; and c) other material designated by the City regarding services, laws, and the electoral process.
The complete packet is available in English and Spanish.