Longmont’s Anti-soliciting Law Doesn’t Apply to Political Canvassing
Longmont City Attorney Eugene Mei assured City Councilwoman Polly Christensen Tuesday night that the city’s anti-soliciting law does not forbid political candidates or their supporters from knocking on residents’ doors.
Christensen raised the issue at Tuesday night’s council meeting, questioning whether the council should direct the city staff ” to clarify in our city code the meaning of ‘solicitations.’”
She said that while she didn’t think it should apply to political canvassers or to door-knocking by members of religious organizations, there have been discussions on social media about whether representatives of political or religious groups are disobeying Longmont’s code.
The municipal code prohibits soliciting when there is a conspicuously displayed sign outside the residence that states “No Solicitors” or “No Soliciting.”
Longmont’s code also states “it is unlawful for a solicitor to remain and refuse to leave immediately, or to instruct and cause any agent or employee to remain and refuse to leave immediately, the private residential property or residential unit of another, after being requested by the owner or other person having the right to occupy such residence to leave, whether or not any ‘No Solicitors’ or ‘No Soliciting’ signs have been displayed.”
Any solicitor ticketed for and found guilty of a violation could be fined between $50 and $300, or sentenced to up to 99 days in jail, or both.
However, Mei told Christensen the anti-soliciting section of the code applies only to people who solicit purchases or sales of goods or services — an answer that appeared to satisfy Christensen.
“All right, never mind,” she said.
John Fryar: 303-684-5211, email@example.com or twitter.com/jfryartc