[Michlib-l] building access in the election law
gladldirector at gmail.com
Thu Jun 15 14:46:34 EDT 2017
Thanks to everybody who responded to my inquiry. The resources were great,
as well as Michigan Bureau of Elections, 800-292-5973. Also appreciated
all the info about library policies. Happily our library policy seems to
be sufficient and the patron wasn't looking to cause a problem at the
library but wanted to understand his rights better in Michigan. I guess
election law in California is different, but he was sure there must be
something similar in Michigan law about public building access.
On Thu, Jun 15, 2017 at 2:28 PM, Membiela, Clare (MDE) <
MembielaC at michigan.gov> wrote:
> Hello Lise:
> In addition to the ACLU document, the links below may provide some helpful
> Because a public library is often determined a "limited public forum" (as
> seen on the ACLU document, and per the definition in the Perry case
> (below)), It is probably not advisable to ban all solicitation for
> signatures. However, it seems that it is permissible for public libraries
> to establish certain policies regarding public use of the building and
> grounds by people - including petition volunteers.
> As always, PLEASE consult your attorney before finalizing a procedure or
> For example, many libraries have policies regarding the solicitation of
> signatures. You may want to review some of these policies from other
> Michigan Libraries and then consult your attorney on which policies would
> be best for your community and library. A key aspect of such policies is
> that the library should not appear to favor one topic or point of view over
> another, and the impetus of creating policies should be to ensure the use
> of the building for its intended purpose (ie minimization of disruption to
> the library).
> Information on Petitioning in Limited Public Forums
> Perry Educ. Ass'n v. Perry Local Educators' Ass'n, 460 U.S. 37, 49, 103 S.
> Ct. 948, 957, 74 L. Ed. 2d 794 (1983) (Supreme Court Opinion that defines
> "Limited Public Forum) http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-
> http://www.olc.org/pdf/Petitioning-bans08-08.pdf Good general
> explanation of this issue directed towards libraries by an Ohio attorney.
> http://constitution.findlaw.com/amendment1/annotation20.html Another
> good, but more general, explanation, via FindLaw
> (Older , but still a good explanation) specifically addressing libraries,
> via Librarylaw blog.
> Sample Policies (Found via Google - "library policies petition michigan"
> I hope this is helpful!
> Clare D. Membiela, MLS, J.D.
> Library of Michigan
> MembielaC at michigan.gov
> The research and resources above are for informational purposes only and
> not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your
> attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem.
> Did you know most Michigan educator certificates expire June 30th of any
> given year? Educators can check expiration dates and renew or progress
> certificates using the Michigan Online Educator Certification System at
> www.michigan.gov/moecs. Not your year for renewal? Use MOECS to manage
> professional learning for future renewals, view effectiveness ratings and
> update personal information!
> -----Original Message-----
> From: michlib-l-bounces at mcls.org [mailto:michlib-l-bounces at mcls.org] On
> Behalf Of James Lenze via Michlib-l
> Sent: Wednesday, June 14, 2017 3:09 PM
> To: Lise Mitchell via Michlib-l <michlib-l at mcls.org>
> Subject: Re: [Michlib-l] building access in the election law
> I am not a lawyer, but as I understand it, the question comes down to
> whether the area in question is a public forum, and whether or not the
> government has allowed other types of free speech in the area in the past.
> Here is a link to document from the ACLU about petitioning. The 2nd
> question on page 2 addresses petitioning in public buildings.
> James B Lenze, Director
> Garden City Public Library
> jamesl at gardencitymi.org
> From: Lise Mitchell via Michlib-l<mailto:michlib-l at mcls.org>
> Sent: Wednesday, June 14, 2017 2:36 PM
> To: michlib-l<mailto:michlib-l at mcls.org>
> Subject: [Michlib-l] building access in the election law
> Does anybody know of in the Michigan election law or any state law that
> gives people collecting signatures for petitions special rights to collect
> signatures in public buildings?
> Or the section of law about guaranteeing access to public buildings to
> collect signatures for petitions.
> I've only read about no collecting signatures near polling places.
> thanks, lise
> Lise Mitchell, Director
> Grand Ledge Area District Library
> 131 E. Jefferson Street
> Grand Ledge, MI 48837
> gladldirector at gmail.com<mailto:gladldirector at gmail.com>
> 517-622-3550 direct
> 517-627-7014 Library
> 517-627-6276 fax
> Michlib-l mailing list
> Michlib-l at mcls.org
Lise Mitchell, Director
Grand Ledge Area District Library
131 E. Jefferson Street
Grand Ledge, MI 48837
gladldirector at gmail.com
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