Solicitation of Initiative Petitions and Nomination Papers in Municipal Buildings

Public Posting

Regarding the Solicitation of Signatures for Initiative Petitions and/or Nomination Papers

Both the United States and Massachusetts Constitutions protect the right to solicit signatures on ballot question petitions/nomination papers in a reasonable and unobtrusive manner in open public areas. This includes the public areas of municipal property.

For municipal buildings, people soliciting signatures cannot go into individual offices but can be in areas that are considered "public forums". This standard is basically an area that is open for anyone to go. Offices themselves are not open to anyone but hallways generally are. Additionally, these provisions apply to a person physically collecting signatures. Any such activities should be carried on in a manner not to interfere with other public business.

Nomination papers and other ballot question petitions should not be left unattended in any public building as it could be construed as using public funds to support a candidate or question.