INDIANAPOLIS | Residents of gated communities and neighborhoods with prohibitions on political campaigning may soon be getting a lot of unwanted visitors, with no way to stop them.
The Indiana House voted 84-10 Tuesday for House Bill 1134, barring homeowners associations from adopting or enforcing rules that block an elected official or political candidate from entering association property or visiting homes in the neighborhood.
The measure, sponsored by state Rep. Shelli VanDenburgh, D-Crown Point, was changed Monday by the House at the request of state Rep. Milo Smith, R-Columbus, to also require homeowners associations grant access to the spouse of an elected official or candidate and any volunteers working on behalf of an official or candidate.
VanDenburgh said the legislation ensures elected officials and candidates have equal access to all their constituents or those they want to represent, regardless of where they live.
Two Northwest Indiana lawmakers were among the 10 "no" votes: state Rep. Rick Niemeyer, R-Lowell, and state Rep. Hal Slager, R-Schererville.
The proposal now advances to the Republican-controlled Senate, where it is sponsored by state Sen. Joe Zakas, R-Granger, and state Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes.