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College Park approves voting rights for non-citizens

College Park, MD- A Prince George’s County city has voted in favor of allowing non-citizens to vote in local elections.

The city council of College Park voted late Tuesday, Sept. 12 to approve a bill that permits non-citizens to vote in municipal elections. The 4-3 vote came hours after a heated discussion over the proposed bill. The bill will allow green-card holders, undocumented immigrants and student-visa holders who are residents of College Park to cast ballots in local elections.

College Park Mayor, Patrick Wojahn stated many residents supported the controversial decision. During the public meeting about the bill, residents both for and against it spoke before the city council. The final vote came down just before midnight.

The bill does exclude non-citizens who have been convicted of a felony and are serving time in prison or those who have been convicted of buying or selling votes.

The vote was originally scheduled to take place in August but it was postponed after threats were made against council members over the proposed bill.

Currently, there are six other towns in Maryland who allow legal residents and undocumented immigrants to vote in municipal elections. Those towns are Takoma Park, Hyattsville, Somerset, Glen Echo, Martin’s Additions and Mt. Rainier.

Contact Joy Shrum at j.shrum@thebaynet.com

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