DIAMONDHEAD, MS (WLOX) - The Diamondhead Property Owners Association says it has no plan to respond to the ACLU's allegation that the POA is stepping on First Amendment Rights in the city's first municipal election.
Signs are banned from residential yards, as is door to door campaigning. The American Civil Liberties Union sent a letter to the POA saying those rules violate residents' rights to free speech.
The ACLU wants the rules suspended through the June 4th General election. But the POA leader told WLOX News residents know the rules when they buy a home in Diamondhead.
"We basically completely disagree with the ACLU and we don't intend to respond to their letter," said Diamondhead POA President Marshall Kyger. "It seems to me their whole case hinges on their claim that the POA and the city of Diamondhead are so intertwined as to be inseparable. Therefore the POA should be subject to the same first and 14th amendment rules as the city. I don't think anything could be further from the truth."
Kyger said the POA has been in existence for 40 years before the city of Diamondhead ever came into being.
"We're a non-profit Mississippi Corporation. We're still a non-profit Mississippi corporation completely separate and distinct from the city of Diamondhead. Every property owner in Diamondhead, when they bought their property, signed an agreement to abide by the covenant."
Kyger said if it comes down to it, the POA is prepared to defend its position in court.
With the "no yard signs allowed" policy, many residents have resorted to using magnetic car signs to campaign for the candidate they support.