Bill Introduced to Protect Renters From Having to Disclose Criminal History

Councilmember Laurie-Anne Sayles introduced Bill 8-24 on Tuesday, March 5, which would amend Montgomery County’s “ban-the-box” legislation to protect renters from having to disclose their criminal history to a prospective landlord. The bill is co-sponsored by Councilmembers Evan Glass and Sidney Katz.

Per the news release: “As we remain responsive to constituents navigating the challenges with finding rental housing that is in limited supply, I appreciate when residents bring their concerns to our office so we can improve their rental experience without placing undue burdens on landlords,” Councilmember Sayles said. “Similar to the ‘ban the box’ legislation for job applications, landlords cannot conduct criminal and credit background checks during the rental application process. By displaying the law regarding background checks for housing applications in an easily noticeable place, renters will become more aware of their rights.”

The bill would require posting a notice regarding the use of criminal arrest and conviction in rental housing decisions; clarify a certain addendum or statement requirement for rental applications; require a landlord to retain a rental application addendum for a certain period; require a landlord provide to the County as part of the annual rental housing survey a completed criminal and credit screening addendum; require annual reporting of certain disaggregated data related to rental applications; and generally amend the law regarding discrimination in housing and landlord-tenant affairs.

“This bill requires the Office of Human Rights to submit an annual report to the Council by October 1 detailing the number of complaints received and reasons for denying a rental application,” Councilmember Sayles said. “This information will be critical for monitoring and tracking progress on how we are removing barriers for those seeking to rent in our community.”

Read the staff report here for more details on Bill 8-24.

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17th Annual Kensington Day of the Book Festival

Now in its 17th year, the Kensington Day of the Book Festival is a family-friendly street festival featuring 150+ renowned authors, poets, and literary organizations. Enjoy live music on five stages, special guest speakers, military veteran writers and comedians, poetry readings, cookbook demos, children's program, and much more.

Admission is free, and attendees will also be able to explore a marketplace of books and food offerings from local vendors.

Not your average book festival! This festival offers something for everyone!

17th Annual Kensington Day of the Book Festival

Sunday, April 21, 2024, 11am-4pm (held rain or shine!)

Howard Avenue, Kensington, MD 20895

Instagram: @kensingtonbookfestival

Contact: Elisenda Sola-Sole, Festival Director

[email protected]

301-949-9416 (text preferred)

FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival

Get ready to experience the vibrant colors, tantalizing flavors, and infectious rhythms of the Caribbean at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival! Hosted by RHU LLC, this exciting festival is set to take place on May 18, 2024, at the picturesque 16700 Barnesville Rd in Boyds, MD.

Step into a world where the Caribbean spirit comes alive! From 12:00 PM onwards, immerse yourself in a sensory journey that celebrates the unique culture, cuisine, and music of the Caribbean. Whether you're an African American, a Reggae or Soca music enthusiast, a wine lover, or part of the vibrant Caribbean diaspora, this festival promises to delight and captivate you in every way.

Let the enticing aromas of mouthwatering Caribbean dishes tantalize your taste buds. Feast on traditional delicacies prepared by expert chefs, showcasing the rich and diverse culinary heritage of the Caribbean. Indulge in flavorful jerk chicken, succulent seafood, and delectable plantain dishes that will transport you straight to the islands.

Accompanying the culinary extravaganza is a carefully curated selection of premium wines, ensuring the perfect pairing for your palate. Sip on fine wines from renowned vineyards, each sip a reflection of the Caribbean's vibrant spirit. Discover new flavors, expand your wine knowledge, and savor unforgettable moments with every glass.

As the sun sets, get ready to groove to the infectious rhythms of Caribbean music. Feel the pulsating beats of reggae, soca, dancehall, and calypso, moving your body to the lively melodies. Live performances by talented musicians and performers will keep the energy high, ensuring a night of unforgettable entertainment.

Don't miss this opportunity to embrace the Caribbean spirit and celebrate the arrival of spring in style! Tickets are available on AllEvents, so secure your spot today. Join us at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival, where cultures collide and unforgettable memories are made.



2 NIGHT Camping packages available: RV/CAMPER $200 | TENTS $150 Starting on Friday May 17 @ 5pm | 30 RV SPACES | 30+ TENT SPACES



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