Dundalk Patch received the following letter from Adam Skolnik, executive director of the Maryland Multi-Housing Association, in response to a blog about Dundalk's high concentration of subsidized renters:
Dear Mr. Beeler,
I represent owners and managers of 161,000 apartments in the State of Maryland. We are opposed the source of income laws (mandatory section 8) for a number of reasons.
First and foremost do you honestly believe that the “source of income” that a person makes is the same as the Fair Housing protected classes that Maryland currently recognizes? Following are the national and state protected classes. Is how you earn your money comparable to skin color, national origin, race or religion?
We are against this law because the regulatory burden imposed if massive. Should a landlord have a choice if it does not want to deal with Federal, State and Local jurisdictional bureaucracy that directly impacts his or her business?
Did you notice at this meeting that the opposing view was not given the opportunity to refute the claims that this type of law de-concentrates poverty, as a matter of fact we have as much data or more that these laws have little to no effect on the de-concentration of poverty. Is stifling decent really what the United States, Maryland and Baltimore County are really about. We welcome the opportunity to explain this to you and your readers. Writing an informed blog only adds value to the Patch and its readers.
Color: Pertaining to a person’s skin color Familial Status: Families in which one or more children under 18 live with: a parent; a person who has legal custody of the child or children; or the designee of the parent or legal custodian, with the parent or custodian's written permission.
Familial status protection also applies to pregnant women and anyone securing legal custody of a child under 18.
National Origin: Refers to country of birth.
Physical or Mental Disability: In reference to you or someone close to you who: has a physical or mental disability (including hearing, mobility and visual impairments, chronic alcoholism, chronic mental illness, AIDS, AIDS-related Complex and mental retardation) that substantially limits one or more major life activities ; has a record of such a disability; or is regarded as having such a disability.
Race: Categories of physical characteristics and/or genetic groupings of human populations.
Religion: Participation with one of the world’s structured religions; one’s spiritual beliefs; inference of religion by place of worship.
Sex: Male or female.
MARYLAND: Includes all federal protections listed above PLUS:
Marital Status: The state of being single, married, separated, divorced, or widowed.
Sexual Orientation: The identification of an individual as to male or female homosexuality, heterosexuality, or bisexuality.
Editor's Note: This letter was published in its entirety, as it was received.