Many common-interest communities prohibit residents from displaying campaign signs and other messages on their lawns. Residents such as Dianne Black of St. Paul, Minn., say the rules violate the right to free speech, but a spokesman from the Minnesota Secretary of State's Office says that after residents sign papers related to a CIC's regulations, it becomes a private matter. Such restrictions are meant to preserve property values in CICs and to help keep the peace among neighbors, a real estate lawyer says.

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