Thursday, October 16, 2008

Term Limit Clarification on Next Month's Ballot

Posted By on Thu, Oct 16, 2008 at 2:19 PM

A little-discussed Metro charter amendment will be on Davidson County ballots this Nov. 4. If passed, the amendment will make more than half of a term served in Metro elected office count as a full term for term limit purposes. In other words, if a Metro council member croaked 23 months into her four-year term, and you filled in for her, your service would count as a full term in office—meaning that you would then get only another full term in office before being term-limited out. The change would affect five sitting council members. I like this idea for the office of mayor and vice-mayor, but not for the district or at-large council seats. The reason: It may deter the best potential council members from stepping into the breach when a seat becomes open mid-term. Think about it: You really want to serve on the council. You know it’s going to take a lot of time and money no matter what. So—are you going to cheat yourself out of a full term by filling in a prematurely vacant seat? I think not. Full text of the amendment after the jump.
This amendment would provide that no person elected and qualified to the office of mayor, vice-mayor, district councilman, or councilman-at-large would be eligible for the succeeding term if such person has served more than one-half of a four (4) year term and a consecutive complete four (4) year term, and would clarify that the of¬fices of district councilman and councilman-at-large are two separate offices for purposes of the term limitations.

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