I understand and appreciate your position on term limits, but would respectfully ask that you and your readers reconsider your position. As you know the Commission was compelled to revisit the charter as a result of a state supreme court case that indicated that our government is "de facto" because we failed to adequately establish the office of Sheriff, Trustee, County Clerk, Register and Assessor. If the ordinance fails, county government would be in jeopardy of losing future legal battles because the government would lack legitimacy.
The ordinance fixes that very serious legal problem. It keeps all of the offices elected as the voters overwhelmingly requested. It also leaves the duties the same for every office as the voters asked.
On the issue of term limits: opponents of the ordinance fail to articulate that the current county wide officers are not bound by any term limits, only the commission and the mayor. The ordinance applies term limits to those elected officials and for continuity's sake applies the same standard to future commissions and mayors. The ordinance is explicit that the three four-year terms DOES NOT APPLY TO ANYONE ELECTED IN 2006. The current commission and mayor can never get three four year terms. We are always bound to two four-year terms.
Finally, I agree that the issue should have been a separate ordinance. I proposed it that way and received 11 votes. A few days later that coalition fell apart and the only point that could be agreed on was three four-year terms. While I am disappointed, I belief the legitimacy of the government trumps the difference between 8 years and 12 years.
I hope a majority of voters will see it that way too. If anyone has questions, you can reach me on my cell at 331-0153 or e-mail me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Commissioner Carpenter responds
Commissioner Mike Carpenter, a reader of this blog, has commented on our concerns about County Charter Amendment 360, and I would like to post that here. While I may not necessarily agree with all of his arguments, I believe they should be heard. Without further ado: