An end to term limits for Summit County?
BRECKENRIDGE – Four of Summit County’s elected officials want a Nov. 4 ballot question asking voters to abolish their term limits, now set at three.
Sheriff Joe Morales, Assessor Denise Steiskal, County Clerk Cheri Brunvand and Coroner Joanne Richardson brought the issue before the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) Monday. The desire cuts across party lines, with Democrat Steiskal joining the three Republicans.
It will be the BOCC’s decision to place the question. It faces a Sept. 8 deadline.
Morales said term limits rob the elected offices of experience.
“Turnover for the sake of turnover is a disservice when people understand what it takes to build a good office,” said Morales, who served as point person for the discussion.
The request is to list a question for each office instead of applying one question to all the offices, as was done in the past.
In 1998, voters rejected a similar question, but in 2000, they agreed to extend term limits from two to three. Term limits came in vogue in 1994, thanks to a state ballot issue limiting state and county political offices to two terms.
Opposition is already brewing. Democratic activist Sandy Greenhut said she’s circulating a petition “opposing abolishing term limits by office.”
She said when term limits were raised to three in 2000, everybody said that three was all they wanted, and she is standing by that pledge.
Neither the Democratic nor Republican central committees took a stand on the issue this summer when it came before them. Officials from each party said the matter was postponed because the ballot was already crowded with questions, not because the committees wanted to keep term limits.
Marty Ferris, chair of the GOP Central Committee, said her personal opinion is that three is enough.
“It needs to be left as it is. It is time for those people to take a hike. Elected office is not supposed to be a person’s job for a whole career,” said Ferris, who lost the 2002 GOP nomination for county treasurer to incumbent Larry Gilliland.
Ferris said it’s difficult to find
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having on our residents and businesses. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.
Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.
Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User