Utica Common Council talks term limits once again

The Utica Common Council met Wednesday night to once again talk about term limits.

Posted: May 3, 2018 1:15 PM

UTICA – The Utica Common Council met Wednesday night to once again talk about term limits.

Two proposals were brought up for a vote. One would revert the current 12-year consecutive term limit back to eight years, and the other would bring the term limit to a public referendum. The first proposal was rejected in a 6-3 vote, and the second was rejected in a 7-2 vote.

Last fall, the Common Council voted in favor of extending the term limits for the mayor, comptroller, Common Council president and council members from eight years to 12.

The second proposal brought up on Wednesday would have given the public the option to vote for term limits, but Councilman Joe Marino explains why that decision will never be made in a public vote.

“Based on New York State Statute, you cannot adjust term limits for a municipality under any circumstances,” said Utica Councilman Joe Marino. “You can impose or reject the two ends of the spectrum, but the New York State Conference of Mayors and Lawyers said there's never a possibility where you can adjust or amend term limits for a municipality. It's just a New York State law.”

The Common Council can make adjustments to the term limits through the City Charter, but New York State Law prohibits the action through public referendum.

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