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Vote Yes! GR City Term Limits

Term Limit Facts

9 out of the 10 largest US cities, except Chicago, have municipal term limits, including New York City, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, Knoxville, Nashville, Jacksonville, etc.

Over half of the cities with population greater than 200,000 have term limits.  More are considering them, too. Grand Rapids is the second largest city in Michigan. It has a diverse population with plenty of talented people fit to run for public office.

In 2012, term limit questions were put to a vote in almost 100 separate elections across the country. The pro term limit side won over 96% of the time with an average result of 70% win in favor of term limits.

Some of the benefits of term limits

  1. Encourage a larger more diverse pool of candidates (many won’t run against an entrenched incumbent)
  2. Greater citizens participation
  3. Forces voters to look past sentimental relationships and look at merits 
  4. Ensure input of fresh ideas, new perspectives and new solutions to old problems
  5. Bring officials closer to people
  6. Discourages cronyism
  7. Encourage government for the people, by the people

In general, opposition to term limits comes from politicians, special interest groups, lobbyists.

QUOTES FROM OUR FOUNDING FATHERS

"Elections, especially of representatives and counselors, should be annual … These great men … should be [chosen] once a year – Like bubbles on the sea of matter borne, they rise, they break, and to the sea return. This will teach them the great political virtues of humility, patience, and moderation, without which every man in power becomes a ravenous beast of prey." - John Adams, 2nd President of the U.S 

"To prevent every danger which might arise to American freedom from continuing too long in office, it is earnestly recommended that we set an obligation on the holder of that office to go out after a certain period." - Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of the U.S

“In free governments, the rulers are the servants, and the people their superiors . . . For the former to return among the latter does not degrade, but promote them.” Benjamin Franklin

If term limits are approved in November, 2014, how would it impact the current City Commissioners and Mayor?

Walt Gutowski, 1st Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2015)    
not eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run for Mayor

Dave Shaffer, 1st Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2017)
not eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run for Mayor 

Rosalyn Bliss, 2nd Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2017)
not eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run for Mayor

Ruth Kelly, 2nd Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2015)
eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run Mayor

Elias Lumpkins, Jr, 3rd Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2015)
not eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run for Mayor

Senita Lenear, 3rd Ward (current term expires Dec 31, 2017)      
eligible to run for commissioner / eligible to run for Mayor

George Heartwell, Mayor (current term expires Dec 31, 2015)   
not eligible to run for commissioner / not eligible to run for Mayor