Term limits. For years we opposed them, reasoning, as some members of the county Charter Commission also have, that the electorate should decide when someone has outstayed his or her welcome in office.
The only problem with that reasoning is experience shows incumbents are re-elected time after time regardless of their job performance. We've concluded it is simply name recognition - a good many voters mark their ballots for names they recognize. Period.
So, it is somewhat disappointing the Charter Commission rejected a proposal to give County Council members a "maximum term, never to return." While suggesting council terms be increased from two to four years, the commission narrowly defeated including this ultimate term limit proposal.
We fear this decision will result in fewer fresh faces, fewer fresh ideas on the council - and the building of power bases. Commission member Dave DeLeon was correct when he noted the maximum term proposal would have stopped incumbents from being "locked in and becoming entrenched and untouchable in their office."
While we do not agree with everything the commission is doing (in addition to the above, we also would have liked to see district, instead of "at large," voting on the ballot), the panel is correct to sharply limit the number of proposals on the ballot. A few, well-defined, important issues will allow the electorate to make informed choices.
The Charter Commission members should be commended for the job they are doing.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.