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Houston City Council To Consider Asking Voters To Change Term Limits

Most council members agree that terms should be longer. The question is when the change should happen


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Currently, Houston’s elected officials serve a maximum of three two-year terms. That includes the mayor, council members and the city controller.

Voters approved term limits in 1991, and every few years there is a push to change them.

At this week’s meeting, the City Council discussed a proposal by Mayor Annise Parker to introduce two four-year terms.

“It allows for stability, it allows for little bit longer term thinking, better follow-through on capital projects and so forth,” Parker said.

Most council members say they would vote for longer term limits.

The question is when the change should be implemented. Parker’s proposal asks for a start in 2020 to avoid the perception that current officials could benefit.

Council member Jerry Davis is proposing the change to go into effect in 2016, with the reservation that those who have served two terms at the time of this November’s election are not eligible for another term.

Council member Dwight Boykins supports the proposal. He said Davis and fellow council member Dave Martin “really worked hard to put together a great amendment that benefits nobody. It’s a fair amendment.”  

The item was tagged in this week’s meeting, meaning council members will vote on it next week.

If they approve, the issue will go before voters in November.


Davis’ amendment 


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