The RPOS Asks The Sarasota County Commission to Follow The Will Of The People
Nov. 11, 2011 – The Executive Committee of the Republican Party of Sarasota (RPOS) passed a near unanimous resolution (97 Yeas vs. 2 Nays) on November 10th urging the Sarasota County commissioners to respect and abide by the “two consecutive term limit” which was previously approved by 68% of the voters in a countrywide ballot in 1998. The resolution further urged the Commissioners to abandon any consideration of extending the limit to three terms, and not restart the clock on current commissioners’ terms by changing the effective date of enforcement. Under the Charter mandate, Commissioners would only be able to serve again after a two-year lapse of service.
The original Sarasota County charter amendment limiting service to two terms was approved in 1998, but never enforced due to local litigation in 2005. Recently, however, the Florida Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal ruled that term limits may be imposed. This was challenged and the Florida State Supreme Court is expected to rule on the constitutionality of term limits prior to the 2012 elections.
In addition, the Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections has stated that the cost of adding the County Commission’s proposed language to the ballot would be $120,000. Rather than spending $120,000 on efforts to ignore the will of the people and extend their time in office, The Republican Party of Sarasota County recommends that the Commissioners return these funds to the taxpayers by way of lowering taxes.
The Sarasota County Commission has scheduled a public meeting next Tuesday, November 15th, to discuss amending the County Charter to permit a “three term limit” which would grant the County Commissioners three additional terms, in additional to the two-year term limit previously enacted by the voters of Sarasota County. Supervisor of Elections, Kathy Dent, has advised that her office would need the proposed language of the amendment by November 22nd in order to have sufficient time to print ballots for the January 31 special election. This is an important meeting that all concerned Sarasota County citizens should attend.
County Commission Meeting Information:
Date/Time: Tuesday, November 15th at 9am
Location: The Sarasota County Commission Chambers
Address: 1660 Ringling Blvd, Sarasota, Florida
More info: 941-861-5344
Text Of The Republican Party of Sarasota County Resolution
As Passed By A Vote Of 97 Yeas Vs. 2 Nays
WHEREAS, through the county charter review process, an amendment imposing two consecutive term limits on county commissioners was created and vetted and placed on the countywide ballot in 1998;
WHEREAS, the voters of Sarasota approved this Charter amendment by 68% of the vote;
WHEREAS, the voter-imposed, two consecutive term limits Charter amendment was blocked by local litigation in 2005;
WHEREAS, the two-consecutive county commission term limits remains in the county charter but is currently unenforced;
WHEREAS, a Florida Appellate Court has ruled, “that the voters may amend a county’s charter, if they choose, to impose term limits on county commissioners.”
WHEREAS, the Florida State Supreme Court of the is expected to uphold on the constitutionality of county commission term limits before the 2012 elections;
WHEREAS, the current Board of County Commissioners is considering placing a new initiative, extending the voter imposed two term limits, to three term limits, not including current or any previous consecutive terms, on County Commissioners, on the Jan., 2012 ballot.
THE REPUBLICAN PARTY OF SARASOTA COUNTY HEREBY RESOLVES that the Sarasota County commissioners shall respect the clearly expressed will of the people, retaining, defending and abiding by the voter-initiated and imposed, two-consecutive term limits;
AND that the Sarasota County commissioners shall abandon any attempt to extend the two consecutive term limits to three term limits;
AND that the current Board of Sarasota County commissioners shall not seek to change the effective date, which is the date the original two consecutive term limits charter amendment was passed;
AND that, pursuant to implementing the original effective date, any commissioner, currently serving his or her second or more consecutive elected term should refrain from seeking another term, until they have completed the Charter-mandated two-year lapse of service.
11/12/2011 “RPOS oppose term limit change”
The people voted 13 years ago to have 8 year term limits and the county commissioners – all five of whom are Republicans – need to abide by that, Sarasota Republican Party chairman Joe Gruters said.