A New Term Limits Bill
October 6th, 2008
Council members Bill de Blasio and Letitia James blasted the administration on the steps of City Hall this afternoon, calling the move to extend term limits worse than the days of Tammany Hall.
“Whatever happened in the days of Tammany Hall, it pales in comparison to the notion of literally a small group of millionaires deciding when the rules can be changed and who gets to lead,” said Councilmember Bill de Blasio.
James added: “My ancestors died for the right to vote. There is blood on the streets of people who died for the right to vote. And the mayor of the city of New York is ignoring all of that and basically said its problematic to bring it to the voters.”
The scene at City Hall today before the City Council went into a closed-door Democratic caucus meeting was abuzz about term limits.
One Windsor Terrace resident, pictured here, made his opposition quite clear. Other reports show, however, that other members are still torn on the term limit question.
Members of the clergy who turned out with James and de Blasio this afternoon were equally defiant over the mayor’s plan to extend term limits and give himself — 35 council members, four borough presidents, the comptroller and public advocate — another four years.
De Blasio and James said a bill they have proposed, which would set up a charter revision commission to look into term limits and subsequently send the issue to the voters, would be introduced tomorrow. A similar bill proposed by Councilmember David Weprin, which would ban the City Council from changing term limits legislatively, is also scheduled for introduction tomorrow, according to Weprin’s spokesperson.
Weprin’s bill, de Blasio said, is more forward-looking than the de Blasio/James bill, which applies to this particular situation.
In addition to the Weprin and James/de Blasio bills, there is also Oliver Koppell’s legislation (which just extends term limits from two to three) and the mayor’s proposal. So far, it is unclear whether there is a distinction between what the mayor wants and Koppell’s bill.By Courtney Gross on October 6, 2008, 5:38 pm
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