ARLINGTON, Texas - There will be a big turnover on the Arlington City Council when term limits take effect.
About 60 percent of voters said they want the mayor and council members limited to three two-year terms.
The issue was put on the ballot by citizens over the objections of the mayor and city council members, who all promised to campaign against it. It means five council members will lose their seats over the next year and a half.
Supporters hope that by adding term limits they will be able to bring city government back to citizens. They collected 11,000 signatures on a petition to put the issue on the ballot.
The mayor and other city council members tried to step in to propose their own plan. They said the petition hardly represented what the city wanted. Voters thought otherwise.
“You have heard our opposition going on and on telling you that these are extreme term limits,” said Zack Maxwell, who supports the new term limits proposal. “We’ve set the bar high. And what we’ve done here in this city is we have set an example. We have said, ‘We don’t need career politicians.”
Arlington will have one of the strictest term limits in the state.
“We are going to find a way to keep our city moving forward,” said Arlington Mayor Jeff Williams. “We didn’t get that can-do name because we weren’t doing anything. We are going to move forward, and I’m so looking forward to the days ahead.”
Opponents said Arlington needs leadership continuity to bring major development to Arlington. They’ve pointed to the new Rangers stadium and the Texas Live entertainment venue.
Supporters of the term limits expect the council will try to turn back the term limits with a proposal of their own in a couple of years.