County Registrar Affirms Term Limit Signatures

West Hollywood Term Limits announced Tuesday that the L.A. County Registrar-Recorder has verified that the group secured more than the 2,344 signatures needed to put on the March 2013 ballot a proposal to limit city council terms. The group mounted an intensive campaign this fall to collect signatures in support of the measure, which would limit council members to twelve years of service. It is not retroactive. Supporters attribute what they see as unresponsiveness to neighborhood issues to a lack of turnover on the council.

The council, at its Nov. 19 meeting, has the option of enacting the term limit measure into law or putting it on the March 2013 ballot for a vote by local residents.

“West Hollywood voters understand that those seats on the city council dais belong to the people, not to any one individual,” said initiative proponent Sheila Lightfoot. “Together, our friends and neighbors stood up for themselves and the opportunity for our City government to be a place where new ideas and new faces will be welcome.”

Scott Schmidt, manager of the term limits campaign, said: “From day one, this initiative has been a David-versus-Goliath effort. While we celebrate our volunteers’ success in gathering enough signatures to place term limits on the ballot, there is plenty of hard work ahead to continue this conversation with the voters of West Hollywood and counter the attacks we know will be coming our way.”

Councilmember John Heilman has served since the city’s incorporation in 1984, for a total of 27 years. Councilmember Abbe Land has served 20 years. Councilmembers John Duran and Prang, both up for re-election next March, have served for 11 and 15 years, respectively. Councilmember John D’Amico was elected last year.