Downey : Council Term-Limit Measure Could Be Placed on Ballot

A proposal to limit Downey council members to two four-year terms has qualified for the Nov. 2 ballot, officials said Wednesday.

City Clerk Judith E. McDonnell said the Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters counted 6,094 valid signatures on a petition calling for term limits to be written into the city charter. The measure needed 6,026 signatures, and 8,756 were submitted.

Council members will be asked to place the measure on the ballot at their meeting Tuesday, McDonnell said.

The petition circulated by lawyer and former Councilman Joseph E. Di Loreto advocates term limits as a way of preventing council members from becoming career politicians.

The election will cost the city about $50,000.

City officials contend the measure is unnecessary. Only four people, including incumbent Councilwoman Diane P. Boggs, have served more than two terms in the city's 37-year history. Boggs was elected to her third term last year.

Boggs said the council is considering alternative measures to place on the Nov. 2 ballot, including one that would allow a council member who has served eight years to serve again after skipping a term.

Di Loreto said there is considerable support for his initiative.

"All (a competing measure) is going to do is confuse the voters," he said.

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