July 14, 2017
CONTACT: Lindsey Wiles
MARIETTA – On Wednesday, July 12, 2017, Marietta City Council held its final discussion and vote on the passage of instituting term limits on both Council members and the Office of the Mayor. Beginning, January 1, 2018, all elected members of the Marietta City Council will be eligible to serve a maximum of three (4) four terms in office.
Statement from Mayor Steve Tumlin:
“On Wednesday, July 12, the Marietta City Council did what was right. We listened to the people of Marietta who elected us to serve this great City. We sought their input in November 2016 when we asked them to go to the polls and speak their minds regarding instituting term limits for the Marietta City Council and the Office of the Mayor. This was not a normal election, this was a Presidential Election and therefore we expected to receive a greater percentage of voters for Marietta. More than 20,000 voted and it was a landslide. Eighty percent of the voters voted in favor of instituting three (4) four-year terms on both City Council and the Mayor.
Many media outlets and citizens have asked me, why do this now? Well, when many of us ran for election or re-election in November 2013, this was an item we promised to pursue and get the input of the voters and when that input stated eighty percent of you wished for term limits we sought out to make that happen. We tried the traditional way of asking the Georgia House and Senate members to pass local legislation during the 2017 Session, but when they were unable to follow through we changed the City’s charter through the policy of Home Rule whereby cities have the ability to lawfully determine their own future.
Term limits within Georgia cities are not the norm. According to the Georgia Municipal Association, out of the over 500 cities in Georgia only six have term limits for both Mayor and Council, while another 17 have term limits solely for Council members. Given this information, many people have asked me why should we do this? I believe that by instituting terms limits, the City of Marietta will see a broader representation of the citizens who make up our great city serving on the City Council. Term limits will better allow for a “changing of the guard” and bring in new innovative ideas and perspectives. Many of you have asked about the loss of experience, but I do not think that is an issue. Many elected officials have already served on boards and committees throughout the city and know the amount of time and level of commitment involved in serving on City Council.
I am honored to say that we listened to the voters and did what was right by instituting term limits for Marietta’s elected officials.”