NY Capitol News

Legislators push for term limits

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) - Term limits has become a big talking point as election season is almost upon us.

"Holding office is a civic duty, not a life-long career," Senator George Amedore (R-Mohawk Valley) said.

Legislators on both sides of the aisle came together today to say that the time for career politicians should come to an end and a new generation of younger men and women should take their place.

"Our Founding Fathers, never had the notion that somebody would make a career out of politics, they were farmers and businessmen who cared about their community and cared about their country and they offered their service and went back to their jobs," Senator Rich Funke (R-Rochester) said.

They say this will not only open the doors to new ideas but also help lower corruption.

"Over 20 individuals have been indicted or convicted over the last number of years here, but one of the commonalities is that they were in office for a very very long time," Senator Chris Jacobs (R-Buffalo) said.

A Siena Poll taken in January showed that around 59 percent of New Yorkers are in favor of term limits for both the governor and legislators. However, some argue that term limits already exist since people vote for who they want.

"That's true, but in this particular instance, they'll have a chance examining this concept to have that vote as to whether or not they want to make this a law in the state of New York," Senator Joseph Griffo (R-Utica) said.

There are multiple bills in both houses right now that would limit the term for Governor to 8 years and for legislators to 12 years. These bills have never gotten very far in either house in the past but is supported by Governor Andrew Cuomo, despite him running for a third term, and Republican gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro.

"Should I be elected I pledge to only serve two terms as Governor of New York and beyond that, I will ask the state legislature to adopt their accountable government act," Molinaro said.

The issue to amend the New York Constitution with term limits would have to be put before voters in a general election.


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