July 31, 2014 – 2:52pm
Petitions seek term limit referendum in Franklin Park
Eugene Piltaver (left) and Lou Georgetta turned in 690 signatures July 25 aimed at putting a referendum on the November ballot to institute term limits for elected officials in Franklin Park. | Provided
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A small group of Franklin Park residents want to put the question of term limits for elected officials in the village on the Nov. 4 ballot.
Lou Georgetta and Eugene Piltaver dropped off a petition and 690 signatures July 25 requesting a binding referendum question be put on ballot. The question is whether the village president, village clerk and village trustees be limited to serving no more than eight years in office.
“There’s a constitutional amendment that limits the presidency to eight years,” said Ken Zurek, one of the organizers of the petition. “We don’t feel anyone in Franklin Park should be better than the president of the United States.”
“If the officials are in office too long, they become arrogant and not interested in the public,” said Piltaver. “It’s for any politician, they should have term limits.”
Trustee John Johnson sees it differently.
“Every two years, people have the opportunity to elect half the board,” Johnson said.
Trustee Randy Peterson suggests term limits are a better idea at higher levels of government.
“At the local level, it’s easier to vote people out when they’re not doing the job,” Peterson said. “At the federal and higher state level, it’s extremely difficult to get them out once they’re in.”
Getting a referendum question on the November ballot requires getting the equivalent of 8 percent or more signatures from registered voters as were votes cast in the last gubernatorial election.
Zurek figures that to be about 320 signatures. The validity of the 690 signatures collected can be challenged during the week of Aug. 4–11.