Montgomery Voters Approve Term Limits Referendum

Voters in Montgomery County Tuesday decided on three ballot questions, including a term limits referendum, which was approved 262,512 or 68.9 percent to 118,532 votes or 31.1 percent. The vote means that the county executive and County Council members will be limited to serving three consecutive terms. In Montgomery County, the terms last for four years; the current term ends in 2018.

The result was a significant reversal from the last time the issue was put to voters: In 2004 it lost by 4 percentage points, while in 2000 it was defeated by 8 percentage points.

The result will likely have significant effects on the 2018 election in Montgomery County, keeping four current members of the Council — Marc Elrich (At Large), Nancy Floreen (At Large), George Leventhal (At Large), and Roger Berliner (District 1) — from running for re-election, should they have chosen to do so. (Leventhal had said he would not run again.) There are nine members on the County Council. County Executive Ike Leggett has said he does not plan to run for a fourth term.

In response to the petition, the County Council placed a charter amendment on the ballot, Question C, that clarifies what constitutes a full term for County Council and county executive. As written, Question B treats a partial term like a full term. Question C was approved by 79 percent, meaning a partial term could only count as a full term if a person served for at least half the time.

Question A also won with 335,655 votes in favor, or 89.9 percent compared with 37,616 votes against, or 10.1 percent . The measure would allow the County Council to fill a vacancy in the office of the county executive by special election.

An election isn’t required, but the change to the charter would allow an election. Currently, a vacancy would be filled by a majority vote of the council. If members can’t reach a majority, the central committee of the majority party on the council would vote to fill the vacancy.

All results are current as of 7:00 am on Thursday, November 10, 2016. For updated information, visit the State Board of Elections.

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