Term-limit bill passes state Senate; could go on November ballot

TYLER (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - A bill designed to limit the tenure of statewide elected officials passed out of the state Senate today.

Senate Joint Resolution 13, authored by Sen. Kevin Eltife, R-Tyler, would place a constitutional amendment regarding term limits for all statewide elected officials before voters in November. It would limit officials to two, consecutive four-year terms.

The bill received more than two-thirds approval by Senate members, 27-4.

The term limits resolution applies to the governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, comptroller, land commissioner, agriculture commissioner, railroad commissioners and attorney general. It would not apply to state representatives and senators.

Eltife said it will face a "high hurdle" in the House where it also needs two-thirds of the 150 member chamber for approval. The overwhelming bi-partisan support in the Senate has Eltife confident there is opportunity for passage in the House.

"If (legislators) get it to the voters (in November) we'll find out what they think," he said.

Eltife believes Texas voters would overwhelmingly support limits but that either way the discussion regarding limiting statewide officials would be settled.

Legislation to limit elected officials' terms has been introduced in past sessions but gained little ground. In a past interview Eltife said he would prefer all elected officials, including state senators and representatives, be limited as well, but he wanted to introduce a resolution that "might have a chance."


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