The Oxford City Council unanimously approved the second reading of an ordinance that sets term limits for members serving on the city’s numerous boards and commissions during Tuesday night’s meeting. From here on out, one member can serve on a board or commission for two consecutive terms before having to sit out at least one, according to Economic Development Director Alan Kyger.
“After two terms you have to step down but can apply after the end of one term,” Kyger said.
The difference between a city resolution and ordinance is the time it takes to implement each. A resolution typically takes immediate effect. If the city wants to buy a new police car, then it would be passed as a resolution.
An ordinance is for long-term issues, such as setting a rule for the council. It goes into the city codebook and takes affect 30 days after its passage.
As standard with the second reading of any ordinance, the council allows public reaction. Usually, no one from the public speaks on an ordinance, but this time, self-proclaimed citizen watchdog Kathleen Zien stood at the podium and agreed with the ordinance.
“At the last meeting, Mr. Keebler noted that when citizens had served the city well on the board and wished to be difficult to tell them they couldn’t serve anymore and Kate [Rousmaniere] thought Mr. Snyder’s question sent a message that we were looking for more qualified people,” Zien said. “Why is that bad? We should always be looking for more qualified people. The same people are appointed who routinely disobey regulations, and should be removed.”
Zien concluded by recommending to council that no current member on the Board of Zoning Appeals should be reinstated after their term is up on June 30.
City Council meetings occur at 7:30 p.m. every other Tuesday in the city courthouse uptown.