Term extension up for debate in New Mexico

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August 12, 2010

SANTA FE, New Mexico: A ballot measure in New Mexico will ask voters whether or not to extend term limits for county officials. With less than three months away from the November 2, 2010 general election, arguments are already being offered for and against the proposal, which is also known as Amendment 2:

Do-A Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins is in favor of the measure, stating that the extensions of term limits helps officials gain experience in their jobs. Some positions, according to Ellins, require specialized training, thus the longer terms would help those positions and their quality. Ellins stated that position such as sheriff fit this description of someone who needs specialized training, "You probably need to keep good county commissioners in there, too, but I think there are more people you can find to run for county commission. Those are easier offices to find candidates for than the sheriff.[1]

On the other side of the argument, in an editorial by Las Cruces Sun-News, the publication stated its opposition to Amendment 2, claiming, ."..we recognize there is always a slowdown whenever a new leader takes over, but we trust that the long-time staff members will keep county departments running smoothly during the transition, and will provide the institutional knowledge necessary for any successful organization. Eight years in office would seem like plenty of time to make whatever changes or reforms an office holder deems necessary."[2]

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