City of West Hollywood Term Limits, Measure C (March 2013)

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A City of West Hollywood Term Limits, Measure C ballot question was on the March 5, 2013 ballot for voters in the City of West Hollywood in Los Angeles County, where it was approved.[1]

Measure C establishes a limit of three 4-year terms for members of the West Hollywood City Council.

Election results

Measure C
Approveda Yes 3,139 59%
These final, certified, results are from the Office of the City Clerk of West Hollywood.



Supporters included:

  • Allegra Allison, Founder Save Tara, Founding Member of the West Hollywood Neighborhood Alliance
  • John Altschul, Planning Commissioner, West Hollywood
  • Larry Block, Owner Block Party Weho, Chairman Disabilities Advisory Board
  • Stephanie J. Harker, Co-Founder Protect Plummer Park
  • Steve Martin, Former President, Stonewall Democratic Club
  • City council member John D'Amico[2]
  • City council candidate Sam Borelli[2]

Arguments in favor

Logo of the "Yes on C" campaign

Arguments in favor of Measure C included:

  • It will "reduce the power and influence of City Hall bureaucrats, lobbyists and other special interests."[3]
  • It will means that "our city council and commissions will be regularly renewed with fresh leadership with new ideas for the future."
  • It will "encourage council members to make their time in office count to the fullest."
  • It will "allow current officeholders an opportunity to serve for up to 12 more years should we choose to re-elect them."
  • It is "modeled on the 12-year term limits adopted for the L.A. County Board of Supervisors and many cities across California."
  • "Term limits have led to more diversity among public officials – making city, county and state governments more representative of the people."
  • "Currently, we have some councilmembers who have been in office more than 20 years. Your YES vote on Measure C will put an end to career politicians, who the longer they stay in office, the less responsive they are to their constituents."
  • "Your YES vote on Measure C will ensure that our city government is more open, honest, effective, accessible and accountable to the voters."[3]



TV ad from the "No on C" campaign

Opponents of Measure C included:

  • Jeffrey Prang, Mayor of West Hollywood
  • Ruth Williams, Public Safety Commissioner
  • Laurence Zakson, Past President West Hollywood Democratic Club
  • Rob Bergstein, Captain, Genesee Neighborhood Watch
  • Ruth Tittle, CEO, Capitol Drugs, Inc.[1]

Arguments against

Arguments in opposition to Measure C included:

  • "Measure C takes away your rights as a voter. Currently you can vote for any candidate for City Council, a newcomer or an experienced councilmember. If Measure C is enacted, you will lose that choice. Experienced candidates won’t be allowed to run for election if Measure C is enacted. Shouldn’t you be allowed to vote for anyone if you think the person has done a good job? Measure C arbitrarily eliminates candidates with experience and knowledge from serving on your City Council."[1]
  • "West Hollywood does not need Measure C. We have elections every two years. Every two years you have the right to vote councilmembers out of office if you don’t like the job they are doing."
  • "West Hollywood is economically strong and we don’t need Measure C. Each year we put money into reserves to handle unexpected costs and to make community improvements. We have effective law enforcement from our Sheriff’s Department. We have extensive social services. We maintain our roads. We have great residents and neighborhoods. Many attribute our success to dedicated and stable leadership at City Hall. Whether you agree or not, we don’t need Measure C for our city to work well."
  • "The state legislature has term limits and no one thinks Sacramento is more effective as a result. When term limits went into effect, the legislature weakened tenants’ rights and couldn’t adopt a budget. We don’t need Sacramento-style dysfunction in West Hollywood."
  • "Those behind Measure C enlisted the support of a Republican consulting group to put Measure C on the ballot. This is the same group that helped pass Proposition 8 which denies marriage to LGBT people."[1]

Ballot question

The question on the ballot:

Measure C: "Shall an ordinance be adopted providing that no person shall serve more than a total of three (3) terms as a member of the West Hollywood City Council, whether served consecutively or non-consecutively, with any portion of a term, whether elected or appointed, counting as a full term?"[4]

Path to the ballot

See also: Laws governing local ballot measures in California

Measure C was on the ballot as an initiated city ordinance. The effort to qualify it for the ballot via the collection of signatures on petitions was led by Elyse Eisenberg, Sheila Lightfoot and Scott Schmidt. Over 4,000 signatures were submitted.[5]

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