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‘Reclaim New York’ Urging Utica Mayor Not to Sign Term Extension

Photo from Robert Palmieri
Photo from Robert Palmieri

A political action group from New York City is calling on Utica Mayor Rob Palmieri to veto a bill (Local Law No. 3) that was passed by the Common Council back on September 20th, that would extend term limits for council members and the mayor from 8 years to 12 years.  Reclaim New York Initiative is calling on Utica residents to voice their opinion to the mayor and urge him not to vote for the measure.  A public hearing, which is required, is scheduled for Friday morning at City Hall.

“The Common Council’s measure weakens a commonsense ethics reform that helps prevent politicians from consolidating too much power, and keeps government more in touch with the real world by bringing new people to public service.

“The people of Utica installed term limits themselves decades ago with overwhelming support. Instead of respecting the will of the people, the Common Council has chosen to undermine it, directly benefiting themselves, and the Mayor.

“The proposal passed by the Common Council is the wrong policy, being done the wrong way, and Mayor Palmieri should do the right thing and veto it.” 

WIBX had reported during the summer that community members were collecting signatures to have the term limits extended. Mayor Palmieri told WIBX he was “honored” that the people of Utica were so pleased with his performance that they were attempting to change the city charter so that he could serve another term. Later, it was learned that many of the people carrying those petitions were actually city employees.

If Mayor Palmieri signs the bill it will become law, allowing him to run again for mayor when his term expires in 2019.

Here’s how the council voted:

 

  • Maria McNeil – YES
  • David Testa – YES
  • John Jacon – YES
  • Joseph Marino – NO
  • Bill Phillips – YES
  • Samantha Colosimo-Testa – NO
  • Mark Williamson – NO
  • Jack LoMedico – YES
  • Ed Bucciero – NO

In 1992, the citizens of the city overwhelmingly voted (67 percent) for a referendum that limited the council, comptroller and mayor to an 8-year term. Friday’s public hearing is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. at Utica’s City Hall 1 Kennedy Plaza in Utica.

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