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Councilman proposes term limits for Baltimore politicians

A freshman City Councilman is proposing term limits for Baltimore politicians.

City Councilman Isaac "Yitzy" Schleifer, who represents Northwest Baltimore, submitted a bill Monday that would limit Baltimore elected officials — including the mayor, comptroller and council members — to no more than three four-year terms in office.

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Schleifer's bill is a charter amendment that would need approval from voters in the 2018 election to become law. It would take effect in 2020.

He said constituents requested the legislation — the first bill he's introduced.

"Residents in every single neighborhood requested this," Schleifer said. "Although it was not part of my platform, doing the work of my constituents was top of my platform. From Howard Park to Roland Park, this is what the residents waned."

Term limits have been proposed before in Baltimore, but have not been successful. Councilman Bill Henry has proposed them in the past, but his bill died in committee in 2015.

Schleifer said he's spoken with fellow council members and believes he has support for the legislation.

"This is a new progressive City Council and we are agents of change," he said. "If I wasn't confident that it would most likely go through, I would have worked on something that would."

Mayor Catherine Pugh said she would sign the bill if it advances to her desk.

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