By kalea hall
Canfield voters approved two city charter amendments Tuesday.
One amendment places term limits on members of boards, commissions and committees.
The other will give residents the ability to speak at a board, commission or committee meeting while issues are being discussed.
Based on unofficial results, the amendment establishing term limits for boards passed by only three votes, which means it will be subject to an automatic recount. The other amendment won by about 9 percent.
“I am pleased that they passed,” said Frank Micchia, the resident who proposed the amendments. “I think it is going to bring new people in the system and avoid reappointing the same people.”
Council members and the mayor of Canfield opposed the amendments.
“I think it is a mandate by the people, if they want to change the form of government,” Mayor William Kay said.
Micchia wanted to get new people with new ideas working in the community and wanted to see people have a chance to voice their opinions during the meetings. Residents currently are allowed to offer comments before the meeting starts, but not during the meeting.
In total, there are five boards with appointed positions and no term limits. The amendment will give each member a term of three years with a maximum of two consecutive terms.
“We are losing quite a few dedicated, knowledgeable and hard working committee members,” Kay said.
Kay said allowing people to discuss issues during a meeting will be similar to a town-hall meeting.
“I am thinking it is going to be a challenge to control discussions,” Kay said.
Last year, Micchia’s amendment to place term limits on both the mayor and city-council members passed. The mayor’s term is now three years and a council member’s term is two years.