Changes could be coming to the way the Orange County mayor is elected.
The Orange County Commission voted 6 to 1 in favor of a referendum proposing to move countywide elections to presidential elections years and change the mayor’s time in office on Tuesday.
The resolution will be placed on the ballot and will be up for vote in November.
Under the amendment, Mayor Teresa Jacobs would run for a new four year term if she wins re-election this year; this would mean 10 total years in office of for Jacobs.
The referendum was approved by Jacobs, who does not currently have an opponent in the mayoral race, and five other commissioners. Ted Edwards was the only commissioner who voted against the proposal.
“Anything that we do to alter the language, I think, would be suspect and undermine the public’s confidence in us and I think that the public’s confidence in us is a much more valuable thing for us to protect than the risk that the public may be misled by this [amendment],” said Jacobs.
Competing charter changes would make Orange County races either all partisan or nonpartisan; another would add term limits for constitutional officers.
A petition initiated by Citizens for Informed Elections garnered more than 50,000 signatures in support for the proposal.
“This is just another opportunity for the voters of Orange County to know who they are voting for when they walk into that booth on Election Day,” said Sean Ashby, the petition organizer.