Heated debate as Yonkers City Council considers extending term limits again

It was a fiery meeting filled with public outbursts from people on both sides of the issue as the future of Yonkers' politics was on full display.

News 12 Staff

Nov 16, 2022, 11:57 AM

Updated 553 days ago

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A packed, often loud, Yonkers City Council meeting was held Tuesday evening, as city leaders discussed extending the amount of time they could serve in office.
It was a fiery meeting filled with public outbursts from people on both sides of the issue as the future of Yonkers' politics was on full display.
Those in favor of extending term limits and those against packed the Yonkers legislative chambers Tuesday night.
In a 4-2 vote, the council moved the charter amendment to a vote to enact it before the full board next week. The board voted to reconsider that decision, which ultimately failed in a 3-3 tie.
Those in support said they prefer the stability Mayor Mike Spano and others have brought to the city.
"Mayor Spano has done a fantastic job. We all support him. He's a local and his past terms have brought nothing but prosperity and stability to the city,” Shawn Nagpal, of Yonkers.
Those against it said the board was overstepping the will of the people.
"Sixteen years is far too long. I don't want to see them extend term limits. I want to see them repeal it back to the original two, four-year terms. Eight years and then give someone else a chance,” says Kisha Skipper, of the Yonkers NAACP.
The change would extend term limits for the mayor, city council president, and city council members from three four-year terms to four four-year terms.
This would open the door for Spano to run again, something he told News 12 he was strongly considering last month
The board previously expanded term limits from two to three in 2018 and despite public backlash, Spano ran the next year and received nearly three-quarters of the vote.
Republican Councilman Anthony Merante put forward a resolution to put the term-limit question to a referendum next November, but it failed in a 3-3 vote to get to a committee.
The change would also allow Republican Majority Leader Mike Breen and Democrat Councilwoman Corazon Pineda Isaac to run again once their third terms expire.
There will be a public hearing at City Hall next Monday at 6:30 p.m., followed by a vote to change the charter the next day.


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