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Editorial: Telethon helps serve local kids

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Just as the full effects of the term-limit law approved by Missouri voters in 1992 are being seen, the House Elections Committee is considering a bill that would extend legislative term limits from the current eight years per chamber to 12 years.

State Rep. Gayle Kingery of Poplar Bluff, who introduced the bill, also thinks it makes sense to lengthen the terms of state representatives to four years from the current two. Four-year terms would give representatives three years to be "effective and efficient" and one year to concentrate on their next campaign, Kingery said.

The Missouri League of Women Voters is in favor of extending term limits to 12 years.

Another bill seeks to put all statewide officeholders under the same service caps -- two four-year terms -- the state treasurer and governor are held to. Currently, the state's lieutenant governor, secretary of state, auditor and attorney general have no limits on length of service.

The long-term effects of the state's current limits remain to be seen. Nobody knows whether eight years is the optimum number for legislators to serve, and there appears to be few complaints about the current setup.

Let's wait and see before making another change.


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