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DeKalb lawmakers amending Stonecrest charter to put term limit on mayor

Jennifer Ffrench-Parker | 3/17/2017, 6 a.m.

A local bill to amend the city of Stonecrest’s charter is seeking to add term limits on the mayor, redraw council district lines, and limit the mayor to to tie-breaking votes.

It made it out of the DeKalb delegation in the Georgia House Wednesday.

State Rep. Doreen Carter, who is sponsoring the legislation, said she and other legislators have been inundated with calls about the fact the Stonecrest charter lacked term limits for the mayor, something that is common among cities in the county and the state.

“We are just addressing key issues brought to us by constituents,” Carter said Thursday. “This is what constituents have contacted us about. This is what they want.”

The amendment seeks to limit the mayor to two consecutive 4-year terms.

Carter, who represents House District 92, said that some of the current council districts lines seem unwieldy and don’t group voters well.

“We are suppose to have people in communities of interest,” she said. “We are going to try to do that.”

The current charter, approved on April 21, 2016, also allows the mayor to vote on every issue before the city council. The amendment will limit the mayor to voting only to break a tie.

Stonecrest residents approved the new 29-square-mile city with a population of 50,000 in the Nov. 8, 2016 referendum. The new city went into effect on Jan. 1, 2017. Its first elections take for mayor and city council take place March 21.

Because it’s a local legislation, Carter said she expects it become law before the general assembly's current session ends.

“It’s tight, but it could be in Rules Committee by Monday,” she said.