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Mayor and city council impose term limits on volunteers to boards and commissions


This news story was published on December 7, 2016.
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Eric Bookmeyer made sure no one can serve too long on a volunteer position in Mason City

MASON CITY – An ordinance pushed by Mayor Eric Bookmeyer was passed by the city council Tuesday night, imposing term limits on volunteers to boards and commissions that serve the city.

Board and commission memberships in Mason City now have term limits after Mayor Eric Bookmeyer brought the idea to the city council last month. The council approved the measure Tuesday night on third reading. This change to city code applies only to volunteer positions, not elected positions.

Bookmeyer has meddled in the way boards and commissions have worked in Mason City for years. Applications go to the mayor, who then peruses them and takes the ones he wants to the council for approval.

His actions have not been without controversy in the past.

Back in 2011, Bookmeyer told a Mason City woman, Kathy Loeckle, then-Chairwoman of the Mason City Human Rights Commission, that “he wants younger people with a fresher perspective” on the Commission as he refused to act on her application for re-appointment.  She was aged in her 50’s at the time.

In response, as word got out about what Bookmeyer said, senior citizens felt hurt by his comments.

One senior wrote a letter to the Mayor and said “My goodness, what are you thinking? To say you need ‘young people with fresh ideas’ is an incredible lack of respect and is age discrimination.”

Two city council members at the time – Don Nelson and Max Weaver – took issue with Bookmeyer’s attack on elderly volunteers.

Max Weaver said at the time, “Every day, City Hall learns something new about this kid. He reminds us of a bratty adolescent that wants all the power. It’s real simple. Mr. Mayor, you need to apologize to his community you call home and its elders.”

“Could this be considered age discrimination?” Mr. Nelson said.

The new statute with the term limits states:

A. All members of a City of Mason City board or commission must reside in the city limits of Mason City.

B. Citizens will only serve on one City of Mason City board or commission at a time unless otherwise designated by City Code.

C. No board or commission member will serve more than five (5) consecutive terms on the same board or commission

Exception: Boards and commissions that have six (6) year terms will serve no more than three (3) consecutive terms on the same board or commission.

Section 2: That all ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict with the provisions of this ordinance are hereby repealed.

Section 3: If any section, provision, or part of this ordinance shall be adjudged to be invalid or unconstitutional, such adjudication shall not affect the validity of the Ordinance as a whole or any section thereof, or part thereof, not adjudged invalid or unconstitutional.

Section 4: This ordinance shall be in full force and effect upon its final passage, approval and publication as required by law.

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5 Responses to Mayor and city council impose term limits on volunteers to boards and commissions

  1. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    December 7, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    Yea, time to drain this swamp!

  2. Avatar

    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    December 7, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    Why don’t they set up term limits on the mayor and the council?

    • Avatar

      anonymight Reply Report comment

      December 7, 2016 at 7:47 pm

      There are term limits on mayor and council members, they are called elections.

      • Avatar

        Anonymous Reply Report comment

        December 8, 2016 at 7:08 am

        Not the same thing and you damn well know it. Once they get in they create their power base like Drunkmeyer did and it is hard to get them out. With term limits they are out when it is time. Of course you establishment pukes don’t like that.