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School board term limits ready for House floor

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County school-board members would face an eight-year term limit under a proposed constitutional amendment approved Thursday by the House Education Committee.

In a 14-2 vote, the panel endorsed the measure (HJR 1031), sponsored by Rep. Jason Fischer, R-Jacksonville.

It would limit school board members, who serve four-year terms, to no more than eight consecutive years in office for terms beginning after Nov. 6.

“It aligns with what the term limits are in the (state) Constitution with other state offices,” said Fischer, referring to term limits for state lawmakers, the governor and state Cabinet members.

Rep. Margaret Good, D-Sarasota, voted against the measure, saying local voters should determine who sits on the school boards.

“We want to have local decisions made at the local level,” she said.

The proposed constitutional amendment is now ready for a floor vote, where it would need support from three-fifths of House members to advance to the November ballot.

The Senate is considering a proposal (SJR 194), sponsored by Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, although it would impose a 12-year term limit.