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updated: 4/5/2011 9:46 PM

Lakemoor term limits OK'd

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By Abby Scalf

Lakemoor voters overwhelming approved a measure Tuesday that will limit future village presidents and members of the village board to serving three consecutive terms.

With all eight precincts reporting within Lake and McHenry counties, unofficial results showed 264 votes in favor of term limits and 117 against the referendum.

Starting with the April 2013 election, board members and village presidents will be allowed to serve a total of 12 years before they must step aside.

Village President Todd Weihofen, a proponent of the proposal, said the reason for the referendum was a desire to give village citizens more say in the shape of their government.

He pointed to the popularity of term limit legislation in Illinois and across the country.

However, before Tuesday's vote, some experts predicted the referendum could lead to court challenges if approved because it was unclear if state law allowed non-home rule communities, such as Lakemoor, to adopt term limits.

The problem, according to Lake County State's Attorney Michael Waller and Larry Frang, the executive director of the Illinois Municipal League, is the meaning of the words "terms of office" in a section of the state Constitution outlining the powers of those communities.

Waller and Frang said those words may have different interpretations and the matter may ultimately have to be settled by the state's highest court.