Wondering about the delay in naming a successor to Arredondo, I contacted Board spokesman Richard de Uriarte before the general election.
He told me today [Nov 1] that the Board does not want to be in a position to pick winners and losers for next week's election. Further, they expect to put this item on the agenda for the Board's first meeting after next Tuesday, tentatively scheduled for November 13. If Mendez wins next week, the Board expects to then name him to fill the vacated seat right away.After posting on November 1 that the Board expected to appoint Juan Mendez, several people brought up the issue of term limits.
Pursuant to the Arizona Constitution, Article IV, Part 2, Section 21,
The terms of office of the members of succeeding legislatures shall be two years. No state senator shall serve more than four consecutive terms in that office, nor shall any state representative serve more than four consecutive terms in that office. This limitation on the number of terms of consecutive service shall apply to terms of office beginning on or after January 1, 1993. No legislator, after serving the maximum number of terms, which shall include any part of a term served, may serve in the same office until he has been out of office for no less than one full term. (emphasis added)Well, according to unofficial election results, Juan Mendez was the leading vote getter (21,369 votes) in the Legislative District 26 House race. Mendez' closest Republican opponent, Mary Lou Taylor trails, at this point, by 6,060 votes.
State Rep.-elect Mendez told me over the weekend that he intends to decline the appointment to serve the remaining two months of Arredondo's term. I relayed that information to Board spokesman de Uriarte. So far, it appears no one has contacted either Kristin Gwinn or Randy Keating -- the other two people nominated to represent the old LD17 for the last two months of the 50th Legislature -- about the potential appointment.
When I receive any updated information, I will let you know.