Justice Dept. approves Woodland plan

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 10, 2006

WOODLAND – Staggered terms is a reality here.

The United States Department of Justice confirmed via letter there were no objections to the town of Woodland proceeding with the process of introducing staggered terms for the mayor and board of commissioners.

Last summer, the town began the process of approving staggered terms and formally adopted an ordinance amending the town charter on October 6, 2005. That ordinance was then forwarded to the Justice Department to confirm there were no objections to the change.

&uot;The attorney general does not interpose any objection to the specified changes,&uot; John Tanner, the chief of the voting section said in a letter dated December 21.

The ordinance adopted in October specified the two highest vote-getters would receive four-year terms running from 2005-2009 while the two lowest vote-getting winners and the mayor would receive two-year terms. Whomever is elected to fill those three seats in 2007 will serve four-year terms.

According to elections results certified by the Northampton County Board of Elections, Commissioner Les Clark and Commissioner David Cooper were the two receiving the highest number of votes and therefore were elected to four-year terms.

Mayor Jay Jenkins, Commissioner Joe Blythe and Commissioner Joe Mitchell will be up for reelection in 2007.