Pease v. ZapfAnnotate this Case
In November 1992, San Diego voters approved an amendment to the city charter that established a term limit for members of the San Diego City Council. Bryan Pease was a city council candidate who did not qualify for the November 2018 general election. He contended Councilmember Lorie Zapf, who received the most votes in the primary election, was termed out of office and ineligible to run in the general election, and he should have been placed on the ballot instead. Councilmember Zapf represented District 6 during her first term of office and represented District 2 during her second term of office. As a result of redistricting that occurred during Councilmember Zapf's first term of office, she resided in District 2 for both terms. Based on her residency, Pease contended Councilmember Zapf already served two consecutive terms from the same district and was thus termed out of office. The Court of Appeal determined this interpretation was not supported by the language of the term limit provision and failed to take into account other relevant charter provisions, including the impact of the redistricting provision. “The term limit provision regulates the number of terms an incumbent may serve on behalf of the electors of a given district, and is not dependent solely on residency.” The Court held Councilmember Zapf was eligible for reelection in the November 2018 general election.