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Salter Rejects 3rd Term: 'Change Is Important'

January 06, 1994|G. JEANETTE AVENT | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Beverly Hills Mayor Maxwell H. Salter announced this week that he will not seek reelection to the City Council in April, saying eight years on the council is more than enough for any one official.

Salter, 73, disclosed his retirement plan in a brief speech at the start of Tuesday's council meeting. Two seats, the ones held by Salter and Councilman Robert K. Tanenbaum, are on the April 12 ballot.

Salter said his family and supporters had encouraged him to run for a third four-year term because he brought business experience to city government, but he said he decided it was time for new leaders with new ideas.

"I am a firm believer in eight years and two terms of service," Salter said. "Change is important and healthy. After eight years, we begin to become too accepting of conditions, too willing to wait for progress and too much a part of the system. Experience is valuable, but fresh new approaches to problem-solving revitalize our city government."

Salter, who received a standing ovation from his council colleagues and people in the audience, said that although he will not be a candidate, he has "no intention of retreating from involvement in civic affairs."

Salter is chairman of Beno's Family Fashions, a 55-store clothing chain that he built starting with a single Army-Navy store in San Luis Obispo.

z He was first elected to the council in 1986 and reelected in 1990. He held the largely ceremonial post of mayor, which is rotated among the five council members, during the 1989-90 and 1993-94 fiscal years.

He cited among his accomplishments his efforts to make government more responsive to residents and his role in the passage of a $77-million school bond approved by voters last year.

Salter's announcement, which came two weeks after the opening of the qualifying period for council candidates, ensures that at least one new face will appear on the council after the April election.

To date, seven residents, including incumbent Tanenbaum, have taken out nominating papers.

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