We can be thankful the Florida Constitution Revision Commission meets only every 20 years.

It would be foolish to allow it to gather more frequently after watching how it botched this year's proposed changes to Florida's Constitution — as shown by state judges temporarily pulling several confusing amendments off the ballot, and with the frequent criticism about bundling unrelated subjects together.

Nonetheless, the ballot is what it is. And one amendment that survived the scrutiny is Amendment 10, which is worthy of support. Thus, we encourage voters to back it.

Amendment 10 illustrates the criticism of the CRC's haphazard approach. It includes a provision to enshrine in the Constitution the Department of Veterans Affairs as a permanent agency; it formally creates a state office of domestic security and counter-terrorism and cements its function within the Florida Department of Law Enforcement; it requires the Legislature to open its session in January, rather than March, in even-number years; and it ensures that voters must elect the constitutional officers for county sheriff, tax collector, property appraiser, elections supervisor and circuit-court clerk.

These things have nothing in common per se. And some of these things already exist — for example, FDLE's anti-terrorism operations and the state VA.

If there is a link among them, it is that making them part of the Constitution would remove them from the purview of capricious politicians.

This is important considering the election of county-level officials.

Sheriff Grady Judd, and the other 65 elected sheriffs in Florida, are advocating adoption of Amendment 10.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, eight counties stand to be directly affected by this change: Brevard, Broward, Clay, Duval, Miami-Dade, Orange, Osceola and Volusia.

In some cases, those counties have changed how they hire leaders to run some of the offices in question or how those agencies operate. Additionally, the sheriff issue affects Volusia County, which splits its jail operation from the sheriff's office, and Miami-Dade, which abolished the sheriff's post in favor of an appointed police chief in the 1970s.

Opponents of Amendment 10, such as the League of Women Voters, believe it undermines counties' home-rule options and restricts powers of local governments.

We're sympathetic to the home rule argument. As we've seen in recent complaints aired by the County Commission and the School Board, limits on authority imposed by outside forces often fails to adequately serve local constituents.

But, on its website, the League notes, oddly, Amendment 10 "limits the voters in local communities from deciding on the election of county officers." Judd countered that Amendment 10 actually strengthens that. He's right.

The sheriff acknowledged that this might not be an issue within Polk County right now. But, he adds, the future could change. And it would be counterproductive to invest control of the constitutional agencies under the County Commission or a single official, like a countywide-elected mayor.

Ratifying Amendment 10 helps retain the interlocking system of checks and balances that has existed for decades, Judd argues, and preserves the voters' right to determine who leads those agencies.

"I don't think you should ever give away your right to vote," said Judd. "Our forefathers were wise by not inculcating all that power and authority in one branch of government. The power is in the people, not in the government system."

Reject Amendment 10, Judd notes, and voters could "give away your ability to hire and fire your government."

Which is what elections are all about. Polk County voters, like those throughout the state, should seek to protect and retain that ability. Vote for Amendment 10.