SAN DIEGO -- City Council President Todd Gloria, who becomes Acting Mayor when Mayor Bob Filner officially resigns at 5 pm Friday, Aug. 30, is encouraging everyone to get back to work on city business.
Gloria will become the second LGBT politician in San Diego history to temporarily take over the City during a time of great political crisis. The Democrat has representing the North Park-Hillcrest-South Park area since his election to office in 2008.
During the Filner crisis, Gloria and City Councilmember Kevin Faulconer participated in the mediation plea deal that led to Filner's resignation today.
After the City Council voted 7-0 today to accept the plea deal, with two absent Councilmembers, Gloria issued the following statement made in City Council chambers in front of his fellow councilmembers:
“Thank you all for joining me here today. As you know, Mayor Bob Filner has resigned effective Friday, August 30, at 5:00 p.m. Although none of us is glad to have reached this point in our City’s history, I think we all share a sense of relief that we can begin to put this period behind us, and most importantly, fill the leadership void in the Mayor’s office. The City of San Diego needs and deserves a mayor.
“According to Article 15 of the City Charter, the presiding officer of the Council, the Council President, assumes the role of mayor until a special election can be called and a new mayor elected. I stand before you today, humbled by this opportunity to serve our City, and ready to take on the duties of the mayor at 5:01 next Friday. San Diego will have a functioning Mayor’s Office within a matter of days.
“One of our first priorities must be to schedule an election so that voters can choose our next mayor. City Clerk Liz Maland will establish a timeline for that election process as quickly as possible. I have asked her to be prepared to address all the legal and practical requirements by Monday. When the City Clerk is ready, I will work with the City Council to call for the special election.
“Council President Pro Tem Sherri Lightner will lead meetings of the City Council while I fulfill the duties of the mayor. Sherri is a trusted colleague and able Councilmember. I know that she will carry out these duties well.
“Given today’s developments, it is more important than ever to focus our attention on maintaining essential City services. I will address this more directly after Bob Filner leaves office, but I hope current department leadership will work with me to keep the City on an even footing. I appreciate each of these public servants’ commitment and dedication to providing effective municipal services.
“Over the next few months, until an election can be conducted, I will be working together with the Council and the City’s executive team to establish priorities for addressing the concerns facing our City. Our objective is to provide our citizens with a fully functioning City government with ethics, integrity and transparency.
“To that end, work will begin on a number of fronts.
“First, a top-down review of all City departments to ensure they are properly staffed and that their actions comply with all City rules and regulations. This will include swift action on pending items that have languished on Mayor Filner’s desk for months.
“Second, we will address the backlog of requests for public records. I intend to break through the logjam of approvals for these requests and to deliver documents as required under the law in a timely manner.
“Third, I will conduct weekly media briefings to ensure transparency and accountability. We must communicate to our citizens and those who do business with the city, that we are making every effort possible to correct our problems, and that nothing less is acceptable.
“This is not an exhaustive list. I look forward to sharing more about these and other issues remaining from Bob’s time here after I officially assume the role of Mayor.
“As you might anticipate, there will be some staffing changes needed to make this happen. I will announce these changes as they occur.
“I imagine each of you have questions about specific policies, projects and procedures at the City. Today is not the day for addressing those questions. We will get to them without further delay in the coming weeks.
“Thank you in advance for your patience as we work through the challenges that have resulted from Mayor Filner’s time in office and his upcoming resignation. I would like to thank our City Council members who have worked together to guide our City during this time and never lost their focus on serving San Diegans.
“I’d like to express my gratitude to our 10,000 City employees who have continued to work on our behalf every day during this crisis. I will be speaking directly with you in the coming weeks, but in the meantime I ask that you go about your duties as you always do and to put our City and its citizens first.
“Finally, to the people of San Diego, we have all suffered over the past few months. The accusations, the response to those charges, and the horrible debate that has consumed our City have undermined what should have been the beginning of a new and positive era in the way we govern San Diego.
“We have lost ground over the past few months. As of today, we are done losing ground. Our civic nightmare is nearing an end. It is time for San Diegans to come together and for the healing to begin.
“San Diego is back. We are America’s Finest City and we always will be.
“I thank you for the trust you are placing in me.
“Now, it’s time to get to work.”
A date for the special election has not yet be set.