By Friday afternoon, Council President Todd Gloria — a 35-year-old native San Diegan — might take over the reins of the city, at least for a few months. But it won’t be as simple as referring to him as hizzoner.
While the job of interim chief is defined, for the most part, his temporary title isn’t. That’s not the only difference between old and new. While the city has a “strong mayor” system, Gloria would be anything but a super-powered top official.
He would actually be more like a “Caretaker Mayor,” said Gil Cabrera, a local attorney and former chairman of the city’s Ethics Commission. That’s all thanks to the wisdom of the City Charter, a kind of municipal constitution that strictly limits the powers of anyone who temporarily takes charge at City Hall without being appointed or elected. (Appointments are only allowed when there’s less than one year left in the term of the mayor who’s left office.)
Here are some questions and answers about the man who may be in charge, sort of, at least through the required one or two special elections to choose a new mayor.