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Breed gives up scheduling special meeting, sets possible interim mayor vote for Jan. 23

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San Francisco City Hall. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)

Ever since Supervisor Aaron Peskin called Tuesday for a special Board of Supervisors meeting as early as Jan. 16 to vote on an interim mayor, there’s been endless speculation about when, and if, such a meeting would occur.

As board president, London Breed, who is also acting mayor, can call for a special meeting, which is what Peskin has asked her to do. Six members of the board could also force a special meeting, which could be called with 24-hour notice under The City’s charter.

Meeting on Jan. 16 was taken off the table, the San Francisco Examiner previously reported Wednesday, after Supervisor Malia Cohen told the board clerk and her colleagues Tuesday that she wouldn’t be able to make it — only after she first indicated she could have.

SEE RELATED: Breed willing to schedule vote on interim SF mayor, but date remains uncertain

But Breed’s legislative aide said they were working on a new date. However, just after 4 p.m. Friday, Breed provided a statement to the Examiner.

“We worked with the clerk of the board who can communicate with all members to identify a date next week for a special meeting, including the weekend,” Breed said. “Based on responses there was not a date that worked for all members. This is an item where a full complement of the board should be present. I have directed the clerk to place all items related to the nomination and appointment of an interim mayor at our next meeting scheduled for January 23.”

Peskin had introduced a number of motions Tuesday that would have gone on the agenda for a special meeting, which would have allowed the board to make nominations for an interim mayor and vote on them. If there was no special meeting, those items would have appeared on the next scheduled meeting on Jan. 23 — which is now what will occur. Any member of the board could automatically send them to a board committee without debate, postponing a board vote on naming an interim mayor.

It would take six votes to appoint an interim mayor and a member of the board cannot vote for his or herself. Without Breed being able to vote for herself, the board is split five-to-five between the moderate bloc aligned with Breed and the progressive bloc, which has called for a caretaker mayor — someone who wouldn’t run in the June mayoral election.

Breed is among eight candidates who filed by Tuesday’s deadline to run for mayor. Former state Sen. Mark Leno, Supervisor Jane Kim and former Supervisor Angela Alioto are the three other well-known candidates who filed. Four other lesser known candidates are Amy Farah Weiss, who ran against Lee in his re-election bid, Richie Greenberg, Ellen Lee Zhou, who helped organize anti-cannabis rallies, and Michelle Bravo.

Those who support a caretaker have called for a vote as soon as possible, arguing primarily that having Breed continue serving in the dual roles of acting mayor and a board member compromises the separation of powers between the legislative and executive branches.

Also, candidates in the race argue Breed shouldn’t have the power of incumbency, which would give her a significant advantage.

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