Photo by Jamie Lytle
Bob Filner’s last official act as mayor may have been to sign a stop-use order to thwart a controversial drive-thru window at a North Park Jack in the Box, a move undone just moments after Filner’s resignation.
Other than that Thursday signature, it’s difficult to point to any other action Filner took in his last week as mayor.
On Friday, Filner’s final day in office, even the city’s chief operating officer acknowledged he wasn’t sure whether Filner made an appearance in the office on his last day at City Hall.
And Filner, who became known for his constant public appearances during his eight-month mayorship, didn’t make any on Friday.
What Filner prioritized in his final days as San Diego mayor is a mystery, even among top staffers and the official set to replace him. It also remains unclear why the 26-year politician requested an extra week in office after he reached a settlement agreement with the city that included his resignation.
Interim Chief Operating Officer Walt Ekard said in an email that he never saw Filner or even talked to Filner during his last week as mayor.
“I have not spoken to him this week and have not had any specific instructions from him,” Ekard wrote.
Lee Burdick, Filner’s chief of staff, also couldn’t say why the mayor had chosen to stay in City Hall for an extra week – or what he attempted to accomplish.
I emailed her earlier this week to ask about the outgoing mayor’s priorities and any initiatives, policies or projects he intended to push for in his final days in office. I also asked whether Filner had conferred with fellow staffers to issue final directives and if he had revealed why he wanted an extra week in office.
Burdick, who lost her job when the mayor’s resignation became effective at 5:01 p.m. Friday, replied to say she couldn’t answer my questions.
“I wish I could help, but I have no answers for you,” Burdick wrote in a Friday email.
I attempted to clarify whether she preferred not to comment.
“I do not know the answers to your questions,” Burdick replied.
Council President Todd Gloria, who became the city’s interim mayor late Friday, also couldn’t speak to the mayor’s whereabouts.
“Council President Gloria is unaware of Mayor Filner’s activities this week,” a spokeswoman said early Friday.
And though Gloria helped negotiate Filner’s resignation, his spokeswoman said the interim mayor also isn’t sure why Filner wanted to hold onto the mayor’s office for another week.
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