The Santa Clara City Council began working earnestly Tuesday to secure a replacement for Mayor Jamie Matthews, whose unexpected retirement announcement stunned residents and city officials this week. Matthews made the announcement Monday, effective immediately. The timing could not have been more peculiar, coming just 24 hours after his city hosted the 50th Super Bowl.
"I don't think anyone has had time to digest it," said Councilwoman Debi Davis. "There's a lot of shock. It was a little blindsiding."
To get the ball rolling, the city council officially declared the office vacant on Tuesday. A special meeting on the mayor’s departure is scheduled for Feb 16. At this point, the council could either decide to appoint a replacement, which must happen within 30 days, or put it up for a vote on the 2016 election ballot. This will happen automatically, should the council fail to appoint someone by March 10.
Details of Matthews’ retirement are scant so far. The two-term mayor, who had nearly three years left to serve, offered little explanation other than to confirm that he is in good health.
“It’s time for me to focus on my family and look forward to the next chapter of my life,” Matthews said.
Matthews’ retirement concludes more than 20 years of public life in Santa Clara. Read more about his decision here.
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