San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, racked by burgeoning allegations he sexually harassed several women, has reached a deal that calls for him to resign as chief executive of the country’s eighth largest city, NBC San Diego is reporting
Filner was seen loading boxes from City Hall into an SUV Wednesday night following a mediation session headed by retired federal judge J. Lawrence Irving. Wednesday’s was the third session involving Filner, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith, and others.
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Details are scheduled to be released after a closed City Council session Friday afternoon. If Filner does resign, fellow Democrat and City Council President Todd Gloria would assume the duties of the mayor’s office until a special election can be held.
Despite confirmation from Goldsmith that a deal has been reached, those behind an initiative to recall the mayor say they will not stop collecting signatures.
“We will continue pushing ahead gathering signatures until Bob Filner resigns, but I am cautiously optimistic that our efforts have helped push him out the door,” said Benjamin Katz, who once worked for Filner but now serves as chair of the tech team in the recall effort.
Recall organizers say they collected more than 11,000 signatures within the first three days of the effort’s launch. They have 39 days to secure the 101,597 signatures needed to force a recall election.
At a news conference following Wednesday’s mediation session, Goldsmith urged caution regarding what is being reported.
“The City Council has not heard of this proposal and our process at City Hall as well as the mediation process requires that we maintain the confidentiality of the proposal until they have heard of it,” he said, according to UT San Diego
Filner, the first Democratic mayor of San Diego in two decades, is a former Freedom Rider, City Councilman, San Diego school board member, and longtime congressman. His abrasive style had been well documented, but his downfall began after his former director of communications, Irene McCormack Jackson, filed suit accusing him of such things as putting her in a headlock, making sexually suggestive comments, and once saying she should come to work with no panties. Over the last few weeks 17 other women have stepped forward with allegations of sexual harassment.
Attorney Gloria Allred, who is representing McCormack Jackson, was scheduled to hold a news conference in her Los Angeles office at 4 p.m. Eastern time.
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