New Boston mayor to take office just 2 weeks after election

September 24, 2021 GMT

BOSTON (AP) — Whoever wins Boston’s mayoral race on Nov. 2 won’t have much time to prepare to step into the office.

The two candidates — City Councilors Annissa Essaibi George and Michelle Wu — met Thursday with acting Mayor Kim Janey to discuss the timeline. The three agreed on a transfer of power Nov. 16, just two weeks after the election.

“Starting these conversations with Councilors Wu and Essaibi George now helps ensure the new mayor will be ready to do her job and address the concerns of Boston’s residents on day one,” Janey said in a statement after the meeting at the Parkman House.

Janey was sworn in as mayor of Boston on March 24 as the city’s first female and first Black mayor after former Mayor Marty Walsh was appointed U.S. Secretary of Labor earlier this year by President Joe Biden.

To prepare for the transfer of power, Janey will lead administrative discussions with both Wu and George. In mid-October, both candidates will receive summaries of the general structure and operation of city departments. More detailed department briefings will follow in early November, once the mayor-elect has been chosen.


Wu and Essaibi George defeated other candidates — including Janey, Councilor Andrea Campbell and John Barros, the city’s former economic development chief — in a preliminary election earlier this month meant to winnow the field to two.

Whoever wins on Nov. 2 will make history as the first woman and first person of color to be elected mayor. Wu’s parents immigrated to the U.S. from Taiwan. Essaibi George describes herself as a first-generation Arab-Polish American.

Throughout its long history, Boston has elected only white men to the top office.

Timing for the transition is dictated by statute, according to Janey’s office, which requires that the new mayor be sworn-in after election results are certified.

After the election, there is a required 10-day recount petition period during which results cannot be certified. The close of the recount petition period is 5 p.m. Nov. 12. If a recount is not requested, the city’s Board of Election Commissioners will certify the results Nov. 15, allowing the transition to take place the next day.

All of the candidates are Democrats. Mayoral races in Boston do not include party primaries.