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Sunnyvale City Council Meeting Preview – Jan. 8, 2019

This will be the last Council preview that I post, for obvious reasons.

This meeting is bisected, somewhat, and there are no closed or study sessions this evening.  We start the evening with a special order of the day, certifying the November 6th election results for Council seats 1, 2, and 3.  Per Sunnyvale’s tradition, we do this in January to accommodate the Registrar’s certification time, which extends into December (not even including any possible recounts).

We then have the recognition of re-elected and outgoing (me) councilmembers, which mostly means speeches.  This is followed by the ceremonial oaths of office for the newly elected and re-elected councilmembers, which represents the official changing of the guard.

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Item 2 is the selection of Sunnyvale’s mayor for the next two years. Traditionally, anyone can nominate a candidate (which doesn’t require a second).  The nominees can then give speeches, in the order they were nominated.  Voting is done in multiple rounds, with councilmembers casting only one vote per round, eliminating the lowest vote-getting candidates each round until one candidate gets four or more votes.  Once the new mayor is selected, he or she is immediately seated (trading seats with the outgoing mayor if necessary).

Item 3 is the selection of Sunnyvale’s vice mayor for the next year.  Voting takes place in the same manner as voting for the mayor, although no seating change takes place for the vice mayor.

Item 4 is approval of the Council meeting calendar for the next year.

Item 5 is the appointment and ratification of councilmember intergovernmental assignments. A lot of this was discussed in an earlier study session, but this is the point at which any disputes or dueling interests for assignments get worked out.

And last and pretty much least, item 6 has councilmembers determining seating for the next year. The mayor’s spot is fixed. The vice mayor traditionally sits to the left or right of the mayor to provide assistance (usually to the mayor’s right so as to handle speaker cards). The balance of seats is determined by seniority.

And that’s it. The ceremonial oath of office for the new mayor and vice mayor will take place at the following meeting, to give their families an opportunity to attend.

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