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Baker signs home-rule petition allowing Boston to skip a special mayoral election

Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh.Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff

There will be no special mayoral election this year after Governor Charlie Baker signed a home-rule petition Friday.

The petition, which sought to skip a special election to replace Mayor Martin J. Walsh if he is confirmed to be President Biden’s secretary of labor, had already passed the Boston City Council and the Massachusetts House and Senate, and Baker had indicated that he would sign the proposal.

Without the petition, the city charter would have required a special mayoral election if Walsh leaves office before March 5.

He is expected to be confirmed soon, perhaps as early as next week. City Council President Kim Janey will become acting mayor once he leaves office.


So far, City Councilors Michelle Wu, Andrea Campbell, and Annissa Essaibi George and state Representative Jon Santiago have declared their candidacies for mayor.

Residents, advocates, and local politicians had argued that having a special election in addition to this fall’s regularly scheduled mayoral election posed an unnecessary public health risk and placed an avoidable financial burden on the city.

Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @jeremycfox.