Capitol Alert

It’s official: Gavin Newsom and his family will move to governor’s mansion in Sacramento

Look out, Sacramento. Here come the Newsoms.

As he is sworn in Monday to become California’s 40th governor, Gavin Newsom and his family will also officially take up residence in the historic governor’s mansion in midtown Sacramento, he announced Friday.

Newsom, his wife, Jennifer Siebel Newsom, and their four children will be joined by two family dogs and a bunny rabbit. They will live in the mansion “for the immediate future,” spokesman Nathan Click said in a statement.

“Like any parents balancing the modern demands of work and family, the Governor-elect and incoming First Partner have spent a significant amount of time over the last few weeks considering where to reside as a family, balancing the unique full-time responsibilities of their jobs with the best interests of their four young children,” Click said. “To best serve the people of California while also maximizing family time together, the Newsoms have therefore decided to move to Sacramento.”

The move was not a certainty for the Newsoms, who had expressed enthusiasm on the campaign trail about living in the governor’s mansion but were wary of committing to the idea.

Days before he won election in November, Newsom was skeptical about whether he would move his family from Marin County to the capital.

“We have four kids in school, and so all these things, honestly, I really haven’t gotten my arms around it,” he told The Bee at the time. He also suggested that it was no longer essential for California’s governor to be based in Sacramento, because technology and transportation had made it possible to do the job from anywhere.

“The old construct that you’re stuck in some office in a state Capitol is rather absurd,” he said. “This is not a desk job.”

Shortly after the victory, Siebel Newsom said the family probably would not make a decision until after the school year ended.

Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, a close adviser of Newsom’s, was among those who tried to convince him to relocate. He was excited to hear Friday about the move, which he said made a statement about Sacramento’s transformation to a “major cosmopolitan city.”

Newsom once famously dismissed Sacramento as “just so dull” and told a friend that he spent “like one day a week, tops” in Sacramento, because “there’s no reason.” Now, Steinberg noted, Newsom and his wife were choosing to raise their family in the city, even though they could have stayed put.

“I would have completely understood if they made a different decision,” Steinberg said. “I am so happy for the Newsoms and for Sacramento. This city will welcome them with open arms.”

Outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown moved out of the governor’s mansion on Friday. He had lived there since 2015, when he completed a multimillion-dollar renovation of the historic downtown Sacramento home, which had not housed a California executive since Ronald Reagan in 1967.

Brown occasionally hosted public events there, such as trick-or-treating, as well as private dinners with lawmakers and other political players.

The Newsoms “look forward to getting to know their new neighbors and becoming an active part of the larger Sacramento community,” Click said. “They also thank Governor Brown and Anne Gust Brown for their immeasurable support and generosity during this transition.”

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