Newsom Family to Live in Governor's Mansion

California Governor's Mansion (photo courtesy Mark James Miller)

Governor-elect Gavin Newsom, his wife Jennifer and their four children will be the latest in a wave of Bay Area transplants moving to Sacramento.  A spokesperson for Newsom ended weeks of speculation today with the announcement that California's new First Family will, in fact, leave Marin County for Sacramento and will live in the Governor's Mansion at 1526 H Street.  Early in his eight-year term as Leiutenant Governor, Newsom was quoted as saying he found Sacramento "dull" and spent "like one day a week, tops" in the city "because there's no reason".

Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, who has been advising Newsom during the transition, is said to have lobbied hard for the Newsoms to move to Sacramento.  Steinberg says Newsom's decision to move his family here makes a statement about Sacramento's status as a "major cosmopolitan city."

The governor-elect's spokesman Nathan Click says practical considerations played a part in the family's decision.  “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.”

Newsom, who will be sworn in as California's 40th governor on Monday, will be the 15th to live in the mansion, which was built in 1877.  Thirteen governors lived in the Victorian, but in 1967, Nancy Reagan famously refused to live there, calling it a "firetrap".  The Reagans relocated to a home on 45th Street and work began on a new, contemporary mansion in Carmichael.   

Reagan's successor, Jerry Brown, refused to occupy the new mansion when he took office in 1975, calling it a "Taj Mahal", and lived in a downtown loft with a mattress on the floor.  Subsequent governors have had other living arrangements, with Arnold Schwarzenegger often flying daily between his Los Angeles home and Sacramento via private plane.  

Brown, whose father, Pat, was the last governor to live in the mansion for his entire term in office (1959-1967), oversaw a restoration and renovation of the mansion during his third and fourth terms and moved in with wife Anne Gust Brown in 2015.


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