Tree Davis to Observe National Arbor Day with City of Davis and Enterprise’s Bob Dunning
Letter: The “WRIGHT” choice for council

Wright for Davis!

Wright-lawn-flowers-cropBy Larry Guenther

I live in District 3, and I emphatically support Francesca Wright for Davis City Council.

We are governed by a representative democracy. On a City Council of five members, those individuals need to represent many and diverse groups. So the primary traits I like to see in a Council Member are the ability to A) listen, and B) create win-win solutions from situations where there appears to be adversity. People talk about candidates having a specific 'expertise.' My view is that the expertise required of a true representative is the ability to bring people of different views together to come up with solutions that work for everyone.

As a member of the Tree Commission, I signed the open letter on "Improving City of Davis Decision Making," written by other Davis Commissioners in 2020. This letter laid out many great steps to improve engagement with the Commissions and to improve the outcomes of issues that came before City Council. I felt then and, as a current commissioner, I still feel that there are fundamental issues with the participation of City Commissions and that these recommendations would address these issues very well. There has yet to be any movement on these recommendations.  I believe that Francesca Wright actually appreciates the Commission system and the expertise the members of these commissions bring to the table. As someone who I have witnessed really listening to people and incorporating their ideas into a final plan of action, I have no doubt that Francesca Wright would move forward on really engaging the Commissions and using them to their full potential.

There is also the issue of the status quo and the 'establishment.' Francesca Wright believes that the status quo 'needs improvement' and she is definitely not part of the establishment. I truly feel that the City of Davis no longer deserves the reputation of a place of innovation. As one fellow Commissioner quipped, "Davis puts the 'no' in innovation." And while Village Homes and bike paths are great, they were innovations 50 and 60 years ago. There is precious little in recent history that is innovative. So from the standpoint of change, there is no comparison on who would advocate for change from the status quo.

A quote from Alan Hirsch in "The Neighborhood Voting Flier," is spot on: "Francesca’s skills in coalition and consensus building are needed for our community to move forward on a wide range of issues--from housing and budgets to land use and economic development. These skills will be critical in developing and implementing a long overdue new General Plan."

I worked extensively with Francesca in Yolo People Power and I have never witnessed a group so diverse and so passionate about their own issues. I've never seen larger potential for 'missing the moment.' Francesca truly led that group to come together and produce a set of work that has, quite literally, changed and improved the City of Davis. She listened, she found the common threads, and she led that group to deliver evidence-based, deliverable goals to improve our City.

After the 'Picnic Day Incident,' Yolo People Power did the research and advocated for a Police Accountability Commission and an Independent Police Auditor, the model adopted by the City. After the murder of George Floyd, and at the request of the Chair of the Social Services Commission, Yolo People Power recruited a research team and created nine recommendations that the City should adopt to improve public safety - and Police Officer safety. Almost 800 Davis residents signed a letter endorsing these recommendations, and they were adopted by the Joint Subcommittee on Public Safety and recommended to City Council. These are just two of the many reasons she won the 2021 Thong Hy Huynh Memorial Award in Civil Rights Advocacy.

Francesca listens to all, keeps things moving forward, and advocates for the best plan that works for everyone. And isn't that who we want on City Council?

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