Sacramento Bee Endorses Jim Provenza for Yolo County Supervisor

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Two years ago, there was not much difference between the endorsements of the Davis Enterprise and the endorsements of the Sacramento Bee. In the key races that impacted Davis, both endorsed Ruth Asmundson and Mike Levy for Davis City Council and Jeff Reisig for District Attorney. So when the Davis Enterprise earlier endorsed the pro-growth slate for City Council and John Ferrera for County Supervisor, we figured it was only a matter of time before the Sacramento Bee followed suit.

In reality, while the Sacramento Bee remains on the side of those candidates on the issue of growth, to their credit, they have looked beyond the growth issue when making endorsements. Hence Cecilia Escamilla-Greenwald and Sue Greenwald were able to gain the endorsement for city council and now Jim Provenza has been endorsed for County Supervisor.

The Bee writes:

“The 4th District includes a big chunk of the city of Davis, the heart of the slow-growth movement in the county. When Yolo supervisors even dared to discuss the possibility of permitting a housing development attached to a much-coveted stem cell research facility proposed on county land at the edge of Davis, activists threatened a recall campaign. It’s just one indication of how careful the 4th District supervisor must be in approaching this issue.

Yolo supervisors have rightly fought to prevent development on the county’s agricultural lands and steer growth into cities. All the candidates promise to protect the county’s agricultural resources. All agree that some growth is needed to ensure the county does not stagnate economically.

But as important as growth issues are, Yolo’s most pressing issue in the county’s precarious finances. A few years ago, county employees were forced to take furloughs. With the county facing a $5.9 million projected deficit this year, employees are being asked to take voluntary leaves.”

So why do they pick in the end Jim Provenza? “As a member of the Davis School Board Jim Provenza has the deeper, more expansive experience with local government.”

The Bee actually likes all three candidates, but in a close decision decided to endorse Jim Provenza.

As the Vanguard wrote in response to the Enterprises endorsement:

John Ferrera is a good person, on statewide issues and national and international issues, there is probably very little if anything on which we disagree. However, as this race has gone on, it has become clear to me that he is in the other camp on local land use issues which remain the key hallmark of the County Supervisor race.

Recently, both candidates were asked about land use issues. Jim Provenza was publicly against Covell Village. John Ferrera has recently acknowledged he was for Covell Village, although according to my sources he has also stated his opposition to it.

Second, Jim Provenza strongly supports Measure J. John Ferrera took more of the Don Saylor position, the public likes it, but he was less succinct about his view.

Third, when the county threatened to develop on Davis’ periphery, Jim Provenza came to the meeting in July and argued strongly against such development. He referred to the proposed developments along I-80 as the congestion corridor. John Ferrera as far as I can tell was not at that meeting and certainly did not speak at that meeting.

While both candidates promise to handle city-county relations better than they were handled in 2007, only Jim Provenza has flat out supported the pass-through agreement.

When I interview John Ferrera last fall here was his response to a question of would he support the current pass-through agreement:

“The pass-through agreement is twenty years old. It’s only received minor updates and discussions and I think that the changing relationship between the state and the counties and the state and the cities, with the growth of the university, with other things that have happened in our world that have changed over 20 years, that we really need to take a hard look and make sure that it’s doing what it need to do for the county and for the city.”

While Cathy Kennedy clearly needs to gain some experience with local government, she could become a very formidable candidate down the line. She has a level of sincerity and infectious enthusiasm that serve her well and tend to win people over.

This race is likely going to November with Jim Provenza and John Ferrera squaring off. Cathy Kennedy however has impressed a number of people along the way and could become a player in deciding who wins in November.

Meanwhile, the Sacramento Bee has now endorsed the three slow growth candidates in Davis with the best prospects for winning. It was “stunning” (for lack of a better word) to see the Davis Enterprise overlook the experience of people like Jim Provenza when they made their endorsement. The Sacramento Bee fortunately has not replicated that mistake.

—Doug Paul Davis reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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12 thoughts on “Sacramento Bee Endorses Jim Provenza for Yolo County Supervisor”

  1. south davis voter

    Congratulations Jim. I’m glad that the Bee made a wise choice with their endorsement. We need a county supervisor who is going to represent and listen to the will of the people and not just look out for their own self interestm

  2. south davis voter

    Congratulations Jim. I’m glad that the Bee made a wise choice with their endorsement. We need a county supervisor who is going to represent and listen to the will of the people and not just look out for their own self interestm

  3. south davis voter

    Congratulations Jim. I’m glad that the Bee made a wise choice with their endorsement. We need a county supervisor who is going to represent and listen to the will of the people and not just look out for their own self interestm

  4. south davis voter

    Congratulations Jim. I’m glad that the Bee made a wise choice with their endorsement. We need a county supervisor who is going to represent and listen to the will of the people and not just look out for their own self interestm

  5. Ill Say It Again

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Measure J is not about no growth, but about “smart growth”. Citizens can disagree on how many houses we should build, what the rate of growth should be, whether environmental issues should be paramount or not, etc. Bottom line is Davisites see the cost of city services escalating at an alarming degree. The school district fallout is but one example of what can happen if there is poor fiscal management. Vallejo going bankrupt is but another example.

    Thus this election will be more about Measure J, the sphere of influence, peripheral development – because everybody knows residential housing ultimately costs the taxpayer big bucks because of the increased costs of city services that will be required for any new housing development. On top of that, I suspect citizens are beginning to be aware of the problem of developers promising schools that the school district does not have the money to operate.

    Growth and fiscal management are very inter-related. John Q. Public can see increases in taxes of all kinds, along with increases in water and sewer rates coming down the pike – and want to keep the financial impact of any new development to a manageable level!

  6. Ill Say It Again

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Measure J is not about no growth, but about “smart growth”. Citizens can disagree on how many houses we should build, what the rate of growth should be, whether environmental issues should be paramount or not, etc. Bottom line is Davisites see the cost of city services escalating at an alarming degree. The school district fallout is but one example of what can happen if there is poor fiscal management. Vallejo going bankrupt is but another example.

    Thus this election will be more about Measure J, the sphere of influence, peripheral development – because everybody knows residential housing ultimately costs the taxpayer big bucks because of the increased costs of city services that will be required for any new housing development. On top of that, I suspect citizens are beginning to be aware of the problem of developers promising schools that the school district does not have the money to operate.

    Growth and fiscal management are very inter-related. John Q. Public can see increases in taxes of all kinds, along with increases in water and sewer rates coming down the pike – and want to keep the financial impact of any new development to a manageable level!

  7. Ill Say It Again

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Measure J is not about no growth, but about “smart growth”. Citizens can disagree on how many houses we should build, what the rate of growth should be, whether environmental issues should be paramount or not, etc. Bottom line is Davisites see the cost of city services escalating at an alarming degree. The school district fallout is but one example of what can happen if there is poor fiscal management. Vallejo going bankrupt is but another example.

    Thus this election will be more about Measure J, the sphere of influence, peripheral development – because everybody knows residential housing ultimately costs the taxpayer big bucks because of the increased costs of city services that will be required for any new housing development. On top of that, I suspect citizens are beginning to be aware of the problem of developers promising schools that the school district does not have the money to operate.

    Growth and fiscal management are very inter-related. John Q. Public can see increases in taxes of all kinds, along with increases in water and sewer rates coming down the pike – and want to keep the financial impact of any new development to a manageable level!

  8. Ill Say It Again

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Measure J is not about no growth, but about “smart growth”. Citizens can disagree on how many houses we should build, what the rate of growth should be, whether environmental issues should be paramount or not, etc. Bottom line is Davisites see the cost of city services escalating at an alarming degree. The school district fallout is but one example of what can happen if there is poor fiscal management. Vallejo going bankrupt is but another example.

    Thus this election will be more about Measure J, the sphere of influence, peripheral development – because everybody knows residential housing ultimately costs the taxpayer big bucks because of the increased costs of city services that will be required for any new housing development. On top of that, I suspect citizens are beginning to be aware of the problem of developers promising schools that the school district does not have the money to operate.

    Growth and fiscal management are very inter-related. John Q. Public can see increases in taxes of all kinds, along with increases in water and sewer rates coming down the pike – and want to keep the financial impact of any new development to a manageable level!

  9. Rich Rifkin

    Although Davis people are naturally very interested in county policies with regard to our periphery — especially in light of all that happened last year — I think the deciding factor in choosing a supervisor ought to be picking someone who can best deal with the county’s current severe budget problems. Maybe the billionaires who own Cache Creek can help out?

    I don’t pay close enough attention to the county’s situation to know why it is in so much trouble right now*; however, I do know that counties in general often get squeezed between school districts and cities on one side and the state on the other. As such, every time there is an economic downturn, the counties are hurt the worst.

    As such, it’s possible that there is nothing our current supervisors could have done to prevent this crisis.

    Nevertheless, the next board will have to figure a way past this problem. That will take some doing.

    Inevitably, the poor and those who serve them are likely to be hurt the worst by the county’s budget cuts.

    * I am not sure, for example, if the county has let its retirement benefits grow to unsustainable levels. I have a family member who is a Yolo County retiree, and I know that her benefits are miserly compared with what City of Davis retirees are getting: puny pension; no free medical; no convalescent health coverage. It’s possible that since she retired (in 1989), county employees have received better benefits. I don’t know.

  10. Rich Rifkin

    Although Davis people are naturally very interested in county policies with regard to our periphery — especially in light of all that happened last year — I think the deciding factor in choosing a supervisor ought to be picking someone who can best deal with the county’s current severe budget problems. Maybe the billionaires who own Cache Creek can help out?

    I don’t pay close enough attention to the county’s situation to know why it is in so much trouble right now*; however, I do know that counties in general often get squeezed between school districts and cities on one side and the state on the other. As such, every time there is an economic downturn, the counties are hurt the worst.

    As such, it’s possible that there is nothing our current supervisors could have done to prevent this crisis.

    Nevertheless, the next board will have to figure a way past this problem. That will take some doing.

    Inevitably, the poor and those who serve them are likely to be hurt the worst by the county’s budget cuts.

    * I am not sure, for example, if the county has let its retirement benefits grow to unsustainable levels. I have a family member who is a Yolo County retiree, and I know that her benefits are miserly compared with what City of Davis retirees are getting: puny pension; no free medical; no convalescent health coverage. It’s possible that since she retired (in 1989), county employees have received better benefits. I don’t know.

  11. Rich Rifkin

    Although Davis people are naturally very interested in county policies with regard to our periphery — especially in light of all that happened last year — I think the deciding factor in choosing a supervisor ought to be picking someone who can best deal with the county’s current severe budget problems. Maybe the billionaires who own Cache Creek can help out?

    I don’t pay close enough attention to the county’s situation to know why it is in so much trouble right now*; however, I do know that counties in general often get squeezed between school districts and cities on one side and the state on the other. As such, every time there is an economic downturn, the counties are hurt the worst.

    As such, it’s possible that there is nothing our current supervisors could have done to prevent this crisis.

    Nevertheless, the next board will have to figure a way past this problem. That will take some doing.

    Inevitably, the poor and those who serve them are likely to be hurt the worst by the county’s budget cuts.

    * I am not sure, for example, if the county has let its retirement benefits grow to unsustainable levels. I have a family member who is a Yolo County retiree, and I know that her benefits are miserly compared with what City of Davis retirees are getting: puny pension; no free medical; no convalescent health coverage. It’s possible that since she retired (in 1989), county employees have received better benefits. I don’t know.

  12. Rich Rifkin

    Although Davis people are naturally very interested in county policies with regard to our periphery — especially in light of all that happened last year — I think the deciding factor in choosing a supervisor ought to be picking someone who can best deal with the county’s current severe budget problems. Maybe the billionaires who own Cache Creek can help out?

    I don’t pay close enough attention to the county’s situation to know why it is in so much trouble right now*; however, I do know that counties in general often get squeezed between school districts and cities on one side and the state on the other. As such, every time there is an economic downturn, the counties are hurt the worst.

    As such, it’s possible that there is nothing our current supervisors could have done to prevent this crisis.

    Nevertheless, the next board will have to figure a way past this problem. That will take some doing.

    Inevitably, the poor and those who serve them are likely to be hurt the worst by the county’s budget cuts.

    * I am not sure, for example, if the county has let its retirement benefits grow to unsustainable levels. I have a family member who is a Yolo County retiree, and I know that her benefits are miserly compared with what City of Davis retirees are getting: puny pension; no free medical; no convalescent health coverage. It’s possible that since she retired (in 1989), county employees have received better benefits. I don’t know.

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