Chamber PAC Endorses: Davis, Parrella, and Swanson


ChamberPACLate on Sunday night, the Davis Chamber of Commerce’s Political Action Committee announced its endorsements for the 2014 Davis City Council election.  While there are two seats open in this election, the Davis Chamber PAC supported three candidates: Robb Davis, Daniel Parrella, and Rochelle Swanson.  This comes on the heels of the Sierra Club’s endorsement of Robb Davis and Rochelle Swanson.

The Chamber also came out against Measure P, the repeal of the water rate initiative, but apparently took no position on Measure O.

(The following is the Chamber’s Press Release).

Davis, Parrella & Swanson supported by business community.

The Davis Chamber of Commerce Political Action Committee believes it is imperative that the Davis community has political leadership capable of fostering a community that is not only socially and environmentally sustainable, but also economically sustainable. Our community deserves elected officials and government staff who are willing and able to constructively work with community organizations and private industry to find solutions for current and future community challenges.

Several months ago the Davis ChamberPAC shared our thoughts with the community regarding the desired City Council candidate attributes that we believe will help keep the Council focused on our pressing fiscal challenges. The attributes we are seeking in candidates are:

  • Leadership
  • Focus
  • Transparency
  • Professional temperament & rational judgment
  • Independence & absence of future political aspirations

The ChamberPAC interviewed all five City Council candidates and hosted a lively candidate debate several weeks ago. Based on ChamberPAC interviews, the debate and a review of voting records and public comments, the ChamberPAC has determined that three candidates exhibit the desired attributes necessary to fill the two open seats for the June 3, 2014 Davis City Council election:

Robb Davis   | Daniel Parrella   |   Rochelle Swanson

We are confident that each of these 3 candidates will focus on economic development efforts to improve the quality of life in our community, create more high-paying jobs, further cut city expenses and make difficult decisions to get us out of our current city budget crisis, as well as exercising sound judgment in hiring a highly qualified professional leader to become our next city manager.

While we commend John Munn and Sheila Allen for their willingness to continue their public service careers, we ultimately decided that they were not the right candidates to lead our community toward the three legs of sustainability during the next four years.

The ChamberPAC also encourages Davis voters to Vote No on Measure P, the effort to overturn the citizen-approved water rates that provides the funding for our voter-approved surface water project currently under construction.

ChamberPAC fundraising efforts continue to successfully raise donations from numerous businesses and individuals. Donations to support these efforts can be mailed to 604 Third Street, Davis, CA 95616. Business and individual donations, per internally created guidelines, must not exceed $2,500 per election cycle.

The sole funding source for the Davis ChamberPAC is voluntary contributions by individuals and businesses. No funds from the operating budget of the Davis Chamber of Commerce are used to support Davis Chamber PAC activities. Davis ChamberPAC endorsements are NOT voted on by the Board of Directors of the Davis Chamber of Commerce.

The Davis Chamber of Commerce and Davis ChamberPAC are not affiliated with the US Chamber of Commerce or the California Chamber of Commerce.


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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4 thoughts on “Chamber PAC Endorses: Davis, Parrella, and Swanson”

  1. Tia Will

    “The Davis Chamber of Commerce Political Action Committee believes it is imperative that the Davis community has political leadership capable of fostering a community that is not only socially and environmentally sustainable, but also economically sustainable”

    I am in complete agreement with this statement from the PAC acknowledging the importance of all elements of well being of the community, social, environmental, and economic. These three are not separable and to choose to focus on one to the exclusion of the others is a serious mistake.

  2. Rich RifkinWDE 73

    I’m curious to know why, in a race where voters cannot vote for three candidates and only two seats are to be won, the Chamber decided to endorse three people and not two?

    When, some years back, the local Democratic Party, endorsed more candidates than seats available–if I recall correctly, they endorsed four for the three seats–I thought it was weak. I thought they should have, if they were going to endorse, dug deeper and come up with a reason why one of those was not as qualified in their view as the other three. I also recall that the Vanguard covered this issue, and David Greenwald (please correct me if I have this wrong) wrote that endorsing four in that race was a tad spineless.

    Yet, I should say I don’t feel so bad about what the Chamber has done, here. At the very least, it seems like they have matured over the last 2 years. In 2012, none of their endorsements made any sense, in terms of the “fiscal responsibility” they claimed to favor. Their endorsements seemed then to be all about personalities–who Pope and Bisch liked or did not like. This time, their three picks seem to be in line with their point of view on city policies.

    Still, I feel like it makes more sense, if you are going to endorse three for two seats, to rank your preferences and explain them. Not all of these three people are the same on all issues. Maybe one issue is more important than another. One candidate (Rochelle) has four years of experience on the Council, co-owns businesses in Davis and was involved with the schools. Another (Robb) has been a commissioner and has been active in other ways for years in city government and other public policy questions. And the third (Daniel), who, for all I know is the person whose ideas the PAC likes best, has no experience in city governance and is half the age of the others. If experience does not matter, then that would not be a deciding factor. But I think the Chamber should say that to help voters who care about their endorsements know where the PAC is coming from.

    1. Davis Progressive

      it seems like the chamber was saying these are the three acceptable candidates, the other two are not.

      its interesting to see how far sheila allen has fallen, i assume firefighters and employee compensation are at the root here. munn’s campaign has really lacked what i would have thought a republican would emphasize – support for business and has focused on his anti-tax, anti-water views.

      finally, what does it say that the chamber could not support measure o? that boggles the imagination.

      1. Rich RifkinWDE 73

        “It’s interesting to see how far sheila allen has fallen.”

        AFAIK, no reliable polls of the voters have been taken, and, of course, the vote which counts will not be cast for more than a month. So I question whether Sheila really has fallen. I think it’s possible that she has, but not certain.

        Most voters, I think, base their votes on trust, and trust in a city council election is mainly about who you know and what your friends tell you. The actual positions of candidates are probably less important to the large percentage of voters who don’t pay attention. As a result, most candidates who start out as the most well known by the most people in Davis will end up winners. Sheila and Rochelle, I think, started this campaign with the most name recognition and thus the largest bases of support.

        So the question with Sheila is whether the volleyball scandal turned some of her good name recognition into bad. I tend to doubt that it has. And insofar as her (seemingly) being the favored candidate of the city unions, I cannot imagine that anyone who previously supported Sheila will change his vote over that. But maybe I am underestimating the people of Davis, this time.

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