UCD alumna Sydney Vergis runs for city council

Former UC Davis student Sydney Vergis announced her candidacy for Davis City Council on Feb. 14.

Vergis, who majored in economics and environmental policy analysis and
planning, has been involved with Davis services and programs since her
residency in 2001. She has served on the city’s Business and Economic
Development Commission (BEDC), the Davis City Tree Commission and the
Yolo County Young Democrats (YCYD).

Former UC Davis student Sydney Vergis announced her candidacy for Davis City Council on Feb. 14.

Vergis, who majored in economics and environmental policy analysis and planning, has been involved with Davis services and programs since her residency in 2001. She has served on the city’s Business and Economic Development Commission (BEDC), the Davis City Tree Commission and the Yolo County Young Democrats (YCYD).

As a senior land use planner for Sutter County, Vergis said she plans to use her knowledge and expertise to conserve and improve the environment.

I work with city and county general plans, city finances and boundary regulations and environmental impact reports, she said. I want to make Davis an even greater place to live.

If elected, Vergis said she will use her passion for the community to impact land use planning and municipal finances.

Our downtown core is a wonderful place for shopping, entertainment and community, she said. Limited bike parking and lack of loading areas are major concerns.

Sophomore biotechnology major and YCYD member Don Gibson said Vergis’ approach to addressing downtown congestion and limited bike parking is different compared to conventional campaign strategies.

As opposed to coffee talks, which is a common campaign strategy, Sydney and her supporters will bike around the Davis bike loop, stopping along the way to meet and discuss issues with community members, Gibson said. Sydney is a Davis kind of person, especially about her strong and smart ideas to keep Davis green.

For downtown and community businesses, Vergis plans to work on the city’s economic development strategic plan and outreach services to community businesses.

Though Vergis is relatively new to BEDC, she attends all meetings, said BEDC city staff liaison and economic development coordinator Sarah Worley. She asks thoughtful questions about the issues and contributes positively to the commission.

For the environment, Vergis encourages her Go Green Three Point Plan, which focuses city services on city facilities, alternative transportation and efficient energy usage.

This election must be about good green planning that not only saves taxpayer dollars but improves our living environment, Vergis said. It must be about our upcoming General Plan and Housing Element Update.

The Housing Element Update, which is the city planning document that sets policies and a framework by which all land use decisions are made, needs someone with professional planning experience on the City Council, said Vergis.

When asked why she is running, Vergis said she is inspired by community members and their community pride.

What I hear the most is how proud people are of our green successes, Vergis said. We have the Village Homes and bike lanes, but in the last 40 years, people are frustrated [that] we’re lagging behind in the environmentally friendly curve. I am a young professional – I represent Davis. I look forward to this campaign.

Vergis will be running with four declared candidates for the three available seats in City Council. Also running are Mayor Sue Greenwald, labor relations representative Cecilia Escamilla-Greenwald and councilmembers Don Saylor and Stephen Souza. The election is June 3.

SYLVIA CHAN can be reached at city@californiaaggie.com. XXX