A behested payment is a payment made at the request of a government official to a third party. Behested payments are made principally for legislative, governmental, or charitable purposes, rather than for personal or campaign purposes. Generally, a payment is made at the behest of an officer if it is requested, solicited, or suggested by the officer or their agent, or otherwise made to a third party in cooperation, consultation, coordination with, or with the consent of, the officer. If a behested payment is made by an “interested party” at an officer’s behest, that officer may be required to file one or more public disclosures regarding the payment.
Exception: A payment is not made at the behest of an officer if the officer requested the payment via television, radio, billboard, a public message on an online platform, the distribution of 200 or more identical pieces of printed material, the distribution of a single email to 200 or more recipients, or a speech to a group of 20 or more individuals.
San Francisco law requires City elected officials and appointed members of boards and commissions to disclose behested payments on Form SFEC-3610(b).
Effective September 24, 2020, Mayoral Executive Directive 20-02 directed Department Heads to comply with the City’s behested payment requirements that apply to City elected officials and members of boards and commissions that are contained in Article III, Chapter 6 of the Campaign and Governmental Conduct Code. This includes the filing of behested payment Form SFEC-3610(b).
Please note: Pursuant to C&GCC Section 3.610(e), if an elected official, commissioner or board member solicits or otherwise requests, in any manner other than a public appeal, that any person make a behested payment, the officer or his agent must notify that person that if the person makes any behested payment in response to the solicitation or request, the person may be subject to the disclosure and notice requirements in Section 3.620.
“At the behest of” means under the control or at the direction of, in cooperation, consultation, coordination, or concert with, at the request or suggestion of, or with the express, prior consent of. However, a payment is not made at the behest of a public official if the official requested the payment via television, radio, billboard, a public message on an online platform, the distribution of 200 or more identical pieces of printed material, the distribution of a single email to 200 or more recipients, or a speech to a group of 20 or more individuals.
An “interested party” is a person who is a party, participant or agent of a party or participant to certain types of proceedings before the official in question. Those proceedings are limited to administrative enforcement proceedings and proceedings regarding permits, licenses, or other entitlements for use. A party to such a proceeding is someone who files an application for a license, permit, or entitlement for use or is the subject of the administrative enforcement. A participant in such a proceeding is someone who is not a party to the proceeding but who actively supports or opposes a particular decision in the proceeding and has a financial interest in the decision. An agent is someone who represents a party or a participant in such a proceeding.
A “payment” is a monetary payment or delivery of goods or services.
Filings by City Officers
Who must file
City law requires filings by the Mayor, City Attorney, District Attorney, Treasurer, Sheriff, Assessor-Recorder, Public Defender, a Member of the Board of Supervisors, or any member of a board or commission who is required to file a Statement of Economic Interests, including all persons holding positions listed in Section 3.1-103(a)(1) of the Campaign and Governmental Conduct Code.
Effective September 24, 2020, Mayoral Executive Directive 20-02 requires Department Heads to file behested payment Form SFEC-3610(b) and to comply with the City’s behested payment requirements that apply to City elected officials and members of boards and commissions that are contained in Article III, Chapter 6 of the Campaign and Governmental Conduct Code.
When to file
An officer must file Form SFEC-3610(b) within 30 days following the date on which the payment(s) from a single source meets or exceeds $1,000 in the aggregate in a calendar year. Once a single source has made a behested payment of $5,000 or more during the calendar year, subsequent payments of any amount from that source must be reported.
The filing deadline for Form SFEC-3610(b) depends on the circumstances under which the behested payment was made.
If the behested payment was made while the proceeding involving the interested party is pending before the officer, then the form must be filed within thirty days of the payment being made. If there is a series of behested payments, the form is due within 30 days of the payment that makes the total $1,000 or more.
If the behested payment was made within six months following the date on which a final decision was made in the proceeding involving the interested party, then the form must be filed within thirty days of the payment. If there is a series of behested payments, the form is due within 30 days of the payment that makes the total $1,000 or more.
If the behested payment was made in the 12 months prior to the commencement of the proceeding involving the interested party, the form is due within 30 days of the date the officer knew or should have known that the source of the behested payment became an interested party.
Finally, within 30 days if any subsequent payments (in any amount) after the $1,000 threshold has been reached by an interested party in the same calendar year.
How to File
To file Form SFEC-3610(b), you must use the electronic form located at the bottom of this webpage. If you run out of space on the form and are unable to include all of the information that you are required to disclose, you must file a supplemental form that includes the remaining information. Be sure to include the same identifying information on the supplemental form as in the original to allow the Ethics Commission to connect the two forms.
Please note that you may be required to upload copies of communications as part of filing Form SFEC-3610(b). You will be required to do so if the recipient of the behested payment that you are reporting has distributed two-hundred or more similar communications featuring you within six months prior to the due date of the form. You will also be required to submit copies of such communications that are distributed within six months following the due date of the form. In this case, you will need to submit the form again using the same process as the original; but, you must indicate that the filing type is “Amended” and you must use the original filing date as the date on the amended form.
Filing an Amendment
To amend a previously filed Form, you will initiate a new Form through the same online portal that you initiated the original filing. You will need to complete all sections of the form as you did prior, except with the correct information, and in the first portion of the form (Section #1 Filing Information), complete as follows:
- Under Type of Filing, you will select “Amendment” from the drop down menu;
- under Date of Original Filing, enter the date of the original filing that you are amending;
- in the next field Amendment Description, enter the reason for the amendment.
Click the image below to preview a form illustrating the information required to be disclosed. (Please note that this form is for viewing purposes only and that the electronic link shown below must be used to file the required information.)
Additional Filings by Elected Officials
Separate and apart from behested payment disclosures required under San Francisco law, California law requires elected officials to report behested payments from one person or organization to be given to another individual or organization of $5,000 or more on the FPPC Form 803. Members of boards and commissions do not need to file the Form 803. Please note that elected officials must report all behested payments of $5,000 or more on Form 803, regardless of whether the person making the payment is an interested party.
FPPC Form 803 should be filed with the elected official’s agency. Elected officials should not file the form directly with the Ethics Commission. Within 30 days of receipt of the Form 803, the elected official’s agency must forward a copy of the report to the Ethics Commission. This form is currently filed in paper form.
See Fact Sheet, Understanding “Behested Payments” Reporting Requirements.