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Executive Director’s Report – July 12, 2010


For the Meeting of July 12, 2010

1. Budget. 

The final budget number for the Ethics Commission for FY 2010/11 is $4,177,819.  This is a combination of $2,201,325 for the operating budget and $1,976,494 for the Election Campaign Fund.  The final operating budget is $45,505 less than the previous fiscal year.  Please note, the figure reported last month was $38,411.  However, all departments were required to make additional across-the-board cuts, which totaled an additional $7,094 for the Ethics Commission.  Final adoption of the budget is expected by the end of this month.

2. Investigation and enforcement program.

Since its last regular meeting on June 14, 2010 the Commission has received zero new complaints.  There are currently 18 complaints in the Commission’s jurisdiction.

Category # of Complaints
Campaign Finance 5
Conflict of Interest 6
Governmental Ethics 0
Lobbyist Ordinance 0
Campaign Consultant Ordinance 0
Sunshine Ordinance 7

3. Campaign finance disclosure program.

a. Filing deadline.  The most recent filing deadline occurred on May 27 for the Second Pre-Election statement, which covers through the reporting period ending May 22, 2010.  Four candidates/committees are delinquent in filing the Second Pre-Election statement. Staff contacted these candidates/committees by phone in addition to sending them a Non-Specific Written Notice.  As of July 6, two candidates still have not filed their required statements.

The next filing deadline is August 2, 2010 for the First Semi Annual statement, which covers through the reporting period ending June 30.  Staff continues to answer questions from and conduct outreach to candidates and other committee representatives about campaign finance filing obligations.

b. Collection of late filing fees and contribution forfeitures.  In the FY 09-10, the Commission collected a total of $78,252 in campaign finance late fees and forfeitures.  As of June 30, outstanding late fees and forfeitures total $179,733.  Of the $179,733 in outstanding late fees and forfeitures, waiver requests are pending for $92,886, and $32,053 is pending at the Bureau of Delinquent Revenues.   

c. Status of accounts to San Francisco Bureau of Delinquent Revenues (BDR).  The following chart provides details on pending accounts referred to BDR:

# Committee/
ID # Treasurer or Responsible Officer Date referral effective Original amount referred Last month’s balance Current balance (Changes are in bold)
1 Johnnie Carter for Community College Board 1226264 Johnnie Carter 6/16/06 $9,520.00 $6,595.00 $6,595.00
2 Micheas Herman PEN788 Micheas Herman 6/26/06 $100.00 $100.00 $100.00
3 San Franciscans for Fair & Honest Government 1258209 Erik Howell 10/20/06 $4,659.22 $4,659.22 $4,659.22
4 Myrna Viray Lim for District 11 Supervisor 1256697 Jia Jun Chen 4/27/07 $3,855.00 $3,855.00 $3,855.00
5 Committee to Elect M. Valle for Treasurer 1278937 Manuel B. Valle 6/14/07 $5,525.00 $5,525.00 $5,525.00
6 Committee to Elect Vilma Guinto-Peoro Supervisor District #2 1291394 Vilma Guinto-Peoro 6/18/07 $10.00 $10.00 $10.00
7 Bill Barnes for District 5 1265969 Alix Rosenthal 1/3/08 $3,120 $2.647.85 $2,447.85
8 Care Not Cash 1244505 Ronald Jin 2/29/08 $5,331 $4,806 $4,506.00
9 Omar Khalif for Board of Educ. 1287030 Omar Khalif 7/30/09 $1,800 $1,800 $1,800
10 Myrna Lim for District 11 Sup 1306882 Myrna Lim 7/30/09 $1,180 $1,180 $1,180
11 Gregory Stephens PEN196 Gregory Stephens 3/31/05 $420 $420 $420
12 San Francisco Women’s Political Committee 1243711 Giselle Barry 5/16/06 $1,906 $50 $50
13 San Francisco Women’s Political Committee 1243711 Giselle Barry 8/24/07 $905 $905 $905
TOTAL $32,053.07

4. Revenues report. 

For FY 10-11, the Commission is budgeted to generate $78,000 in revenues.  As of July
6, 2010, the Commission received $1,977 as summarized below.  The figure represents collection of approximately 2.5 percent of expected revenues for FY 10-11. 

Revenues Received as of July 6, 2010:

Source Budgeted Amount FY 10-11 Receipts
Lobbyist Fees $8,000
Other Ethics General $1,000 $2
Campaign Finance Fines $50,000 $1,975
Campaign Consultant Fees $15,000
Lobbyist Fines $1,000
Statements of Economic Interests Fines $1,000
Other Ethics Fines $1,000
Campaign Consultant Fines $1,000
Total $78,000 $1,977

5. Public financing/Campaign finance audit program.

As of July 8, 2010, 13 candidates for the Board of Supervisors have been certified as eligible to receive public funds. The Commission disbursed a total of $458,453 in public funds to the 13 eligible candidates. Two candidates’ applications for public funding are currently under review.
The Ethics Commission has recently implemented a new system to disburse additional public funds to candidates who are certified to receive public financing. The Ethics Commission is requesting that certified candidates submit the form “Statement by Candidate Regarding His/Her Trust Account Limit”.   The main purpose of this form is to make sure that the Ethics Commission disburses public funds without causing a candidate to exceed his or her Trust Account Limit (TAL).   Staff is providing guidance to candidates regarding this new filing requirement. The next training for candidates is on July 15, 2010.

6. Lobbyist program. 

As of July 1, 2010, 42 individual lobbyists were registered with the Commission.  In the FY 09-10, $23,662 in lobbyist fees and $400 in fines have been collected, for a total of $24,062. 

The June 2010 reporting deadline is July 15, 2010.

7. Campaign Consultant program. 

As of July 7, 2010, twenty-nine campaign consultants are active and registered with the Commission.  $16,200 in registration fees and $1,750 in late fines were collected in the 2009-2010 fiscal year.  The next quarterly report is due Wednesday, September 15, 2010.  Staff will mail reminder notices to all active campaign consultants two weeks before the deadline.

8. Outreach and Education.

On June 15, 2010, staff provided a training on the filing of Statements of Economic Interests to the 2010-2011 Civil Grand Jury. 

On June 22, 2010, staff provided a training on the Governmental Ethics Ordinance and the Ethics Commission’s Statement of Incompatible Activities. 

The Commission continues to offer trainings on Statements of Incompatible Activities to City departments. 

The following are the currently scheduled in-person trainings for 2010:
Candidates’ Training:  July 15 and August 19
GSA Medical Examiner’s Office SIA Training:  August 5
Understanding Expenditure Ceilings:  September 21

Respectfully submitted,

John St. Croix
Executive Director      

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