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Executive Director’s Report – February 14, 2011

For the Meeting of February 14, 2011

1. Budget.

As previously reported, the Mayor has provided a budget target to all City departments, which have been asked to submit a savings equal to 10 percent of the department’s base General Fund support (or $213,023 for the Commission) and a 10 percent contingency cut.  The Commission will discuss staff’s proposed budget at the February meeting.

2. November 8, 2011 Election. 

Staff conducted a training on January 27, 2011 for candidates running for Mayor, District Attorney or Sheriff in November 2011.  As of February 8, 25 candidates for Mayor, four for District Attorney and two for Sheriff have filed an intention statement to run for office in the November 8, 2011 election. 

Candidates for Mayor who are interested in seeking public funding may submit an application for public funds beginning February 8.  In order to receive public funds, an interested candidate must demonstrate, among other things, that he/she has received at least $25,000 in qualifying contributions from at least 250 individuals who reside in the City. 

3. Investigation and enforcement program.

Since its last regular meeting on January 10, 2011, the Ethics Commission has received one new complaint.  There are 29 pending complaints alleging violations within the Ethics Commission’s jurisdiction.

Category # of Complaints
Campaign Finance 10
Conflict of Interest 5
Governmental Ethics 0
Lobbyist Ordinance 0
Campaign Consultant Ordinance 2
Sunshine Ordinance 12

4. Campaign finance disclosure program.

a. Filing deadline.  The most recent filing deadline occurred on January 31, 2011 for the Second Semi-Annual statement, which covers through the reporting period ending December 31, 2010.  Twenty committees are delinquent in filing the Second Semi Annual statement and will be sent a Non-Specific Written Notice.

The next filing deadline is August 1, 2011 for the First Semi-Annual statement, which covers the reporting period ending June 30, 2011. 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 10-11, as of January 31, the Commission collected a total of $31,017 in campaign finance late fees and forfeitures.  Outstanding late fees and forfeitures total $132,484, of which waiver requests are pending for $93,080; and $22,022 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 $6,595 $6,595
2 Barbara Lopez for School Board 1312265 Mika Cade 10/12/10 $350 $350 $350
3 Committee to Elect M. Valle for Treasurer 1278937 Manuel B. Valle 6/14/07 $5,525 $5,525 $5,525
4 Bill Barnes for District 5 1265969 Alix Rosenthal 1/3/08 $3,120 $1,547 $1,041
5 Care Not Cash 1244505 Ronald Jin 2/29/08 $5,331 $3,306 $2,731
6 Omar Khalif for Board of Educ. 1287030 Omar Khalif 7/30/09 $1,800 $1,775 $1,775
7 Myrna Lim for District 11 Sup 1306882 Myrna Lim 7/30/09 $1,180 $1,180 $1,180
8 Myrna Lim for District 11 Sup 1256697 Jia Jun Chen 8/20/07 $3,855 $2,775 $2,775
9 San Francisco Women’s Political Committee 1243711 Giselle Barry 5/16/06 $1,906 $50 $50
            TOTAL $22,022

5. Revenues report. 

For FY 10-11, the Commission is budgeted to generate $78,000 in revenues.  As of February 9, 2011, the Commission received and deposited $85,286 as summarized below.  The figure represents collection of approximately 109 percent of expected revenues for FY 10-11. 

Revenues received and deposited as of February 9, 2011:

Source Budgeted Amount FY 10-11 Receipts
Lobbyist Fees $8,000 $33,500
Other Ethics General $1,000  $292
Campaign Finance Fines $50,000  $33,368
Campaign Consultant Fees $15,000  $12,650
Lobbyist Fines $1,000 $2,050
Statements of Economic Interests Fines $1,000 $0
Other Ethics Fines $1,000  $1,076
Campaign Consultant Fines $1,000  $2,250
Total                        $78,000  $85,286

6. Draft regulations related to complaints regarding Sunshine Ordinance and referrals from the Sunshine Ordinance Task Force.

The Sunshine Ordinance Task Force (SOTF) has informed the Commission that its review of draft regulations related to the handling of complaints regarding alleged violations of the Sunshine Ordinance and referrals from the SOTF continues.  The SOTF anticipates that it will complete its work sometime this spring. 

7. Lobbyist program. 

As of February 7, 2011, 60 individual lobbyists were registered with the Commission.  In FY 10-11, total revenues collected to date are $35,550, which consists of $33,500 in lobbyist registration fees and $2,050 in fines.  The January 2011 reporting period deadline is February 15, 2011.

8. Campaign Consultant program. 

As of February 9, 2011, 23 campaign consultants are active and registered with the Commission.  $12,650 in registration fees and $2,250 in late fines have been collected during the 2010-2011 fiscal year.  The next campaign consultant quarterly report deadline is Tuesday, March 15, 2011.  Staff will mail and e-mail reminder notices to all active campaign consultants two weeks before the deadline. 

The Commission is scheduled to continue its discussion of proposed amendments to the Campaign Consultant Ordinance at its January meeting.

9. Statement of Economic Interests program.

On February 7, 2011, staff sent notification to filing officers to notify filers of filing deadlines for the FPPC Form 700, Sunshine Ordinance Declaration, and the Certificate of Ethics Training.

The Ethics Commission has rescheduled the Filing Officer SEI Training to February 15.  Additional one-on-one trainings will be facilitated on an as needed basis.

10. Outreach and Education.

On January 26, 28, and 31, staff facilitated nine one-on-one e-filing trainings for committee treasurers and candidates.

On February 1 and 3, staff facilitated four one-on-one Filing Officer SEI Trainings.

Staff continued to engage the FPPC Chairman’s Task Force on the Political Reform Act on a variety of its reform proposals, including making the electronic filing the document of record for campaign finance filings.  This resulted in a recommendation from the Task Force to the FPPC to this effect.  The Task Force proposals in their entirety were presented to the FPPC on January 28, 2011. 

The Commission continues to offer trainings on Statements of Incompatible Activities to City departments.  Currently scheduled trainings will be the SIA training for the Medical Examiner’s Office, Commission on the Status of Women, and the Public Utilities Commission.

The following are the currently scheduled trainings for 2011:

Candidates’ Training:  January 27, April 12, June 23, and August 9
Filing Officer SEI Training:  February 15
Non-Candidate Recipient Committee Training:  web training available online
Ethics and SIA Training for the Commission on the Status of Women:  February 23
SIA Training for the Department of Building Inspection:  web training available online
SIA Training for the Medical Examiner’s Office:  March 3 and May 5
SIA Training for the Public Utilities Commission:  web training requested

Respectfully submitted,

John St. Croix
Executive Director    
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