Date: December 10, 2012
To: General Purpose Committees
Candidates, Primarily Formed Candidate and Ballot Measure Committees
From: John St. Croix, Executive Director
Re: San Francisco Electronic Filing System Upgrade
Please review this memorandum carefully. It contains important information about your campaign disclosure filing obligations. If you have questions on any of the items discussed below, please call our office at 415-252-3100 during normal business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
1. Enhancements to the San Francisco Electronic Disclosure System (SFEDS)
The Ethics Commission is pleased to announce an upgrade to the SFEDS (Netfile), which will be available as of Monday, December 10, 2012. The new version of the system incorporates much of the feedback that the Commission has received regarding the current SFEDS system.
Highlights of the new system include:
- Single Sign-on for treasurers with multiple committees;
- Streamlined data entry and faster data access, particularly for Form 460 Schedules D and G;
- Ability to edit previously entered bills, payments, and loans;
- Advanced transaction filtering;
- Ability to change cover-page information;
- Ability to add document notes to be attached to a statement;
- Page help for every form;
- Ability to add committee officers and assign signatory permissions; and
- Easier statement amendment process.
2. Account conversion
The new system includes a more secure user access process that involves creating a new user account that links to your existing committee filer account. If you have multiple committee filer accounts, the new user account will act as a gateway to access all of your accounts.
You must create a user account to continue using the system for data-entry. To create the user account and gain access to all of your committee accounts, please read the attached “Netfile User Access Process” document and carefully follow the instructions.
Please create the user account as soon as possible. Do not wait until the next filing deadline to create the user account. If you need assistance, please contact the Commission at 415-252-3100 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Committees that use third-party filing software that submit filings in .CAL 2.01 format should follow the links to upload .CAL documents from the login page of the new SFEDS system. Committee treasurers that use third-party filing software and do not use the SFEDS system for data-entry for any committee do not need to create a new user account.
3. Familiarize yourself with the system
Attached, please find the Netfile Campaign Disclosure System Quick Start Guide. You should also download the complete Netfile Campaign Disclosure System E-Filer Users Guide linked from this notice on the Commission’s web site.
You are strongly encouraged to review these documents to familiarize yourself with the new system. Should you require assistance with the system, please contact the Commission at 415-252-3100 or by e-mail at email@example.com. Staff is available to help you adjust to the new system.
In addition, you may request to meet with Commission staff for individual training. If you are interested in taking advantage of this opportunity, please contact the Commission to set up an appointment. Bring all relevant committee records with you to the training session so that the staff can best provide you with assistance.
4. Data import
All of the transactions stored in the current SFEDS system have been imported into the new SFEDS system. Due to the large volume of transactions in many committee accounts, you are encouraged to confirm that all of your transactions are accurately imported into the new system.
All committees that filed Form 460 using the current SFEDS system should generate a new draft statement in the new system that matches the filing period of the last statement submitted to the Ethics Commission.
For example, if the last statement that you submitted for your committee covered the period October 1, 2012 through October 20, 2012, then create a new Form 460 draft in the new SFEDS system to match the same period. Confirm that the Summary Page (Pg. 3) totals in Column A and Column B on the draft statement match the totals on the same page of the last Form 460 that you submitted to the Commission. Should you find any discrepancies, please contact the Commission before proceeding with entering new transactions into your account. Staff is available to assist you with this review.
To create a new Form 460 draft statement, follow these instructions:
- Login to the new SFEDS system;
- Choose “Create a New Form Draft 460” from the “Statements” menu;
- Enter the “Start Date” that matches the “Start Date” on your last Form 460 submitted to the Commission;
- Enter the “End Date” that matches the “End Date” on your last Form 460 submitted to the Commission;
- Choose the “Statement Type” that matches the “Statement Type” on your last Form 460 submitted to the Commission;
- Enter the “Election Date” if applicable;
- Check “Show Election Cumulatives” if your last Form 460 submitted to the Commission includes election cumulative next to itemized transactions;
- Choose a “Sort Transactions by” option;
- Choose a “Signatory” from the “First Signer” box and enter the date and title;
- Click “Create Draft Form 460”;
- Wait for the document to generate;
- Click the “View” button next to the draft statement in the “Draft Statements” table;
- Download the “FPPC460” ZIP file and open the compressed file;
- Open the “FPPC 460 Complete” document in a PDF viewer;
- Compare the “Summary Page” (Pg. 3) with the “Summary Page” of the Form 460 that you submitted to the Commission.
5. Semi-annual deadline
The next filing deadline for all committees is January 31, 2013, covering the period between: either (a) the day after the closing date of the previous statement filed through December 31, 2012; or (b) if no statement was filed in 2012, January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012.
Please set up your new user account early and familiarize yourself with the new system. Review the attached documents, download the Users Guide, and seek assistance from Commission staff if you need additional training.