Ethics Commission
City and County of San Francisco

Major Developers – Forms and Manuals

 

Effective July 26, 2014, City law impose reporting requirements on developers of certain City real estate projects with an estimated construction cost of more than $1,000,000.  Developers must file five forms with the Ethics Commission over the course of about a year disclosing donations to nonprofit organizations that have contacted City officials about their project.  The first form is due within 30 days of certification of an Environmental Impact Report (“EIR”) by a local agency or, if the project relies on a program EIR, within 30 days of the adoption of a final environmental determination under the California Environmental Quality Act.  Disclosure is not required for a residential development project with four or fewer dwelling units. 

Who is Required to File

A disclosure report must be completed and filed by the developer of any “major project.” A major project is a real estate development project located in the City and County of San Francisco with estimated construction costs exceeding $1,000,000 where either:

  1. The Planning Commission or any other local lead agency certifies an Environmental Impact Review (“EIR”) for the project under the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”); or  
  2. The project relies on a program EIR and the Planning Department, Planning Commission, or any other local lead agency adopts any final environmental determination under CEQA.  (See below to determine when a final environmental determination is adopted.)

A major project does not include a residential development project with four or fewer dwelling units.

For purposes of this filing requirement, a “developer” includes the individual or entity that is the project sponsor responsible for filing a completed Environmental Evaluation Application (“EEA”) with the Planning Department (or other lead agency) under CEQA.  However, if an individual who signs and submits the EEA will not be responsible for obtaining the entitlements or developing the major project, the developer is instead the individual or entity that is responsible for obtaining such entitlements.

What Reports Must be Filed and When

A developer must use the form below to file a total of five reports with the Ethics Commission with respect to each major project.  The first (or initial) report must be filed within 30 days of the date the Planning Commission or any other local lead agency certifies the EIR for that project or, for a major project relying on a program EIR, within 30 days of the date that the Planning Department, Planning Commission, or any other local lead agency adopts a final environmental determination under CEQA.1

The developer must also use this form to file four subsequent quarterly reports, beginning with the quarter in which in the initial report is filed.  The due dates for the quarterly reports are:

  1. April 15 for the period starting January 1 and ending March 31;
  2. July 15 for the period starting April 1 and ending June 30;
  3. October 15 for the period starting July 1 and ending September 30; and
  4. January 15 for the period starting October 1 and ending December 31.

Disclosure Report

Form Name Form # Location / File Type
Disclosure Report for Developers of Major City Projects
File an original signed document with the Ethics Commission.
Adobe Reader XI or later is required to use the interactive page buttons on the form.
SFEC 3500 PDF

How to File

A developer may file the report with the Ethics Commission by uploading a PDF copy of the signed report. A developer filing in this manner should retain the original signed copies for at least five years. The Ethics Commission will also accept paper copies of the report delivered in person or via U.S. mail. Copies submitted via U.S. mail must be postmarked by the applicable due date.

Form Instructions

Describing the Type of Report and Period Covered

Check the boxes on the report to indicate the type of report that is being filed and that applicable period covered.  Note that the first report will always cover the period from one year prior to the filing of the EEA to the present.  The reporting period for subsequent reports will depend on the quarter covered. 

Describing the Developer and the Major Project (Parts I & II)

In Part I, you must enter the developer’s name, business address, business e-mail address, and business telephone number. In Part II, you must enter the Planning Department case number and a description of the major project, as well as the date the EIR was certified or (if relying on a plan EIR) the date the final environmental determination was adopted.

What Nonprofit Donations Must be Reported (Part III)

You must enter the name, business address, business e-mail address, business telephone number, and website address of any nonprofit organization (including charities, social welfare organizations, trade associations, etc.):

  1. To which the developer and/or its “affiliates”(see Part IV) have made donations during the reporting period which, when considered with all other donations to the nonprofit since one year prior to the filing of the major project’s EEA, cumulatively total $5,000 or more; and
  2. Which has had one or more contacts with an officer of the City and County, or has provided public comment at any hearing before any board or commission of the City and County, in order to influence the City officer with regard to the developer’s major project. 

You must also enter the amounts and dates of the donations.  Please note that you must also check where indicated in Part III if any donations were disclosed on any prior report you filed with respect to the same major project.

What “Affiliates” of the Developer Must be Reported (Part IV)

You must enter the  name, business address, business e-mail address and business telephone number of any affiliate making donations reported in Section III.  An “affiliate” is any individual or entity that directly or indirectly controls, is controlled by or is under common control with, the developer.  In this regard, the term “control” means the power to direct the affairs or management of another entity, whether by contract, operation of law or otherwise. 


1 A final environmental determination includes: the issuance of a Community Plan Exemption (CPE); certification of a CPE/EIR; adoption of a CPE/Final Mitigated Negative Declaration; or a project approval by the Planning Commission that adopts CEQA Findings.  In instances where more than one of the preceding determinations occur, the filing requirement shall be triggered by the earliest such determination.

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