Ethics Commission
City and County of San Francisco

Courtesy Notice Re: August 1, 2016 First Semi-Annual Filing Deadline and Disclosure Requirements

Date: July 28, 2016

To: Recipient committees (Including Candidates and Officeholders)
Candidates for the November 8, 2016 election who do not have a committee
Major donor and independent expenditure committees

From: Jarrod Flores, Campaign Finance Officer

Re: August 1, 2016 First Semi-Annual Filing Deadline and Disclosure Requirements


The San Francisco Ethics Commission wants to take this opportunity to provide you with the following reminders about the August 1, 2016 First Semi-Annual filing deadline and updates to disclosure requirements.

Required Filers.  The following filers must submit the following Semi Annual disclosure statements with the Ethics Commission by August 1:

  • Non-candidate recipient committees:  FPPC Form 460
  • Candidate/Officeholder committees:  FPPC Form 460
  • Officeholders without committees must file either:
    • FPPC Form 470 Short Form if the officeholder does not plan on raising or spending more than $2,000 in a calendar year; or
    • FPPC Form 460 if the officeholder DOES plan on raising or spending more than $2,000 in a calendar year.
  • Candidates for the November election who filed a Form 501 Candidate Intention Statement by June 30, 2016 and who DO NOT plan on raising or spending more than $2,000 in a calendar year:  FPPC Form 470 Short Form
  • Candidates for the November election who filed a Form 501 Candidate Intention Statement by June 30, 2016 and DO plan on raising or spending more than $2,000 in a calendar year: FPPC Form 460.
  • Major Donor and Independent Expenditure committees:  FPPC Form 461

The Semi-Annual statement is required even if there was no activity.  When a candidate or officeholder controls more than one committee for offices within the same jurisdiction, all committees of that candidate or officeholder must file statements each time any committee statement is due.  When an elected officeholder in one jurisdiction runs for an office in another jurisdiction, the officeholder and all committees that he or she controls must file statements in both jurisdictions (see Cal. Code Regulations §18405).

Period covered.  Please remember the August Semi-Annual statement covers the period between:

  1. the day after the closing date of the previous statement filed, through June 30, 2016;
    or
  2. if no statement was filed in 2016, the period covered is January 1, 2016 through June 30, 2016.

Updates to disclosure requirements: Please read the following changes to disclosure requirements.

SmartPDF will no longer be used to electronically file SFEC 161 Mass Mailing Form.The Ethics Commission has ceased using SmartPDF for the electronic filing of SFEC 161 Mass Mailing Form.  SFEC Form 161 is required to be filed by candidates for City Elective office who pay for mass mailings. You may comply with this requirement by submitting a completed SFEC 161 Form and a legible PDF copy of the mailer via email to ethics.commission@sfgov.org. PDF proofs of the mass mailing piece are preferred. An interactive PDF of the form is available on the Commission’s website at www.sfethics.com. You may also submit hardcopies of the form and mass mailing pieces in person or by mail to:

San Francisco Ethics Commission
25 Van Ness Ave., Suite 220
San Francisco, CA 94102

NEW: Change in Independent Expenditure Reporting Requirement.  Effective January 1, 2016, FPPC Form 465 is required to be filed by a general purpose recipient or independent expenditure committee only if it has made independent expenditures of $1,000 or more supporting or opposing a measure during a signature gathering period (see S.F. C&GC Code § 1.135).

NEW:  Updated Disclaimer Charts.  Disclaimer requirements (i.e., “Paid for by” rules) for all City campaigns were updated in October 2015 to supplement state law requirements. The Ethics Commission has produced a number of Disclaimer Charts that explain how to comply with the new rules. To view these charts please use the following link:
https://www.sfethics.org/ethics/2015/07/announcement-of-important-changes-to-san-franciscos-campaign-finance-ordinance-now-in-effect.html

Avoid Late Filing Penalties.  Please remember that late filings are subject to a $10-per day late fee for paper reports, and a $25-per day late fee for electronic reports. Filing all statements by the required deadline ensures timely transparency to the public about your committee’s activities, and avoids late filing penalties that cost your committee both time and money.

We appreciate your attention to these important public disclosure requirements. If you have any questions or require further assistance with your filing obligations, please feel free to contact our office for further assistance. We can be reached from 8am to 5pm at (415) 252-3100.

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