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Executive Director’s Report – December 13, 2017

Date: December 13, 2017
To: Members of the Ethics Commission
From: LeeAnn Pelham, Executive Director
Subject: AGENDA ITEM 9 – Executive Director’s Report for the December 18, 2017 Commission Meeting


This report provides various programmatic and operational highlights to date since the last monthly Executive Director’s Report.

Action Requested

No action is required by the Commission, as this item is for informational purposes only.

Organizational Updates

This year’s annual conference of the Council on Governmental Ethics Laws (COGEL), was held in Toronto, Canada December 3-6 and was attended by over 400 registrants. Each year, the conference provides the opportunity for peer agencies to share experiences and ideas, deepen understanding of issues and leading practices, and gain insights from thought leaders in both Canada and the United States. This year’s keynotes focused on a theme of speaking truth to power and included presentations by both the Canadian Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, Mary Dawson, and Former Director of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub. Additional plenary speakers included Steve Orsini, Ontario’s Secretary of the Cabinet and Head of the Ontario Public Service, who addressed creating a modern public service, and Dr. Denise O’Neil Green, the Vice-President of Equity and Community Inclusion at Ryerson University, who spoke on building stronger organizations through diverse perspectives.

Also a part of this year’s program lineup were Deputy Director and Director of Enforcement, Jessica Blome, who co-led the annual Local Agencies Roundtable, and Senior Policy Analyst Kyle Kundert, who participated in a panel discussion on Not-So-Hidden Agendas: How Elected Officials Use Outside Groups to Promote Their Agendas. Chief Programs Officer Gayathri Thaikkendiyil tracked several outreach and training sessions, including an interactive session on “Shiny New Innovations and Training,” and I presented at a panel on “Great Expectations: Measuring Your Agency’s Success.”

COGEL will hold its 40th annual conference in Philadelphia from December 9-12, 2018.

Gayathri Thaikkendiyil and I participated in a workshop held locally in Walnut Creek by the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) during the week of December 11. IAP2 offers intensive, hands-on training throughout the U.S. and Canada to support public agencies in developing and implementing effective public engagement practices to strengthen meaningful participation in complex public policy matters. Participation in this week’s session provided valuable insights and offered useful tools for planning and executing public engagement strategies across broad areas of our agency’s work.

We look forward to additional organizational development opportunities in the New Year, including an all-Staff workshop in late January on Creating an Inclusive Environment, a session conducted over two days by the Department of Human Resources’ Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Learning team.

Staffing Updates

I am pleased to report that Steven Massey assumed duties as our new Principal Information Systems Business Analyst (1054), effective December 18, 2017. As part of the FY18 budget, this new position resulted from a re-classification of less senior IT position in recognition of the continually growing demand for technological innovation in our work and the expanded supervisory duties required in our IT division. Steven has been serving as our Senior IS Business Analyst (1053) overseeing our Electronic Disclosure and Data Analysis projects. As a result of this hiring, which was through a competitive exam-based process, Steven will continue in that capacity while also now assuming a broader range of duties including supervision of our EDDA team of three analysts. We are working to post the job announcement for the Senior IS Business Analyst vacancy in the coming weeks.

At the end of December, we will mark the conclusion of Dorys E. Lorio’s service to the Ethics Commission as a Senior Human Resources Analyst assigned to assist with our hiring plan over the past year. Through a temporary work order with the Department of Human Resources, Dorys has played a major role in our ability to make progress with our busy recruitment and hiring processes. Her knowledge, professionalism, and collegiality will be missed!  We will continue to work closely with the Department of Human Resources Client Services team on our remaining job openings, which are summarized in Table 1 below.

Table 1 -Status of Ethics Commission Positions in Recruitment
Position Working TitleDivisionStatusTypeJob Class Title/No
IS Business AnalystElectronic Disclosure and Data AnalysisOral interview phase.Vacancy/ExemptIS Business Analyst (1052)
AuditorAuditsOral interview phase.Vacancy/non-exemptAdministrative Analyst (1822)
Senior AuditorAuditsExam review phase.Vacancy/non-exemptSenior Admin Analyst (1823)
Senior Investigator/Legal AnalystEnforcementExam review phase.Vacancy/non-exemptSenior Admin Analyst (1823)
Sr. IS Business AnalystEl. Discl & Data AnalysisJob posting in development.Vacancy/non-exemptSenior IS Business Analyst (1053)
Principal Admin. AnalystEngt/ComplianceJob posting in development.Vacancy/non-exemptPrinc. Admin Analyst (1824)
Sr. Admin. AnalystEngt/ComplianceJob posting in development.New/non-exemptSenior Admin Analyst (1823)

FY19-20 Budget Preparation

On December 6th, the Mayor’s Office provided City departments with budget instructions in preparation for fiscal year 2019 and 2020 budget submissions, which are due in February. In brief, the instructions asked departments to submit budgets that reflect no new full-time equivalencies, no increases in expenditures, and that provide a first year cut of 2.5 percent and a second year cut of 2.5 percent. We understand that this would equate to reductions of $99,223 in FY19 and of $198,446 in FY20 for our department. Because roughly 90 percent of our budget is attributable to salaries and only 10 percent to all other administrative and program expenses, achieving those targets would result in a reduction of staff positions. We are continuing to assess our budget needs – including any legislative proposals that would require funding to implement – and look forward to providing further information at the Commission’s January meeting.Revenues ReportTable 2 shows the revenues received by the Commission during the fiscal year that began on July 1, 2017, as of December 12, 2017.

Table 2- Summary of FY 2017-18 Revenues as of December 12, 2017
 Source Budgeted Amount FY 17-18 Receipts as of December 12, 2017
 Lobbyist Registration Fees $85,000 $10,600
 Lobbyist Fines $500 $1,150
 Campaign Consultants Fees $7,000 $2,255
 Contact Lobbyist and Other e.g., copies made by public $2,450 $0
 Statement of Economic Interests Filings-Late Fees $1,250 $152
 Campaign Consultant Fines$1,000 $700
 Campaign Finance Fines$23,000 $33,107
 Ethics, Other/ Administrative Fines Levied by that Commission$7,500 $200
Major Developer Fee$0$1,500
 Total $127,700$49,664

Lastly, the Staff of the Ethics Commission join this week with our colleagues throughout City government in reflecting on public service values and on the impact of a lifetime of service to the City by Mayor Ed Lee.  We honor that contribution to San Francisco, and we offer our deepest condolences to his family, friends, and City Hall Staff.

I look forward to answering any questions about this report at your meeting on December 18th.

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