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Minutes - April 1, 2013

Minutes of the Special Meeting of
The San Francisco Ethics Commission
April 1, 2013
Room 400, City Hall
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102

I. Call to order and roll call.

Chairperson Hur called the meeting to order at 9:03 a.m.

COMMISSION MEMBERS PRESENT: Benedict Y. Hur, Chairperson; Jamienne Studley, Vice-Chairperson (arrived at 9:06 a.m.); Beverly Hayon, Commissioner; Dorothy S. Liu, Commissioner; Paul A. Renne, Commissioner.

STAFF PRESENT: John St. Croix, Executive Director; Mabel Ng, Deputy Executive Director; Shaista Shaikh, Assistant Deputy Executive Director; Garrett Chatfield, Investigator/Legal Analyst.

OFFICE OF THE CITY ATTORNEY: Andrew Shen, Deputy City Attorney.

OTHERS PRESENT: Charles Grisham and other unidentified members of the public.

MATERIALS DISTRIBUTED:

- Memorandum from the Executive Director, re: Audit Selection of Year 2-12 Committees, dated March 25, 2013;
- Draft Report on San Francisco’s Limited Public Financing Program, November 6, 2012 Board of Supervisors Election;
- Draft minutes of the Commission’s regular meeting of February 25, 2013;
- Executive Director’s Report for the Special Meeting of April 1, 2013.

II. Public comment on matters appearing or not appearing on the agenda that are within the jurisdiction of the ethics commission.

Charles Grisham stated that he had concerns regarding the content and legibility of various Statements of Economic Interests filed by City Attorney Dennis Herrera.

III. Discussion and possible action on the selection of random audits of 2012 committees.

Executive Director St. Croix introduced the item.

Assistant Deputy Executive Director Shaikh explained the random audit selection process.

Chairperson Hur stated that staff should consider conducting less detailed audits so that a greater number of audits may be conducted, and so that they may be conducted on a more timely basis.

After discussion between the Commissioners and staff regarding how to improve the audit process, Executive Director St. Croix stated that staff will review the legal requirements of campaign committee audits to determine if the process could be improved.

Public Comment:
None.

Charles Grisham read slips of paper containing the names of committees with activity between $10,000 and $50,000. The slips of paper were then placed into a box for random drawing. Mr. Grisham then selected three committees for audit: San Francisco Rising Action Fund Committee, One California for All – Leland Yee Ballot Measure Committee, and Popek for School Board 2012.

Mr. Grisham read slips of paper containing the names of committees with activity above $50,000 to $100,000. The slips of paper were then placed into a box for random drawing. Mr. Grisham then selected one committee for audit: Re-Elect Natalie Berg Community College Board 2012.

Mr. Grisham read slips of paper containing the names of committees with activity above $100,000. The slips of paper were then placed into a box for random drawing. Mr. Grisham then selected three committees for audit: Mayor Ed Lee San Francisco Committee, San Francisco Labor Council & Neighbor Independent Expenditure Political Action Committee, and San Franciscans for Fair Taxes and Better City Services, Yes on E, a Broad Coalition of Small Businesses, Labor Unions, and Technology Companies.

IV. Discussion and possible action on the public finance report.

Assistant Deputy Executive Director Shaikh introduced the item and outlined the number of candidates who participated in the public finance program, as well as how much money was disbursed to those candidates.

The Commissioners and Ms. Shaikh discussed the evolution of the program and the challenges of fundraising that candidates encounter.

Public Comment:
None.

Motion 13-04-01-01 (Hayon/Studley): Moved, seconded, and passed (5-0) that the Commission approve the report.

V. Discussion and possible action on the election of Chair and Vice-Chair.

Executive Director St. Croix explained the process to elect a Chair and Vice-Chair stating that a second to a nomination is not needed.

Vice-Chairperson Studley nominated Commissioner Hayon for Chair.

Public Comment:
None.

Motion 13-04-01-02 (Studley/Renne): Moved, seconded, and passed (5-0) that the Commission elect Commissioner Hayon to be Chairperson for the upcoming year.

Commissioner Hayon nominated Commissioner Renne for Vice-Chair.

Public Comment:
None.

Motion 13-04-01-03 (Hayon/no second): Moved, seconded, and passed (5-0) that the Commission elect Commissioner Renne to be Vice-Chairperson for the upcoming year.

The Commissioners all thanked Chairperson Hur for his service as Chair.

VI. Discussion and possible action on the minutes of the Regular Meeting of February 25, 2013.

Public Comment:
None.

Motion 13-04-01-04 (Renne/Hayon): Moved, seconded, and passed (5-0) that the Commission approve the minutes for the Regular Meeting of February 25, 2013.

VII. Discussion of the Executive Director’s Report.

Executive Director St. Croix introduced the item and apprised the Commissioners regarding the status of the current budget discussions.

Public Comment:
None.

VIII. Items for future meetings.

Commissioner Liu stated that she is resigning from the Commission and that this meeting is her last. She thanked the other Commissioners and staff for their work.

The Commissioners all thanked Commissioner Liu for her dedication and service.

Public Comment:
None.

IX. Public comment on matters appearing or not appearing on the agenda that are within the jurisdiction of the ethics commission.

Public Comment:
None.

X. Adjournment.

Public Comment:
None.

Motion 13-02-25-05 (Hayon/Renne): Moved, seconded, and passed (5-0) that the Commission adjourn.

Meeting adjourned at 10:02 a.m.