Elsbernd taps Lobbyists

by Larry Bush on 03/26/2011

in Merely Rumors

Supervisor Sean Elsbernd tapped City Hall lobbyists and businesses at $5,000 each to make charitable contributions to the Irish Immigration Pastoral Center in February.

Elsbernd, as a member of the Board of Supervisors’ Rules Committee, currently is weighing the selection of the Board’s choice for the San Francisco Ethics Commission which oversees compliance and rules on violations of lobbyists and political contributors.

Supervisor Elsbernd’s fundraising took place at his annual Crabfest.

Among the reported contributors who responded to Supervisor Elsbernd’s request are the Shorenstein Realty Company, which owns the building that hopes to nail Twitter as a tenant if the Board approves a tax holiday for the internet company; Platnium Advisors, one of the city’s leading lobbying firms and whose principal is a partner in a Treasure Island marina contract; AT&T, San Francisco Association of Realtors, Sutter West Bay Hospitals; Catholic Healthcare West; and Charles Schwab.

No other reports of “behested” payments were filed for the peeriod at the Ethics Commission.


{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Patrick Monette-Shaw March 28, 2011 at 6:22 am

You mean like Elsbernd’s Crabfest held in February 2009, which was ostensibly held to raise funds for his benefactress, Louise Renne, and her Laguna Honda Foundation?

According to the 2009 IRS Form 990 tax return filed by Laguna Honda Volunteers, Inc., Elsbernd’s preferred fundraiser, Nichelle Lyons, was paid $10,000 for fundraising, though they didn’t specify for what Laguna Honda fundraising event.

But Community Initiatives — the separate non-profit acting as the “fiscal sponsor” for Louise Renne’s Laguna Honda Foundation, which weirdly has its own IRS 501(c)(3) designation but somehow needs a “fiscal sponsor” — also reported on its 2009 tax return that Nichelle Lyons had been paid another $42,993 to raise funds for Elsbernd’s crabfest to help out his pal, Renne in 2009. The event raised $151,650, of which Lyons pocketed 28.3%.

So far, Lyons has earned up to $53,000 in fees that most donors thought were being directed to actual elderly and disabled patients at Laguna Honda Hospital.

How much she was paid to help Eslbernd raise funds for Renne’s Black Tie Gala Dinner at LHH on June 24, 2010 is not yet known. Did Lyons again pocket nearly one-third of the estimated $400,000 raised at that event?

Eslbernd should recuse himself from voting on the Board of Supervisors’ Rules Committee that is currently weighing the selection of the Board’s choice for the San Francisco Ethics Commission, which oversees compliance and rules on violations of lobbyists and political contributors.

If he doesn’t recuse himself, there will be lingering questions about his relationship with Nichelle Lyons and potential violations of lobbyists and political contributors.

Patrick Monette-Shaw


Judith Terracina March 31, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Supervisor Sean Elsbernd is required to file 803 forms with the Ethics Commission
Regarding payments at the behest of an Elected Officer.
-the payments are made principally for legislative, governmental, or charitable purposes, and
-the payments are made principally for purposes unrelated to the official’s candidacy for elected office.

On March 6, 2009 he reported for period 2/4/09 to 3/2/09 receiving money for the Laguna Honda Foundation (Exempt Status12 /Date 1957) for Crabfest Fundraising event on 2/27/09 from:
Don Fisher $5,000 (2/4/09)
Dede Wilsey $5,000 (2/5/09)
Charles Schwab $5,000 (2/19/09)
SFAR $5,000 (2/25/09)
Platinum Advisors $5,000 (3/2/09)

On March 17, 2010 he reported
Lennar Urban 49 Stevenson St. gave $5,000 on 1/21/10 to him for The Jane Pomeroy Center at 207 Skyline Blvd.
The following donated to the Crabfest Fundraiser:
California Pacific Medical Center $5,000 (2/24/10)
San Francisco Association of Realtors $5,000 (2/10/10)
Catholic Healthcare West $5,000 (2/2/10)
Charles & Helen Schwab $5,000 (2/16/10)
The following donated to the Laguna Honda Gala:
Turner Construction $100,000 (2/22/10)

On May 13, 2010 he reported
Anshen & Allen 901 Market St. gave $25,000 on 4/2/10 to Laguna Honda Volunteers

On July 12, 2010 he reported
Trinity Management Services 333 Bay St. gave $15,000 to Laguna Honda Volunteers
The following donated to the Laguna Honda Gala:
Wilsey Property $25,000 (4/26/10)
Catholic Healthcare West $25,000 4/30/10)
Kaiser Permanente $10,000 (5/24/10)
Comcast Corporation $5,000 (5/27/10)


Aaron Goodman March 29, 2011 at 8:08 am

Do not forget the Parkmerced development, and the major contributions to both Newsome, and other politicians by developers/owners of Parkmerced past and present.

there is plenty of cash in this bath-tub…..wait till they build the water retention ponds in parkmerced at juan bautista circle and the first kid drowns….or when the first tower falls in the next earthquake….

sue stellar/fortress and elsbernd for millions. plus any politician who supported the project to date.


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