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Meeting Information

Budget and Policy Committee

2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 


Approved:   11/20/02


City and County of San Francisco


                                            BUDGET AND POLICY COMMITTEE    

Minutes of the Meeting Held

Wednesday, October 23, 2002


1.         Call to Order and Roll Call.  Commissioner Brenda Stowers, Chair, called the meeting to order at 5:34 pm.  Commissioner Alix Rosenthal and Commissioner Robert Kenealey were also present.


Flag Salute


2.         Public comment.  None.


3.         Commissioner Rosenthal MOVED that the Budget and Policy Committee approve the adoption of the Public Notification Policy which was proposed by Commissioner Shadoian.  Commissioner Rosenthal said that she made this motion for the purpose of discussion.  Commissioner Stowers asked for a second.  There was no second and the MOTION did not CARRY.


4.         Discussion and possible action to adopt a Voter Fraud Policy.  Commissioner Rosenthal MOVED, for the purposes of discussion, that the Budget and Policy Committee approve the item.   Commissioner Kenealey SECONDED and asked the Committee what was the purpose of the proposal.   Commissioner Kenealey stated that there were many laws on the books regarding voter fraud and that it was a given that everyone was against it.  Commissioner Rosenthal stated that she also was against voter fraud, but there are already laws that prohibit it.  She said that it was the District Attorney’s job to prosecute voter fraud.  Further, she said, members of the Elections Department are obligated to turn over any complaints regarding fraud.  Commissioner Rosenthal said she agreed with Commissioner Kenealey and that she sees no purpose in such a proposal.  Commissioner Rosenthal asked if the Director would explain what the Department does when this crime comes to the attention of staff.


            Commissioner Stowers said that she agreed with the Commissioners.  She further stated that she felt that there are so many rules and policies already that cover this topic.  Commissioner Stowers asked if the Committee wanted make it a statement of principle that the Commission supports the current legislation around voter fraud and will not tolerate it.  Commissioner Kenealey responded that he could support that.


            Commissioner Rosenthal asked for the Director to make a statement about his policy regarding voter fraud.


            Director Arntz stated that if there was a claim of voter fraud, his obligation would be to inform the District Attorney.  He said that he would also inform the City Attorney’s office.  His department would then assist these two offices in investigating the allegation.   Mr. Arntz stated that the Department has no power to prosecute, and that the Department is not in the business of gathering evidence on its own, but would certainly work with the District Attorney.


            Commissioner Kenealey said that the Commission is against a lot of illegal activity, but that doesn’t mean it needs to adopt a policy against all the crimes it is against.


            Commissioner Stowers asked if there was an amendment to the MOTION to adopt a voter fraud policy.  Commissioner Kenealey MOVED that the Committee state that the Commission, as a statement of principle, is against all forms of voter fraud and that under the law, the Director must notify the District Attorney of any voter fraud that comes to his/her attention.  Commissioner Stowers asked for a SECOND for the amendment of the MOTION.  Commissioner Stowers offered the SECOND.   


            Public Comment

            Peter Fries asked that the Committee direct the Director of Elections to notify the District Attorney if an “allegation” of fraud comes to his attention.  He said it is not the job of the Director of Elections to determine if something is or is not fraud.


            Commissioner Rosenthal asked for a roll call vote on the amendment.  Commissioner Kenealey – No, Commissioner Rosenthal – No, Commissioner Stowers – No.


            Commissioner Rosenthal called the question on the adoption of a policy on voter fraud.


            Public Comment

            Peter Fries asked what was the status of the Commission’s Mission Statement and Goals and Policies.  He said that this Commission came about because of patent allegations of voter fraud in the City.



            MOTION to adopt the voter fraud policy as proposed by Commissioner Shadoian:


It shall be the policy of the Department of Elections to tolerate no voter fraud.  All violations will be promptly turned over to the appropriate agencies for investigation and possible prosecution.


The Director of the department will develop and have approved yearly by this Commission the department’s procedures for carrying out this policy.


Roll Call Vote:  Kenealey – No, Rosenthal – No, Stowers – No.



Public Comment – None.



ADJOURNMENT at 6:30 pm