Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 11 / 15 March 2018

SF Pride board votes to cooperate with controller’s review

The board of San Francisco’s LGBT Pride Celebration Committee has approved a proposal for the city controller to review the organization’s finances and governance.

“The board has asked that our general counsel be the one to facilitate, to make sure we provide every piece of information that the review needs,” Shawn Parker, a Pride co-chair, said this morning (Wednesday, October 27).

Supervisors Bevan Dufty and David Campos asked Pride’s to cooperate with the city controller’s office in an assessment of Pride. The move follows the resignations this month of Amy Andre, Pride’s executive director, and Mikayla Connell, the board president.

Andre and Connell left the organization with a deficit for this year that’s close to $100,000, in addition to local groups who are owed at least $50,000.

The two out gay supervisors have offered to help Pride officials raise money and look for a new executive director. Dufty said recently that since they’ve offered to help restore Pride’s financial stability and community trust, “we requested the board’s cooperation with a controller’s review and assessment of Pride.”

Pride’s board voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve going ahead with the assessment.

Parker said Pride’s general counsel will be facilitating cooperation with the controller’s office because members of the board “always [have] day jobs.”

Ben Rosenfield, the city’s controller, referred to the assessment as an “assistance project.”

“When they are functioning well and working well, the city is getting its best return on its investment,” so they spend time “finding out how we can help,” he said.

Rosenfield said earlier this week that he hopes to have a report to Campos and Dufty and Pride’s board within 60 days.

“Generally speaking, we’ll be making recommendations,” rather than suggesting punitive actions, said Rosenfiled.

The goal “is about capacity building and improving outcomes of nonprofits with which we do business,” he said.

He said on the “rare occasion” there’s a recommendation to terminate city funding.

Nikhila Pai, who works in the controller’s office, said, “We leave those decisions to the funding department,” which in this case is the city’s Grants for the Arts office. This year, the office granted $58,400 to Pride. “We focus on the nuts and bolts, the infrastructure that supportsĀ  the program.”

Pai indicated a review of this type typically include financial documents, as well as information that help them assess governance. That includes bylaws, articles of incorporation, and board meeting minutes.

So far, said Rosenfield, “It’s too early for us to say what we see the issues being.”

— Seth Hemmelgarn, October 27, 2010 @ 2:31 pm PST
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