The Yerba Buena Neighborhood Consortium is a dark-money shell entity that has funneled $375,000 to local ballot measures authored by progressive Supervisors in 2016 alone…

SAN FRANCISCO — Today, Supervisor Mark Farrell called for a federal investigation from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development into the Tenants Owners and Development Corporation (TODCO) and Yerba Buena Neighborhood Consortium (YBNC), which are both owned and operated by John Elberling.

“Profiting from taxpayer subsidy and funneling those profits into local political campaigns is reprehensible,” said Supervisor Farrell. “I am calling for an immediate investigation to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that public resources were not used for political purposes.”

In 2013, John Elberling incorporated two organizations on the same day, and used the same address from both organizations. Those organizations are TODCO Group LLC and Yerba Buena Neighborhood Consortium LLC.

YBNC appears to exist only to funnel dark money into local ballot measure committees. YBNC is listed as the major donor in support of Propositions C, M, and X and opposing Propositions P and U. Propositions C and M were authored by Supervisor Aaron Peskin while Proposition X was authored by Supervisor Jane Kim. YBNC has also donated tens of thousands of dollars to Propositions D, H, and L.

Today, John Elberling admitted in the San Francisco Chronicle that he gained millions in profits from refinancing his group’s properties that were initially built and financed with a mix of federal, state, and local funds.

“YBNC’s activity and spending clearly does not pass the smell test,” said Supervisor Farrell. “Instead of reinvesting profits gained from public subsidy to affordable housing needs and tenant improvements, YBNC is acting as a shell entity to bankroll their pet political campaigns.”

The California Fair Political Practices Commission has opened an investigation into the activity of YBNC after an official complaint alleged that YBNC broke eight State and two San Francisco campaign finance laws.

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