Tuesday, April 4, 2017

UPDATE: San Francisco's Baby Diaper-Changing Accommodation Requirement Effective on April 17, 2017

UPDATE - March 31, 2017

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has approved this measure and it will become effective on April 17, 2017. For details, please see below.


Original Post - March 1, 2017

BOMA San Francisco's Government Affairs Policy Analysis Committee (GAPAC) members have reviewed and submitted suggested amendments regarding a proposal in San Francisco requiring Baby Diaper-Changing stations in bathrooms. The ordinance was introduced by Supervisor Katy Tang and, if passed, would make diaper-changing facilities available to mothers and fathers in their

We appreciate that Supervisor Tang included our recommended amendment that will protect a building owner's respective contract agreement with their tenants. BOMA members were also successful in extending the time frame for compliance from six months to twelve months if the ordinance is enacted.

The legislation has been moving through the San Francisco City Hall legislative process with unanimous support from various policy committees. It is now at the Board of Supervisors for their consideration. We expect this measure to pass unanimously there as well.

Please review the information below to ensure you know what this proposal means for BOMA San Francisco building members and your tenants. Also, for compliance, please be sure to have your legal team review the measure.

What are the requirements of this ordinance?
  • All business establishments and those entities that have public accommodations that maintain a Baby Diaper-Changing Accommodation (BDCA) in a restroom available for use by women will be required to install and maintain a Baby Diaper-Changing Accommodation in a restroom available for use by men OR available for use by ALL genders.
    • For example, if a women's bathroom in a tenant's space has a BDCA, a BDCA in the men's restroom would need to be installed or a BDCA would need to be made available in a restroom that can be used by any gender.
      • The requirement would also apply to BOMA members who have restrooms available to the public.
What is the definition of Public Accommodation?
  • It has the same meaning as in Title III of the American's with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. Section 12181(7) and federal regulation adopted thereunder, as either are amended from time to time.
What is the definition of a BDCA?
  • With regard to this proposal, a BDCA is a safe, sanitary, and convenient baby diaper-changing station, or similar amenity. This may include, but are not limited to, work surfaces, stations, decks, and tables in women's and men's restrooms or all-gender restrooms.
What if installing a BDCA is infeasible due to spatial or structural limitations?
  • The San Francisco Department of Building Inspection can inspect and waive compliance if the Department determines that tenant or BOMA member cannot install a BDCA.
What is the time frame to comply with the ordinance? 
  • Thanks to BOMA's advocacy efforts, it is now twelve months - increased from six months - if the law is enacted.
With regard to compliance, what about a building owners lease contract with their respective tenants? 
  • BOMA members advocated for a clause to be included in the ordinance that the new law, if enacted, protects a building owner's respective contract agreement with their tenants. 
What about new business and public accommodations?
  • If they choose to install and maintain a BDCA in a restroom available for use by women, they will also be required to do so in a restroom available by men or all genders immediately upon opening to the public.
What about new buildings or substantially renovated public service establishments?

  • At least one BDCA that is open and available for use by women and one that is open and available for use by men, or a single BDCA that is open and available by all genders shall be installed and maintained.
    • However, they will need to made available at each floor level containing a toilet room available for use by the public.
    • Exceptions
      • If a San Francisco Building official determines that a BDCA cannot be installed and comply with City, State, and Federal laws regarding access to persons with disabilities.
      • If a San Francisco Building official determines that the installation is infeasible due to spatial or structural limitations.
  • What is the definition of substantially renovated?
    • It's limited to renovation of a toilet room and means that any addition, alteration, or repair project to the toilet rooms, performed under a building permit, with the cost of construction of $50,000 or more for the renovation of one or more toilet rooms.
  • Are there signage requirements for new buildings/substantially renovated public service establishments?
    • Signage at or near its entrance stating "Baby Diaper-Changing Accommodation Inside" is required.
    • In a building encompassing multiple establishments and having a central directory, the location of all such accommodations will need to be indicated on the directory.
We'll keep you updated on the progress of this ordinance as it winds it's way through the final portion of the legislative process. Please email johnb@boma.com with any questions that you have and thank your fellow BOMA members for helping to advocate for the industry!

FEEDBACK REQUEST: San Francisco Lactation in the Workplace Ordinance

BOMA San Francisco members, staff, and San Francisco Business Community members have been working with San Francisco Supervisor Katy Tang (District 4 - Sunset) regarding her recently introduced proposal: Lactation in the Workplace.

Provide Your Feedback on April 5th!

NOTE that the BOMA San Francisco Government Affairs Committee will be meeting with Supervisor Tang on April 5th to discuss this ordinance. Please email the Chair of the Committee, Marty Smith at msmith@alhousedeaton.com and johnb@boma.com if you'd like to attend and provide your feedback. The measure will be moving quickly through the San Francisco City Hall legislative process in April so your involvement is appreciated.

Why Was This Ordinance Introduced?

A similar law introduced by Supervisor Tang and enacted in 2016 created a policy to help city employees transition back to work after having a child. The Lactation Accommodation Policy for city workers provides new mothers with lactation accommodations and encourage flexibility in the workplace.

The Supervisor would like the private sector to follow San Francisco's lead and help mothers as they come back to work. BOMA members feel that employees should be supported in reasonable way that makes sense to the small business tenant, building owner, and to the employees.

What Would The Law Require?

The new 2017 law, if passed, would affect the private sector:

  • Requires employers to provide employees breaks and a location for lactation;
  • Have employers provide a policy regarding lactation in the workplace that specifies a process by which an employee will make a request for accommodation;
  • Defines minimum standards for lactation accommodation spaces;
  • Requires newly constructed or renovated buildings designated for certain uses include lactation rooms;
  • Amends the San Francisco Building Code to specify the technical specifications of lactation rooms for new or renovated buildings designated for certain use.
How Has BOMA Been Involved? 

We appreciate that Supervisor Tang and her staff allowed for our members, Blake Peterson, former BOMA San Francisco President and member of the Board, and Justin Sacco, Vice Chair of BOMA San Francisco's Government Affairs Committee, to provide input on her proposal early in the legislative process. 

How Could This Legislation Affect My Commercial Property?

The legislation primarily targets private sector businesses (tenants). Even so, there are requirements for new and renovated buildings that could affect BOMA San Francisco members. 

We were successful in amending the language for adding a lactation room for new/renovated buildings from a square foot requirement to a much more reasonable occupancy load specification of a given renovation project. Even so, the triggers requiring a building owner/project sponsor to add a certain number of lactation rooms, specifically for renovated existing buildings, might still be a bit too high. This happens when:
  • There is a project to renovate the interior of the building;
  • The gross square footage of the interior space designated for employee only use (not public) and included in the renovation project is at least 10,000 square feet;
  • And, the estimated cost of the renovation project is over $500,000.
If these prerequisites are met, then the project shall include a lactation room(s) as follows:

On page 14 of the introduced measure, you'll notice that the project sponsor may fulfill the requirement above by merging the required rooms and provide one room with multiple lactation stations or multiple rooms with multiple lactation stations. 

There may be other concerns so we want to hear from our BOMA member community. Please send your comments to johnb@boma.com and plan to attend our next Government Affairs Committee meeting on April 5th. Details: https://members.bomasf.org/BOMASF/Event_Display.aspx?eventkey=GAPAC17APR

BOMA California Advocacy Update: Bills, Bills, Bills

BOMA California members and staff work diligently every year to protect the industry from legislation that might adversely affect our members' properties.

Indeed, the members and staff at BOMA California are in the process of reviewing 5000+ bills introduced in the California State Legislature already this year and are tracking 450 and currently working to identify 40 or so priority bills that could affect the commercial real estate industry statewide. 

It is still very early in the legislative process so stay tuned to future reports on their efforts in the coming months. We will need our members to provide feedback when asked so help promote or oppose a measure. 

Questions? Email johnb@boma.com

Monday, April 3, 2017

BOMA San Francisco Meetings With Elected Officials in March 2017: Supervisors Malia Cohen, London Breed and Hilary Ronen

BOMA San Francisco advocacy committee members from the Government Affairs Policy Analysis Committee (GAPAC) and the Political Action Committee (BOMA SF-PAC) have been meeting with elected officials in March 2017 to represent your interests and to educate our elected leaders about the industry. Here is a summary of the recent meetings this month.

Your Government Affairs Committee members met with San Francisco Supervisor Malia Cohen, District 10, which includes the Bayview Hunters Point, Potrero Hill, Dogpatch, and Visitacion Valley neighborhoods.

BOMA members last met with Supervisor Cohen over a year ago, and the leaders of the committee thought that it was time that we chat with her about the issues in her district, City Hall Politics (of course!), and her new role on the Board of Supervisors as the Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee. This is an important role for the Supervisor as she will work with her Board colleagues and the Mayor’s office on approving the City and County of San Francisco’s $9.6 billion budget (!).

With a projected FY 2017-2018 budget deficit of $119 million and a sharp increase in projected deficits every FY through 2021-22 (source: San Francisco Controller Proposed Five-Year Financial Plan), We were fortunate to hear how Supervisor Cohen and her colleagues will navigate the budget negotiations with stakeholders going forward.


In a separate meeting with BOMA San Francisco's PAC, Malia Cohen provided her take on the office and why she's running for office. Later that day, our PAC members endorsed her candidacy!

Please click here to read more about the office, Malia, and to donate to her campaign if you so desire.


The BOMA SF-PAC and GAPAC members met with newly elected supervisor, Hillary Ronen recently. It was a cordial meeting to introduce the Supervisor to BOMA and to learn more about her issues of concern. 

Hillary Ronen was born in California and has worked and lived in District 9 for more than thirteen years. She has spent her career working to build an affordable future for her neighbors in Bernal Heights, the Mission, and the Portola.
Hillary’s father immigrated to America when he was 30 years old, and he learned to speak English while working blue collar jobs. After watching the discrimination her father faced in the workplace, Hillary decided to dedicate her life to advancing the rights of workers and their families.
BOMA San Francisco members look forward to working with Supervisor Ronen in the future. 


BOMA welcomed San Francisco Board of Supervisors President London Breed as our guest speaker at the March membership meeting. Ms. Breed discussed a wide range of topics including homelessness, housing, transportation, and the City's budget.

Ms. Breed was raised by her grandmother in public housing in the Western Addition. She is a graduate of Galileo High School, earned a bachelor's degree from the University of California Davis in 1997, and a master's degree in public administration from the University of San Francisco in 2012. Ms. Breed represents District 5. She was elected president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors January 8, 2015 and was re-elected to another two year term as president on January 9, 2017.

Register for the 2017 California Commercial Real Estate Summit in Sacramento - June 13-14th

The California Commercial Real Estate Summit (CCRES) will be held in Sacramento on June 13 – 14, 2017 and BOMA San Francisco members are encouraged to attend! Email johnb@boma.com if you have any questions about this fun and informative event.

This event is the one time of year that industry leaders from all sectors of the commercial, industrial, and retail real estate industry converge on California’s Capitol to meet with policymakers. The summit gives you an opportunity to meet other industry leaders from across the nation, high-level staff from Governor Brown’s Administration, and California State Legislators.

The goal of the California Commercial Real Estate Summit is to increase public policy and political awareness of state issues, and to foster collaborative efforts among business leaders from all sectors of California and their representatives in the State Legislature. Your sponsorship will contribute importantly in achieving this goal, and will signal your strong support for California Business Properties Association and its members.

The Commercial Real Estate Summit is organized by California Business Properties Association (CBPA), which is the recognized voice of all aspects of the commercial retail industrial real estate industry in California.

Click here to register for the Commercial Real Estate Summit
Click here for the Schedule of Events
Click here for Sponsorship Opportunities

For hotel accommodations, please contact the Hyatt Regency directly at 916-443-1234. Ask for the CBPA block of rooms.

About the California Business Properties Association

CBPA is the designated legislative advocate for the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), NAIOP of California, the Commercial Real Estate Developers Association (NAIOP), the Building Owners and Managers Association of California (BOMA), the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA), the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), the California Downtown Association (CDA), the Association of Commercial Real Estate – Northern and Southern California (ACRE), the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) and the California Association for Local Economic Development (CALED). CBPA currently represents over 10,000 members, making it the largest consortium of commercial real estate professionals in California.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Building Facade Inspection and Maintenance Ordinance - Compliance Requirements for Building Owners Forthcoming

On May 6, 2016, Mayor Ed Lee signed into law the Building Facade Inspection and Maintenance Ordinance. BOMA San Francisco Codes and Regulations Committee members were part of the working group that helped shape this new law.

Click here to review the new law.

This legislation requires the facades of certain buildings having five or more stories undergo initial and subsequent inspections according to a schedule based on the original construction date of a building. The program was developed from extensive community and design professional input aimed at reducing the risk to the public and the City’s resilience from façade failure. The legislation provides clarification to the existing requirements of SFBC Section 3401.2 and brings San Francisco up to the national standard of required regular inspection and maintenance. Buildings will be safer leading up to an inevitable earthquake and provide for clear requirements for buildings after the earthquake.

We have received inquiries from our members regarding the compliance timeline for the new law. The San Francisco Department of Building Inspection is in the process of writing the guidelines for buildings owners to comply and it is expected that they will be available later this year. Stay tuned!

UPDATE: Transportation Demand Management Ordinance Impact to Non-Residential Space

UPDATE - March 30, 2017

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance in February amending the Planning Code to establish a Transportation Demand Management Program. 

The Transportation Demand Management Program, or TDM, is a citywide program developed by the San Francisco Planning Department, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, and San Francisco County Transportation Authority, requiring developments to provide on-site amenities that support sustainable modes of transportation and reduce single-occupancy driving trips associated with new development.

The ordinance, sponsored by Supervisors Malia Cohen, Jeff Sheehy, London Breed, Mark Farrell, and Ahsha Safai, applies to projects with 10 units or more of new residential development, 10,000 square feet or more of commercial development, and large (25,000 square feet) changes of use. Residential projects that are 100 percent affordable are exempt.

Read below or click here for more information.

UPDATE: December 6, 2016

The Planning Code Amendment for the TDM Ordinance was heard at the Board of Supervisors Land Use and Transportation Committee on Monday, November 28. The Committee voted to continue the item to December 5th (Board of Supervisors File #160925), and some amendments to the Ordinance were proposed. They include, among others, language regarding the phasing in of the TDM Program.

At the December 5th meeting, the Committee voted again to continue the Ordinance to January 23rd due to a need to review additional issues raised at the meeting. 

In addition, The San Francisco Planning Department identified changes to the TDM Program Standards based upon feedback received over the last two months. Those changes are described in a memo distributed to the Land Use and Transportation Committee on November 28th and posted on Planning’s website. It is expected that these changes to be proposed for adoption by the Planning Commission in the near future.

Please note that two tools are now available online: The previous version, dated October 12, 2016, and an updated version containing the proposed changes described in the aforementioned memo, dated November 28, 2016. Staff is currently working on a web-based version of the Excel file tool and will notify you as soon as it is released.

Please email kenc@boma.com and johnb@boma.com with any feedback you may have.


UPDATE: July 29, 2016

There is a change being proposed to the Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Ordinance that will now - if passed - impact existing buildings who change the use of 25,000 sq. ft. or more of non-residential space and require the building owner to do an assessment on the traffic impacts the change will generate. The Planning Commission is set to hear it August 4, 2016.

About TDM

The Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Program is designed to work with developers to provide more on-site amenities that will encourage smarter travel options so people can get around more easily without a car. These choices are better for the environment, help manage congestion, help to reduce risks to pedestrians and cyclists, and improve the overall efficiency of our transportation network.

A series of development-focused TDM measures are intended to “shift” more typical car-dependent travel practices by providing reliable alternatives, such as:

Delivery services
Bicycle amenities
Subsidized transit passes

The TDM Program would apply to nearly all types of new development and changes of use. The end result: more sustainable transportation options for a building’s tenants, employees, residents, and visitors, which benefits not only the local neighborhood, but the City as a whole.

Frequently Asked Questions


UPDATE - April 21, 2016

On March 3, 2016, San Francisco Planning Commission adopted a new resolution to immediately update the environmental review process with the state-proposed guidelines that modernize the way city officials measure the transportation impacts of new development projects.

For decades, environmental analysis of transportation impacts focused on how quickly cars moved through a given intersection, a flawed approach that was expensive to calculate, did little to benefit the environment and promoted urban sprawl rather than smart infill growth. The new approach is more comprehensive, looking at the method of travel, how far the person is going, and how many other people are in the vehicle to determine the impact on the environment.

The resolution to take immediate action represents the Align component of the Transportation Sustainability Program, a three-part citywide policy initiative to help transportation keep pace with growth in the city.

More Updates

Introduction of Transportation Demand Management: SHIFT

On February 11, 2016, Planning Department staff provided a brief overview on the Transportation Sustainability Program’s SHIFT component, the proposed Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Ordinance. TDM describes strategies or measures that incentivize sustainable ways of getting around. These types of travel choices are good for the environment, help manage congestion and improve the efficiency of the transportation network. The City is working on shifting travel choices as San Francisco grows, making it easier for new arrivals to take transit, bike or other efficient travel methods rather than moving to the city with a car.

On April 28, 2016, Planning Department staff will initiate a Planning Code Amendment for the TDM Ordinance. In addition, the TDM project team will be presenting the Ordinance to various neighborhood Citizen Advisory Committees this spring. Please see below for a list of the upcoming meetings before the Ordinance will be introduced at the Board of Supervisors.

Visit our Shift page for the executive summary and a copy of the presentation that was provided at the February 11th Planning Commission hearing. We intend on updating this page soon with more information related to the TDM Ordinance, so please stay tuned.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

BOMA International Advocacy Update: BOMA Leads the ADA Reform Effort & New OSHA Rules In Effect

BOMA International Supports ADA Legislation Introduced in House

Congressman Ted Poe (R-Texas) recently introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives that would amend the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to curb the practice of 'drive-by' lawsuits—frivolous lawsuits filed by unscrupulous attorneys against building owners citing ADA noncompliance issues. Much of the time, these lawsuits do not seek to remedy the alleged ADA infraction or benefit the needs of the disabled community; the plaintiff is simply looking for a quick settlement.

H.R. 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act, provides a notice and cure provision that allows building owners 120 days to correct identified ADA violations before the commencement of litigation. A balanced, bi-partisan coalition comprised of Representatives Scott Peters (D-Calif.), Ken Calvert (R-Calif.), Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), Michael Conaway (R-Texas) and Ami Bera (D-Calif.) joined onto the bill as lead co-sponsors. To thank them for their efforts on behalf of commercial real estate, BOMA International President Henry Chamberlain sent this letter of support to the sponsoring offices.

BOMA International's advocacy team has been working hard on this matter for years, making lawmakers aware of the issue and securing bipartisan support for this legislation. If you have been negatively affected by a "drive-by" lawsuit, please contact BOMA International's Manager of Advocacy, Dylan Isenberg, at disenberg@boma.org. Your story may help BOMA's efforts on Capitol Hill.

New OSHA Rules Now in Effect

Under new regulations by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that went into effect January 17, building owners now are responsible for having roof anchors inspected and certified prior to allowing vendors to use them for window cleaning or façade inspections. Certifications must be completed by November 17.

The Walking-Working Surfaces and Fall Protection Standards include a number of other new requirements; building owners and managers should read OSHA’s Fact Sheet to understand how the rules will impact their facilities. BOMA International’s codes team also has created a useful guide to understanding the new rules.

If you have any questions, contact BOMA International's Director of Codes & Standards, Steve Orlowski, at sorlowski@boma.org.

BOMA San Francisco's Government Affairs Committee Chair Marty Smith Participates in City Hall Advocacy Day

BOMA San Francisco's Government Affairs Policy Advisory Committee Chair, Marty Smith, represented BOMA at City Hall Advocacy Day, held recently. Over 80 attendees from 23 businesses and organizations - including BOMA San Francisco - met with our elected representatives and agency staff on key issues to the business community.

Marty led a panel on Transportation and left the day-long event with a better understanding of the City and County of San Francisco's political and administrative headquarters. His experience will guide him as he leads BOMA's policy initiatives in 2017.

BOMA thanks the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce for organizing this event - we look forward
to attending the next one!

The 2017 San Francisco Business Agenda

Click to Enlarge
Participating Organizations

Click to Enlarge

BOMA thanks the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce for organizing this event - we look forward
to attending the next one!

Friday, March 3, 2017

SFMTA Director Ed Reiskin Speaks to BOMA San Francisco Government Affairs Committee Members

BOMA's Government Affairs Policy Advisory Committee (GAPAC) recently welcomed back Ed Reiskin, Director of Transportation for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA).

The SFMTA is the City’s mobility manager and operates the entire surface transportation network that encompasses pedestrians, bicycling, transit, traffic and parking and regulates the taxi industry.  As such, Mr. Reiskin provided a great deal of information in a short time frame.  Here are the highlights from his presentation:

  • Department Update
    • Funding
      • SFMTA, like many transportation agencies in the Bay Area and California incorporate state level funding into their budgets. There is a need for business organizations, like BOMA, to support state funding of transportation agencies and their projects.
    • Muni 
      • Approval rating is trending up (good!) to 70%
    • Projects in San Francisco
      • 220 transit projects - $3.5 billion - currently in San Francisco.
  • Agency Objectives
    • FY 2013-2018 Strategic Plan
      • Under the FY 2013-2018 SFMTA Strategic Plan, the SFMTA committed to a mode share goal of 50 percent auto and 50 percent non-auto (transit, bicycling, walking and taxi) for all trips by 2018. Meeting this mode shift goal will put the SFMTA and the city as a whole on track to meet the transportation needs of future residents, employees and visitors.
      • By 2035, San Francisco is projected to have an approximate 15 percent growth in population and a 25 percent growth in employment. This growth requires us to re-think our resources and tools to meet the city’s quality of life objectives. SFMTA can leverage its multi modality to facilitate big picture planning, design, construction, operations and overall funding management to implement complete streets projects that make non-auto modes more attractive to all residents, workers and visitors to San Francisco.
    • Four Goals
      • Create a safer transportation experience for everyone.
      • Make transit, walking, bicycling, taxi, ridesharing and carsharing the preferred means of travel.
      • Improve the environment and quality of life in San Francisco.
      • Create a workplace that delivers outstanding service.