Saturday, April 14, 2007

Iranian Divestment

Fellow S.O.B. blog site, Brain Shavings, posted the following on a bill introduced by State Rep. Shannon Jones and the CCRP's own State Rep Josh Mandel.

Looks like Josh is already able to open the eyes of some democrats and has support from the other side on this one.

Yesterday, State Representatives Josh Mandel and Shannon Jones finally introduced a bill that would require Ohio's state pension fund managers to cut all financial ties with any company that does business with (or in) Iran. It's a good start. Here are the high points:

1). Ohio state pension fund managers are forbidden to invest in any "forbidden entity":

  • any publicly-traded company with active business ties or operations in or with Iran;

  • any publicly-traded company that has active business ties or operations with any company domiciled in Iran;

  • any non-publicly-traded foreign company that doesn't annually provide an accurate affidavit that it doesn't own or control any property or assets located in Iran, nor does it have business ties or operations in or with Iran.

  • any mutual fund, separate account, index, index managed product, or compilation of stocks identified that can't prove it excludes all forbidden entities.

2.) All funds currently invested in forbidden entities must be at least 60% divested within six months, and 100% divested within a year;

3.) If this divestment causes a state pension fund to suffer a loss, the fund manager gets immunity from pensioners' lawsuits alleging a breach of fiduciary duty;

4.) When private asset managers are under contract to invest Ohio state pension funds, those managers must certify that they won't invest in a forbidden entity, and will divest any funds already so invested. Otherwise they suffer penalties:

  • they get their contract yanked;

  • for one year, they're forbidden from doing any business with the treasurer of state, the state board of deposit, the workers' compensation oversight commission, the administrator of workers' compensation, and the board of each of the state retirement systems (ouch!)

The Ohio Attorney General must enforce the bill, and can bring an action in court to do so (count on Lincoln Logs to keep an eye on Marc Dann for us).

Click here to read the whole post.

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