During the 2016 legislative session, two bills were introduced that would have impacted PERA, one of which was signed into law. The Board takes positions on legislation affecting PERA based on its fiduciary responsibility to act in the best interest of its membership.
House Bill 16-1284
Divest From Companies With Prohibitions Against Israel
This bill requires PERA to make its best efforts to identify all companies that have economic prohibitions against Israel and create a restricted company list by January 1, 2017. Once a company has been added to the list, PERA will notify the company that it is subject to divestment. If the company does not end its economic prohibitions against Israel within 180 days following PERA’s first engagement, PERA is required to divest all direct holdings. If PERA does not already have any direct holdings with the company, PERA is prohibited from acquiring direct holdings during the time the company remains on the list. PERA is required to make information available regarding investments sold, redeemed, divested, or withdrawn in compliance with the bill.
The Board voted to oppose the bill; however, the bill was passed and signed into law by Governor Hickenlooper on March 18, 2016. The Board approved the restricted company list on November 18, 2016, which was effective December 31, 2016.
House Bill 16-1207
PERA Investments in Renewable Energy Companies
This bill would have required PERA to invest at least 1 percent of all moneys that are not already invested in renewable energy companies each year beginning January 1, 2017. If for any given calendar year, PERA was unable to meet this requirement, an explanation of why the condition was not met was required to be included in PERA’s CAFR.
The Board voted to oppose the bill, and the bill was postponed indefinitely by the House Finance Committee.