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Introduced Version House Concurrent Resolution 90 History

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HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 90

(By Delegates Storch, Cooper, Dean, Evans, Gearheart, Hamrick, Haynes, Jeffries, Maynard, Paynter, Pethtel and  Phillips)

[Introduced April 2, 2021; referred to Energy then Rules.]

Requesting the Joint Committee on Government and Finance study the commercial discrimination of producers of coal, gas, oil, carbon-based energy, and other productions in the State of West Virginia.

Whereas, The Legislature finds it is contrary to the interests of the State of West Virginia and the citizens of West Virginia for taxpayer dollars or retirement funds of public pensions to be invested in or at the direction of entities engaging in, providing incentives for, or directing strategies to divest from companies invested or assisting in the production of or the manufacturing of any of the following: (1) Natural gas, (2) oil, (3) coal, (4) petrochemicals, (5) forestry products, or (6) agriculture commodities; and

Whereas, The term “board” as used in this resolution hereby refers to the Board of Trustees of the West Virginia Public Employees Retirement System (“PERS”), under the Consolidated Public Retirement Board, as defined by §5-10-2(7) of this code; and

Whereas, The term “fund” as used in this resolution refers to the funds administered and invested by the board of the West Virginia Public Employees Retirement system (PERS); and

Whereas, As part of this study, the Joint Committee on Government and Finance shall study the effect of the board identifying all restricted businesses in which the Fund has direct or indirect holdings; the effect of the Board identifying the names of all restricted businesses into a restricted business list; and the effect of the Board updating the restricted business list at least on an annual basis; and

Whereas, As part of this study, the Joint Committee on Government and Finance shall study the effect of the Board sending to each restricted business that is identified under §5-10E-3 of this code as a business in which a fund has direct or indirect holdings a written notice concerning the contents of this chapter and a statement indicating that the fund’s holdings in the business may become subject to divestment by the system; and

Whereas, As part of this study, the Joint Committee on Government and Finance shall study the effect of the board dealing with the failure of certain businesses to comply with these requirements; and

Whereas, In relation to this study, these requirements would not apply to private equity funds; however, the board shall ensure that reasonable efforts are made during the due diligence process before an investment is made in a private equity partnership to determine whether any investments by the private equity general partner on behalf of the private equity partnership include a restricted business; therefore, be it

Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:

That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance study the commercial discrimination of producers of coal, gas, oil, carbon-based energy, and other productions in the State of West Virginia; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the Joint Committee on Government and Finance report to the regular session of the Legislature, 2022, on its findings, conclusions, and recommendations, together with drafts of any legislation or resolutions necessary to effectuate its recommendations; and, be it

Further Resolved, That the expenses necessary to conduct this study, to prepare a report, and to draft necessary legislation be paid from the legislative appropriations to the Joint Committee on Government and Finance.

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