Texas bill puts state pension funds at odds with divestment from fossil fuels

Texas House passed a bill that would require state pension funds to stop investing in companies that plan to divest in some form from fossil fuel companies.

The state House of Representatives voted 92-51 in favor of the bill on Monday after the Senate approved Bill 26-4 on April 15.

The bill asks the state comptroller to “prepare and maintain, and provide each state government entity, a list of all companies that boycott energy companies.” Owners of state assets would be required to notify these companies of their listing and would have 90 days to change their positions.

If those views are not changed in 90 days, state funds will “sell, redeem, cede or remove all publicly traded securities of the company.”

Governor Greg Abbott’s spokesperson Madi Biedermann was unable to immediately provide more information on Mr Abbott’s intention to sign the bill.

The funds cited in the bill include the $ 155.2 billion Texas Teachers Pension System, the $ 35.7 billion Texas County and District Pension System, the Texas Permanent Schools Fund. $ 35.2 billion, Texas municipal pension system of $ 31.5 billion, Texas employee retirement system of $ 30.9 billion, Texas emergency services of 116 million dollars. Pension system, all based in Austin.

Teachers Retirement System spokesperson Rob Maxwell declined to comment. Texas Permanent School Fund officials and Shirley Hays, executive director of the emergency services system, could not be reached immediately for comment.

Michelle Mellon-Werch, spokesperson for the Texas Municipal System and spokesperson for the Texas County and District, was unable to comment immediately.

ERS spokesperson Mary Jane Wardlow said in an email that the system does not comment on pending legislation.

Texas is the largest supplier and refiner of crude oil in the United States, according to the nonprofit Texas Economic Development Corp.