CalPERS Approves Political Contribution Guideline Despite Vehement U.S. Chamber Opposition

At yesterday’s meeting, the Investment Committee of the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) approved updates to its “Global Principles of Accountable Corporate Governance”. Among other changes, the update includes a new Principle 6.5 regarding charitable and political contributions.

The genesis of this proposal was a June 1, 2011 letter from California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer asking that CalPERS ”develop a formal corporate govemance policy on political campaign spending”. The Treasurer sent the same letter to the California State Teachers’ Retirement System. The Treasurer is an ex officio member of the CalPERS Board of Administration. Govt. Code § 20090(d). He is also a member of the Investment Committee that approved the updated guidelines.

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