Illinois Will Pass Bill Prohibiting Pensions From Investing In Companies Boycotting Israel

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After breezing through the state House and Senate (by vote counts of 102-0 and 49-0), Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner says he will sign a bill that prohibits Illinois and its pension funds from investing in companies that participate in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

More from the State-Journal Register:

Senate Bill 1761 creates the Illinois Investment Policy Board, which will manage a list of companies with controversial positions on foreign relations for Illinois to divest funds from, including those that boycott Israel.

The legislation is the first of its kind at the state level.

Once the bill becomes law, the policy board will maintain a list of companies that the pension systems and Illinois State Board of Investment could not invest in.

Illinois already has laws banning investment with companies friendly with Sudan and Iran. Illinois had a similar policy with South Africa during apartheid.

The board will consist of seven unpaid members who meet quarterly to update the list. Rauner will appoint four of the members, while the pension systems will appoint three.

[…]

Rep. Sarah Feigenholtz, a Democrat from Chicago and the House sponsor, said the bill reinforces Illinois’ commitment to Israel.

“We ultimately have a great relationship with this country – perhaps the only democracy in the Middle East – and we intend to stand tall with them and continue a strong economic relationship,” she said.

Read the full text of SB1761 here.

 

Photo credit: “Emblem of Israel” by Original design by Max and Gabriel Shamir; Tonyjeff, based on national symbol. – symbol created in 1948.. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Emblem_of_Israel.svg#mediaviewer/File:Emblem_of_Israel.svg

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