A rift has developed over Oklahoma’s enforcement of a law boycotting large banks and financial firms with ESG policies that discriminate against the state’s oil and gas industry.
The Oklahoma Public Employees Association has come out against the efforts of State Treasurer Todd Russ to ban such firms from being allowed to handle state pension funds and other investments. Instead, the OPEA argued the enforcement of the law might cost the state tens of millions of dollars and not live up to its promise to thousands of retired public employees.
The Oklahoman reported the OPEA came out on its website with a statement against the actions of Russ.
“We have made great progress for state employees and refuse to stand idly by as Treasurer Russ diminishes our members’ hard-earned retirement funds and the promises made by the state to public sector employees in the name of political activism.”
The OPEA accused Treasurer Russ of neglecting his fiduciary duty to Oklahomans and “instead chosen to undermine the will and fiduciary duty of Oklakhoma’s pensions.”
“Our treasurer appears to be motivated by outside voices. Why else would he be so rigid in these attacks that will ultimately hurt the citizens of Oklahoma?”asked the OPEA article which also alleged politics is behind it.
“Russ is a leading member of the State Financial Officers Foundation (SFOF) and has accepted thousands of dollars to attend their events. The group – which among its funders is a large amount of right-wing policy organizations with ties to conservative dark money leader Leonard Leo – has been driving much of the public support for Treasurer Russ and his boycott list.”
Click here for The Oklahoman