Kansas panel considers divesting pension fund from Iran

The Kansas Legislature
Kansas Legislature (KSN File Photo)

TOPEKA, Kansas (AP) — Kansas’ pension system would be forced to divest from any companies operating in Iran under a bill considered by a House panel.

The House Pensions and Benefits Committee discussed a bill Wednesday that would require the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System to sell stock in any companies that had invested $20 million or more in Iran since 1996.

The bill would immediately impact the pension system’s investments in Royal Dutch Shell, Total and Toyota. KPERS currently holds stock worth about $68.5 million in those companies.

Republican Rep. Scott Schwab, of Olathe, said the bill would send a signal to Washington about where Kansas stands on the country’s relationship to Israel and Iran. But other lawmakers worried that the cost would be high and politicize the pension system.

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