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Denying the Hedge Hogs: Board votes against investing in charter supporter’s hedge fund
This is a positive development -- hit those Eva supporting slugs in their pocket books. Our pension money should not go to people who declare war on us.
NY Post reports:
a rare move, the board that oversees the city’s retirement fund for
civil servants killed a proposal to invest in a high-yield hedge fund —
run by one of the city’s biggest investors in charter schools, sources
told The Post.
New York City Employees’ Retirement System nixed a recommendation from
the comptroller’s office to sink a portion of its $54 billion pension
fund into Gotham Asset Management, which is run by Success Academies
co-founder Joel Greenblatt.
The charter network is overseen by Eva Moskowitz, a long-time foe of Mayor de Blasio.
11-member board is stacked with reps who are allied with the
anti-charter teachers’ union — including appointees from de Blasio,
Borough Presidents Eric Adams and Ruben Diaz Jr. and leaders of three
major city unions.
extremely rare for public pensions to be run like this,” said an expert
on municipal finance. “The fact that we do it through these boards
lends itself to decision-making that isn’t solely based on rates of
returns. It can get political.”
investment was rejected even though it’s unusual for such proposals to
be derailed after making it onto the board’s agenda, according to a
source familiar with the process.
Investment recommendations are made only after considerable economic research by a division of the comptroller’s office.
“New York denied itself the opportunity to invest and get a great return,” said a separate source familiar with the vote.
four fund offerings have done relatively well since launching over a
stretch of time, ranging from a 7.8 percent return for one launched nine
months ago to 48 percent for the oldest fund, launched in August 2012.
Officials at the hedge fund declined comment.
not possible to determine which NYCERS reps voted down the measure —
nor their motivation — because the action was taken in executive
Comptroller’s Bureau of Asset Management referred Greenblatt’s hedge
fund to NYCERS for consideration as a potential investment last month,
but a spokesman for Comptroller Scott Stringer declined to say how it
learned of the fund.
the investment adviser to the New York City Pension Funds, the Bureau
of Asset Management recommends investments based strictly on their
merits,” said Stringer spokesman Eric Sumberg.
is among the 11 trustee members. Other board members either did not
return calls or declined to comment, citing the confidentiality of
discussions that took place in an executive meeting on Feb. 24.
But some of the reps have made it clear in the past that ideological considerations are fair game for investment decisions.
public advocate in late 2012, de Blasio called for the city’s pension
funds to divest themselves from firms that manufacture military-grade
guns — both for financial prudence and moral reasons.
our fiduciary duty, we should not be giving capital to an industry that
is responsible for the deaths of thousands of Americans each year,” de
Blasio said shortly after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.
about the board’s vote, UFT President Michael Mulgrew said, “We’re
confident that the NYCERS board members voted in the best interest of
UFT is not among the three unions — DC-37, TWU Local 100 and Teamsters
Local 237 — that sits on the NYCERS board. But its parent union, the
American Federation of Teachers, has sought to steer pension funds to
invest with firms that help, or at least don’t harm, union members.