The West Virginia Legislature this week passed a law creating a new private trust that will manage the $4 billion in state retirement money. Pension assets now will be able to be invested in equities; previously, only certain fixed-income investments were legal, said Craig Slaughter, executive director of the West Virginia State Board of Investments, Charleston.
The new trust, called the West Virginia Trust Fund, adopted ERISA's prudent man rule, Mr. Slaughter said, though it limits equities to 60% of total assets and foreign investments to 20% of assets.
Within 60 days, the governor will appoint a board of trustees to the fund. Assets will be transferred to the new trust fund by June 30, Mr. Slaughter said, adding that there are no plans to start manager searches at this point.