South Carolina lawmakers passed a bill Thursday enabling the $25 billion South Carolina Retirement Systems, Columbia, to raise its equity allocation to 70% of assets, from the current 40% cap. The bill awaits Gov. Mark Sanford's signature; he is expected to sign the bill.
If the bill is signed, the system's investment committee might, at a June 10 meeting, recommend raising the equity allocation to 50%, said Michael Sponhour, spokesman for the South Carolina Budget and Control Board, which oversees the pension fund. The full board would then vote June 14. Current equity managers would receive additional money in proportion to their existing allocations, Mr. Sponhour said.
The bill also consolidates authority in a new investment commission that would directly approve pension fund investments, instead of going through the budget and control board. The commission was given investment authority over both equities and fixed income; the state treasurer currently manages the fixed-income portion of the pension fund's investments. The bill also makes the state treasurer a member of the new investment commission, although not its chair.