South Carolina Retirement System Investment Commission, Columbia, was urged by Gov. Mark Sanford, other top state executives and legislators to delay a plan to create its own external money management firm to manage the commission’s illiquid assets.
“I would be shocked if we didn’t slow the process down in light of what happened yesterday,” Allen R. Gillespie, chairman of the $24 billion commission, said in an interview Thursday morning.
At a meeting of the Budget and Control Board on Wednesday, Mr. Sanford and the four other board members backed a motion by Converse Chellis III, state treasurer, calling for the commission to delay development of the firm, currently referred to as Devco, and to rescind its previous vote approving its creation as soon as Oct. 1.
“It could be the greatest plan since sliced bologna, but we need more sets of eyes looking at it and a more comprehensive review before we move forward with it,” said Scott Malyerck, deputy state treasurer.
Mr. Gillespie said the commission would consider its “next steps” at a special meeting within the next several weeks; the meeting has not yet been scheduled.
“It would be unrealistic to say that there’s not a lot of opposition at this point, but I’m not sure that (opposition) is permanent,” Mr. Gillespie said. ”They weren’t asking us necessarily to pull the plug; they were asking us to slow down and provide more information,” Mr. Gillespie added.
“(Control board) members thought this could be a great idea,” confirmed Mr. Malyerck. “They were not against the idea; they were concerned about the speed at which this was moving down the track,” Mr. Malyerck added.