Florida State Board of Administration, Tallahassee, will be able to invest in Northern Ireland without state statutory restrictions if a bill passed by the Florida Legislature becomes law.
Gov. Rick Scott has until May 22 to sign or veto the legislation, SB 7024, which repeals restrictions enacted by the Legislature in 1988 on FSBA investments in the U.K. region, said John Kuczwanski, communications manager of the FSBA, which oversees $185.1 billion. If the governor does not act, the bill will automatically become law.
The FSBA’s three trustees, including Mr. Scott, vetted a staff plan to seek the legislative proposal to do away with the investment restrictions, Mr. Kuczwanski said. The FSBA sought a review of the restrictions after they prevented FSBA from investing last year “in an attractive real estate credit portfolio consisting of distressed mortgage loans by several banks operating in Northern Ireland,” Mr. Kuczwanski said in a follow-up e-mail.
Easing of unrest and other matters of concern in Northern Ireland alleviated FSBA concerns about seeking to end the investment restrictions, Mr. Kuczwanski said.
The FSBA has no investment exposure now in Northern Ireland, Mr. Kuczwanski said. “Given the opportunistic nature of the asset classes this will impact, we don’t have an estimate of potential future investments,” he said in the e-mail.
Mr. Scott’s media representatives couldn’t be reached for comment on whether the governor plans to sign the legislation into law.