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Divestment

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NEWS
September 29, 2006
CREDIT Where Credit Is Due Dept.: City Controller Alan Butkovitz should be commended for convincing the city's pension board to divest funds in companies doing business in Sudan. Sudan is Africa's largest country, and a campaign of genocide in the Darfur region has caused the deaths of 400,000 people and the displacement of millions more. It's been called one of the worst nightmares in recent history. The divesture involves $145 million in pension funds to be diverted to other investments.
NEWS
January 16, 1986 | By GENE SEYMOUR, Daily News Staff Writer
A member of the University of Pennsylvania board of trustees said yesterday he believes his colleagues will vote tomorrow to begin a plan for limited divestment of South Africa-related stocks. Members of Penn's Trustee Committee on University Responsibility, which has been studying the issue and polling the Penn community on divestment, is spending today preparing its recommendation to the full 66-member board tomorrow. Committee chairman Richard Brown said he could not comment on the issue until then.
NEWS
January 16, 1986 | By Dick Pothier, Inquirer Staff Writer
Although the action may not have a major impact on apartheid, the University of Pennsylvania should sell its $110 million in South Africa- related investments because it is the morally right thing to do, Bishop Desmond Tutu told a group of university and corporate leaders yesterday. Several participants at the meeting, a private breakfast at the home of Penn President Sheldon Hackney, said Bishop Tutu did not bring up the issue of divestment but made the statement in answer to a question.
NEWS
June 21, 1986 | By Linda Loyd, Inquirer Staff Writer
Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania have set a firm deadline for withdrawing investments from South Africa if "substantive progress" in dismantling apartheid is not made by June 30, 1987. If progess is not made in the next 12 months, the university will give companies in which it has investments until June 30, 1988, to pull out of South Africa, or Penn will sell its holdings in those firms. The trustees voted unanimously to modify a Jan. 17 decision that had set an 18-month timetable before the university would consider divesting its stock and other holdings, worth $92 million.
NEWS
February 4, 1987 | By Dan Meyers, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
Supporters of a proposed Pennsylvania law that would require state government, cities and public retirement funds to shed all investments in South Africa said yesterday that they have two new advantages this year. One is that Gov. Casey favors broad divestiture of holdings in South Africa. His predecessor, Dick Thornburgh, called for limited divestiture and waited until the last of his eight years as governor to do so. Another advantage, said House Speaker K. Leroy Irvis (D., Allegheny)
NEWS
March 19, 1987 | By HOWARD SCHNEIDER, Daily News Staff Writer
The city wouldn't be able to buy Oreo cookies or IBM computers, and replacements for City Council's fleet of Fords would be taboo under a South African divestment bill approved yesterday by Council's Rules Committee. The bill, introduced almost three years ago by City Councilman David Cohen, prohibits city agencies from buying products or services from companies that do business or have investments in South Africa. The restrictions also apply to companies that trade with neighboring Namibia (South West Africa)
NEWS
March 8, 1989 | By Jeffrey Taylor, Daily News Staff Writer
Legislation that would ban the city from doing any business with companies linked to South Africa is morally right but too hard to carry out, a Goode administration official told City Council yesterday. "On the one hand, it makes a strong moral statement," city Procurement Commissioner Angela Dowd-Burton said at a Council hearing on the bill. "On the other hand, it may do so in a way that is cumbersome to enforce and costly in its application. " Council's Rules Commitee, chaired by Councilman David Cohen, is considering the Cohen-sponsored bill, which would make the city's anti-apartheid policies among the toughest in the nation.
NEWS
March 18, 1986 | By Linda Loyd, Inquirer Staff Writer
Five University of Pennsylvania students and four campus organizations yesterday filed suit, seeking to set aside the Jan. 17 vote by Penn trustees to wait 18 months before considering whether to sell $92 million in investments in companies doing business in South Africa. The suit filed in the Orphan's Court Division of Common Pleas Court sought to void the trustees' Jan. 17 vote, alleging violations of the Pennsylvania Open Meeting Law and conflicts of interests among some trustees.
NEWS
June 21, 1986 | By VALERIA M. RUSS, Daily News Staff Writer
University of Pennsylvania trustees agreed yesterday to divest by June 1988 Penn's holdings in firms doing business in South Africa if no substantive progress has been made in dismantling apartheid. But the move did little to satisfy student leaders of Penn's Anti-Apartheid Coalition. Chanting slogans that mocked the university's position, about 20 students briefly disrupted the trustees' meeting at the Furness Building on Penn's campus. " 'We abhor apartheid, but we're not going to do anything about it' - that's how we feel the trustees react toward apartheid," Polly Farnum, a leader of the coalition, said afterward.
NEWS
June 21, 2014 | By Susan Snyder, Inquirer Staff Writer
Few would argue that tobacco has any redeeming qualities, but is it a "moral evil"? That's the question members of the University of Pennsylvania's board of trustees likely will grapple with Friday when they consider a proposal to prohibit the investment of university endowment funds in tobacco products. The discussion follows an open letter signed by 530 senior Penn faculty members, urging divestment from tobacco companies, and a 17-page proposal authored by Penn professors and several others.
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NEWS
June 28, 2016 | By Andrew Seidman, TRENTON BUREAU
New Jersey is about to boycott a boycott movement against Israel. Lawmakers on Monday are expected to pass legislation that would prohibit the state Treasury Department from investing public employee pension funds in companies that boycott Israel as part of the so-called "boycott, divestment, and sanctions" movement. It would join about a dozen other states that have taken similar action, most recently New York, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo this month signed an executive order requiring divestment of public funds from companies that have engaged in the BDS campaign against Israel.
NEWS
February 26, 2016 | By Susan Snyder, Staff Writer
Swarthmore College, the epicenter of student protest last year over investment in fossil fuels, has budgeted $300,000 as part of an ongoing commitment to improve energy conservation on campus. The college's board of managers, at its meeting last weekend, approved the expenditure as part of a $160 million budget. Swarthmore drew national attention last spring when students staged a 32-day sit-in to try to persuade the board to divest fossil fuels from its endowment portfolio. The board voted last May not to divest any of its $1.9 billion endowment, citing investment guidelines that call for "the endowment to yield the best long-term financial results, rather than to pursue other social objectives.
NEWS
May 29, 2015 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - New Jersey is considering divesting public workers' pension funds from a private-equity fund that owns a payday lending firm that was fined $10 million last year by a federal agency for using illegal debt-collection tactics. The board that oversees management of the state's $80 billion pension system on Wednesday directed the Treasury Department to ask the private-equity firm, New York-based JLL Partners, to divest from Texas-based ACE Cash Express Inc. If JLL declines, the board said during a regular meeting, the state will consider selling its JLL stake.
NEWS
May 4, 2015 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
A dozen Swarthmore College students waited Saturday morning in the quiet hallway of Kohlberg Hall. Some held hands. Two wore T-shirts emblazoned with an equation: WE > FOSSIL FUEL . The school's trustees, one by one, left a meeting and walked past without an announcement. Four hours later, in an e-mail to the campus, college officials said the school would not divest its endowment money of fossil fuels despite a 32-day student sit-in and faculty support for the protesters' demands.
NEWS
April 22, 2015 | By Erin Arvedlund, Inquirer Staff Writer
A 32-day student sit-in at Swarthmore College ended Monday after faculty voted to support the protesters' demands to divest endowment money out of fossil fuels. "We are ending after a commitment by the Board of Managers to engage us in the weeks leading up to their decision on divestment on May 1 and 2," said sophomore Stephen O'Hanlon, an organizer with Swarthmore Mountain Justice, the student group that has pushed for divestment for the last five years. An alumni petition with 1,100 signatures bolstered their demands.
BUSINESS
January 13, 2015 | By Diane Mastrull, Inquirer Columnist
Surrounded by vintage milkshake machines, waffle irons, Pyrex bowls, percolators, toasters, refrigerators, pizzelle makers, blenders, radios, clocks, electric fry pans, colanders, sifters, pots, lids, aluminum ice cube trays, and 6,000 to 8,000 Life magazines, among other things, Rich Boris had a candid explanation for the origin four years ago of his Kitch-n Collectibles shop in Roxborough. "It's called hoarding," he said with a laugh. That, combined with this practical thought as Boris, a retired Philadelphia firefighter, headed into his 60s: "Once you're old enough to start collecting Social Security, you have to start selling stuff.
NEWS
June 22, 2014 | By Susan Snyder, Inquirer Staff Writer
A proposal for the University of Pennsylvania to divest its $7.7 billion endowment from tobacco stocks died Friday without a vote by the board of trustees. Board chairman David L. Cohen said tobacco does not qualify as a "moral evil" - a criterion for divestment under Penn's policy - even though it causes serious health problems. "Let me be clear," Cohen said on the floor of the trustees meeting on campus Friday, "I am no friend of tobacco. I don't use tobacco products. I've never used tobacco products.
NEWS
June 21, 2014 | By Susan Snyder, Inquirer Staff Writer
Few would argue that tobacco has any redeeming qualities, but is it a "moral evil"? That's the question members of the University of Pennsylvania's board of trustees likely will grapple with Friday when they consider a proposal to prohibit the investment of university endowment funds in tobacco products. The discussion follows an open letter signed by 530 senior Penn faculty members, urging divestment from tobacco companies, and a 17-page proposal authored by Penn professors and several others.
NEWS
December 15, 2013 | By Kathy Boccella, Inquirer Staff Writer
Jewish students at Swarthmore College have become the first in the nation to break with the global student association Hillel and agree to open their doors to groups and speakers who do not support Israel. The Swarthmore student board unanimously voted to renounce Hillel International's restrictions, which bar chapters from sponsoring events, hosting speakers, or partnering with groups that oppose Israel's right to exist or support a movement for universities to end investments in Israel because of its policies toward the Palestinians.
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