By Anne Nesse
Informative hearings were held concerning our State Treasury, and a proposed plan to decrease carbon-intensive investments in favor of a cleaner energy economy.
On Thursday, 2/16, LWVOR submitted written testimony on HB 2601. I delayed posting this, as our virtual testimony was delayed, due to the number of persons testifying, and then delayed due to the winter storms. The committee chair has promised to hear all previously registered virtual testimony. A copy of our written testimony is linked here. Rep. Pham, a Chief Sponsor of the Bill, presented a convincing case for support, recorded here. Her testimony included graphs on the increased performance of non-fossil fuel related stocks, creating increased returns for our State Treasury, and increased PERS benefits. Rep. Pham ended with the statement that current fossil free investments are showing returns on investment 5X greater than more carbon intensive investments. Rep. Golden, and Rep. Gamba testified in support, as well as a coalition of representatives from the organizing group, Divest Oregon, which includes the OEA and 100 other state groups. Only a few testifiers were not in support, or suggested amendments. This bill also brought support from the former New York Controller, Tom Sazillo, testifying on how well New York State was proceeding in its transition towards a fossil free economy, within its investment portfolio.
By Kathy Moyd
HB 3196-1 authorizes the Environmental Quality Commission to establish by rule a fee to be paid by community climate investment entities. The funds come from the purchase of Community Climate Investments by the covered fuel suppliers. It establishes a Community Climate Investment Oversight Account. The League provided written and verbal Testimony.