Bill Would Ban NJ Pension Funds From Investing In Gun Manufacturers

Feb 22, 2018

Senator Vin Gopal

Some New Jersey lawmakers are introducing legislation to ban the state's public employee pension funds from investing in companies that manufacture guns.

Assemblyman Eric Houghtaling is one of the bill's sponsors.

"I don't think gun manufacturers should profit from the pensions we have in the state of New Jersey and we want to set an example. I think if we're really committed to gun control, we need to have a starting point and move and continue forward."

Senator Vin Gopal says gun manufacturers should not benefit from pension fund investments.

"We want to send a message to our children that this is not a healthy way to go to be spending tax dollars on these guns that are out there killing kids all over the country."

Assemblyman Hal Wirths believes the legislation is an attempt to politicize tragic shootings.

"These are companies that are making weapons for law enforcement, for the military, the people that protect all it. So I think it's politics as usual and that we should leave it up to the experts where to invest their money."

State Investment Council chairman Tom Byrne says he'd welcome the ban.

“I have asked the staff that we not own any gun manufacturers. I’ve been assured that we do not own any firms that produce semiautomatic or assault weapons, thank heavens.”

Byrne says the ban would not hurt the pension funds’ returns.