147-69.2A. Investments; special funds held by the State Treasurer.

(a) Firm to Administer Special Fund. - Following a public procurement process, a designee of the Governor, a designee of the State Treasurer, a designee of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and a designee of the President Pro Tempore of the Senate shall jointly and unanimously select a third-party professional investment management firm, subject to the rules and regulations of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, to administer a special fund created to invest assets described in G.S. 147-69.2(b)(12)c. and select investment opportunities appropriate for receiving allocations from the Fund on the basis of potential return on investment and the risks attendant thereto. The State Treasurer shall assign professional and clerical staff to assist in the oversight of the Fund. All costs for the third-party investment management firm and the professional and clerical staff shall be borne by the Fund pursuant to G.S. 147-69.3(f). The State Treasurer shall discharge his or her duties with respect to the Fund as a fiduciary consistent with G.S. 147-69.7.

(b) Organization and Reporting. - All documents of the Governor or the State Treasurer concerning the Fund are public records governed by Chapter 132 of the General Statutes and any applicable provisions of the General Statutes protecting confidential information.

The State Treasurer and the Governor shall jointly develop and adopt an investment policy statement for the Fund.

The State Treasurer and Governor shall jointly adopt a common policy to prevent conflicts of interests such that (i) the designees of the State Treasurer and Governor who selected the third-party investment management firm, (ii) the staff of the State Treasurer overseeing the Fund, and (iii) the third-party investment management firm's employees selecting or overseeing Fund investments do not provide services for compensation (as an employee, consultant, or otherwise), within two years after the end of their service to the Fund, to any entity in which an investment from the Fund was made.

By October 1, 2015, and at least semiannually thereafter, the State Treasurer shall submit a report to the Governor, the Office of State Budget and Management, the Joint Legislative Commission on Governmental Operations, and the Fiscal Research Division on investments made from the Fund and any return on investment. This report shall be made for the Fund in lieu of the reports required by G.S. 147-69.8 and G.S. 147-69.12(b).

(c) Types of Investments. - Assets of the Fund may be invested in those types of investments authorized for the North Carolina Retirement Systems by G.S. 147-69.2(b), notwithstanding the percentage limitations imposed on the Retirement Systems' investments under those subdivisions.

(d) Report on Escheat Fund Financial Status. - The State Treasurer shall engage a third-party professional consultant to conduct an assessment and projection of the financial status of the Escheat Fund. The associated costs for the services may be directly charged to the Escheat Fund. The State Treasurer shall communicate the assessment of the consultant in an annual report to the Governor, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and the chairs of the respective appropriations and appropriate substantive committees of each chamber. The annual report shall evaluate claims by owners upon the Escheat Fund, current and projected investment returns, and projected contributions to the Escheat Fund, current and projected legislative appropriations, and authorized expenses. In the report, the State Treasurer shall assess the status of utilizing the Escheat Fund as an endowment fund and shall recommend an annual amount available for the funding of scholarships, loans, and grants from the Fund. The annual report shall be presented no later than December 31 of each year. (2015-241, s. 6.3(b); 2016-55, ss. 1.4(a), (b), 4.3; 2017-129, s. 10.)