SAN FRANCISCO Jan 8 California Treasurer Bill
Lockyer will urge the state's pension funds to sell investments
in manufacturers of high-capacity ammunition clips, building on
his push for them to divest from firearms manufacturers whose
guns are banned in the state, a spokesman said on Tuesday.
In response to last month's mass shooting at Sandy Hook
Elementary School in Newton, Connecticut, Lockyer is pressing
the California Public Employees' Retirement System and the
California State Teachers' Retirement System to divest from
gunmakers whose weapons California bars private citizens from
The board of the teachers retirement fund, best known as
Calstrs, is scheduled to take up Lockyer's plan to divest from
the gunmakers on Wednesday, when the treasurer will be able to
expand his proposal to manufacturers of ammunition clips banned
in California, a spokesman for the fund said.
Lockyer sits on the board of Calstrs and its sister fund,
best known as Calpers. The companies that manufacture the clips
were not immediately named.
Just days after the shootings in Newton, Calstrs moved to
review its holdings managed by Cerberus Capital Management LP, a
private equity firm that owns Freedom Group, which manufactures
the Bushmaster semi-automatic rifle, one of the firearms used by
the gunman in the shooting deaths of 20 children and six adults
at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
The gunman also shot and killed his mother at her home and
took his own life.
Calling the shootings in Newton a "watershed event" that
raised the national debate on gun control, Cerberus plans to
sell its interests in Freedom Group and return the proceeds to
Cerberus bought firearms maker Bushmaster in 2006 and later
merged it with other gun companies to form Freedom Group.
Calstrs' investments through Cerberus give the pension fund a
2.4 percent stake in Freedom Group valued at $8.8 million,
according to the fund's spokesman.
California bars the sale of semi-automatic firearms
considered assault weapons and Lockyer sees divesting from their
manufacturers as complying with a Calstrs' investment policy on
The policy requires consideration of risks from investing in
companies making products "detrimental to public health and
safety," according to a letter Lockyer sent to the chairman of
Calstrs' investment committee.
California lawmakers are separately moving to tighten the
state's gun laws and restrict sales of ammunition.