A class-action lawsuit against CalPERS filed on behalf of more than 130,000 California government workers and retirees can move forward to trial, a Los Angeles judge has ruled. The lawsuit challenges a sharp increase in fees that the California Public Employees’ Retirement System levied on people who bought insurance for long-term health care through the pension fund. It argues that the rate hike was different in scale and purpose than any previous fee increase on those policy holders.
Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter and fellow Republican attorneys general in 11 other states want to stop an effort by a California regulator to get insurance companies operating in that state to divest from coal and disclose their fossil fuel investments. Hunter and the attorneys general — as well as one governor — sent a letter Monday to California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones accusing him of trying to "publicly shame those who invest in American energy." The letter threatens legal action if Jones doesn't revise his policies.
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton this week joined 11 other Republican attorneys general and Kentucky’s GOP governor in signing on to a letter demanding that California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, a Democrat, stop requiring insurance companies to report their fossil fuel investments and signing a “pledge” to divest from such holdings. “The threats made by the California insurance commissioner will hurt families, businesses and insurance carriers across the nation,” Paxton said in a statement. “These requirements are misguided, unrelated to insurance regulation, and are clearly politically driven. We will not stand by while negligent, politically motivated requirements harm the livelihood of thousands of U.S. citizens.”
The misuse of settlement slush funds was one of the Obama Administration’s worst practices, which it used to end run Congress’s constitutional spending power. After the GOP took the House and tried to cut spending for liberal interest groups, the Obama Justice Department began to force corporate defendants to allocate a chunk of their financial penalties to those same groups.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has ordered prosecutors to stop settling corporate wrongdoing cases by requiring companies to make donations to third-party groups, a feature of some Obama-era bank settlements that congressional Republicans had opposed.
In a brief, one-page memo dated Monday and released on Wednesday, Mr. Sessions told Justice Department officials they could no longer include any provision in a civil or criminal settlement “that directs or provides for a payment or loan to any non-governmental person or entity that is not a party to the dispute.”