CalPERS Adds Contractor Disclosure Rules

November 18, 2010 ( –The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) will now require contractors to disclose whether they’re using an agent to seek business with the fund.

A CalPERS news release said its board also added a requirement for those using an agent to disclose how much they have paid in fees and whether they have a “financial or familial” relationship with current or former board members. Finally, according to the news release, directors said contractors also must identify gifts, loans, or “other items of value” offered to CalPERS directors or staff.

“This is another step toward ensuring that our business decisions are open and transparent,” said Rob Feckner, CalPERS Board President, in the news release. “We want all information put on the table so that we can be certain all of our decisions are based solely on their merits.”

The policy, which takes effect December 1, applies to contracts valued at $10,000 or more. It also applies to those contracts made from Requests for Proposal and Invitations for Bid, regardless of the amount.

CalPERS already requires external money managers to disclose whether they use placement agents when seeking the fund’s business (see CalPERS Adds Placement Agent Disclosure Policy). Last month, a CalPERS-backed bill requiring placement agents to register as lobbyists and prohibiting them from being paid fees based on whether their clients obtained CalPERS’ business was signed into law (see Schwarzenegger Pens CA Placement Agent Bill). 

“We’re moving forward with renewed confidence throughout CalPERS,” said Anne Stausboll, CalPERS Chief Executive Officer, in the announcement. “The changes we’ve made have enhanced our accountability and strengthened our commitment to our members and employers.”