Scott Mooneyham: Cowell must navigate tricky path on pension investments

By Scott Mooneyham

Syndicated columnist

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RALEIGH — Sometimes even reporters with experience covering state government have trouble getting their minds around the fact that there exists an $86 billion pot of money that is largely controlled by a single elected official.

I spoke to one of those reporters leaving a news conference last week. A state workers group, the State Employees Association of North Carolina, and a consultant that it had hired roundly condemned that control.

The consultant, a fellow named Ted Siedle, referred to State Treasurer Janet Cowell’s decision to put more of the $86 billion state employees pension fund into less traditional investments, like hedge funds, as a “heist.”

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