PA House Votes to Fight BDS, Extend Local Iran Sanctions

170px-Seal_of_the_Pennsylvania_House_of_Representatives.svgPennsylvania legislation prevents public employee pension funds from investing in Iran. With the president’s rollback of federal sanctions in connection with the Iran nuclear weapons agreement, state legislators are taking steps to extend the state ban.

With the help of Rep. Mark Cohen (D-Philadelphia), HB 1718 came out of the House State Government Committee and has passed the House unanimously. The bill would extend the state ban against Iranian investments until the federal Iran Sanctions Law is repealed.

Also mustered out of Rep. Cohen’s House State Government Committee and unanimously passed by the House is HB 2107, which would apply to BDS, the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel. This bill would require those contracting to provide the state with goods, services or construction to certify that they are not party to a boycott program, such as BDS. They must agree that they will not join such a movement during their contract with the state. Major penalties are provided for a violation. The state attorney general would have civil enforcement powers in case of a false certification.

Both bills now go to the state Senate for consideration.

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