Health Benefits Investments

CalPERS September 2023 Board Meeting Highlights

CalPERS Auditorium

The CalPERS Board of Administration meets several times a year to discuss and make decisions on investment, health, and retirement benefits issues and policies to ensure a sustainable pension system and health care program for members.

Here are some highlights from their in-person meeting held September 18 through September 20, 2023, in Sacramento, California.

CalPERS Labor Principles

Managing Investment Director Peter Cashion led a discussion with the Investment Committee about giving more prominence to CalPERS’ existing language on labor, proposing to unite it into a clear and standardized message known as CalPERS Labor Principles.

You can find the Labor Principles for All Asset Classes on page 3 of the agenda item (PDF) on our website. To catch the Board’s discussion on the topic, view the committee meeting webcast starting at the 52:45 timestamp.

At the November committee, the board will vote on the Labor Principles, which if adopted, will be incorporated into the CalPERS Governance & Sustainability Principles (PDF), which is used to guide our proxy voting to ensure our portfolio companies are accountable for the generation of long-term, sustainable returns.

Election Methods Research

The board held a comprehensive discussion about voting methods and stakeholder engagement to increase voter participation in future board elections. The CalPERS team presented research and analysis to the Finance and Administration Committee on four voting methods used in public elections:

• Majority voting – currently used by CalPERS when the candidate with more than 50% of the votes wins the election.

• Plurality voting – when the candidate with the most votes wins.

• Modified Plurality voting – when a candidate must meet a fixed threshold of votes, but not necessarily the majority to win.

• Ranked Choice Voting – when voters rank candidates in order of preference, instead of choosing just one.

The detailed research on these methods is available in the review of findings report (PDF), or to view the presentation online, visit the 18:00 timestamp of the webcast.

The team provided a deeper examination of the ranked choice voting method requested by the Finance and Administration Committee including the benefits, risks, cost, industry practices, stakeholder feedback, and implementation impacts. Following the discussion of this information item, the committee indicated that a change to CalPERS’ existing majority voting method isn’t warranted at this time. The next election is for the 2025 member-at-large board seat.

PPO Solicitation Underway

CalPERS has four Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) health coverage options, two Basic and two Medicare Supplement plans, and is soliciting firms to administer the plans for the 2025-29 contract term.

The solicitation will help deliver strategies to ensure members have access to high-quality health care that is equitable and affordable, while preserving the broader access choices available through the PPOs.

The PPO solicitation is underway with a decision on a firm expected by July 2024 for the start of the 2025 health plan year. To learn more, access the presentation webcast at the 6:00 timestamp. An overview is also available in the agenda item (PDF) and PowerPoint (PDF).

A recording of all the public meetings is posted on the CalPERS YouTube channel.