Utah Files Lawsuit Against National Association of Attorneys General over Taxpayer-Funded ESG Investments

The state of Utah has filed a lawsuit against the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG), demanding that the organization perform an accounting of all of its taxpayer funds after reports emerged that some of those funds were being used to invest in pro-ESG (environmental, social, and corporate governance) companies.

As reported by Breitbart, Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes (R-Utah) asks a Utah court to make a decision regarding whether or not NAAG’s funds could be subject to Utah’s State Money Management Act, a law which states that “public funds are held and invested in accordance with Utah’s public policy.”

“NAAG is a custodian of Utah’s public funds—so its investments must comply with the Act. NAAG holds public money from a series of legal settlements entered by Utah and other States who are (or were) NAAG members,” Reyes’ lawsuit states. “But it appears that NAAG does not comply with the Act. NAAG operates Utah’s funds at a surplus and invests uncommitted assets in securities, real estate, and other financial products.”

“To address the inconsistency between NAAG’s actions and what the Act requires, Utah brings this case to declare NAAG and its Chief Financial Officer to be public treasurers or custodians of public funds under the Act,” the lawsuit continues. “Utah also seeks an accounting to determine what share of NAAG’s assets qualify as Utah public funds.”

Reyes’ lawsuit has drawn praise from consumer advocates, including the executive director of Consumers’ Research Will Hild, who said in a statement that “Utah is practicing good governance by standing up for consumers and not letting the ESG elites dictate American policy.”

NAAG’s funding of left-wing companies has drawn the scrutiny of other state attorneys general as well, including Kris Kobach (R-Kan.), who wrote a letter expressing “serious concern” about the possibility of NAAG investing taxpayer money “‘in ESG-oriented funds.

ESG is an international standard by which private companies may choose to work with certain companies or entities over others, based on their loyalty to far-left policies such as racial diversity and “green energy,” among others. Multiple Republican-led states have begun actively pushing back against pro-ESG companies, including divesting state funds from such corporations.

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About Eric Lendrum

Eric Lendrum graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he was the Secretary of the College Republicans and the founding chairman of the school’s Young Americans for Freedom chapter. He has interned for Young America’s Foundation, the Heritage Foundation, and the White House, and has worked for numerous campaigns including the 2018 re-election of Congressman Devin Nunes (CA-22). He is currently a co-host of The Right Take podcast.

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