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Sarlo-O’Scanlon Bill Prohibiting Russian Investments Becomes Law

Trenton – The legislation sponsored by Senator Paul Sarlo and Senator Declan O’Scanlon that prohibits public investments with Russia or Belarus was signed into law today by Governor Phil Murphy.

“This will help to punish Russia and Belarus for the brutal invasion of Ukraine,” said Senator Paul Sarlo, who announced his intention to write the sanctions bill immediately after Russia launched its attack. “This is an international crisis we can influence here in New Jersey by supporting the courageous people of Ukraine. We can help cut off Russia’s finances and the profiteering of Putin and his oligarchs, including sanctions on tax breaks for developers. They obviously have no respect for human rights, but we can make them pay an increasingly heavy price for their actions.” 

“While Putin might be able to control the flow of information within Russia, he won’t be able to shield his nation from the economic impact of sanctions and divestment undertaken by governments across the world, including the State of New Jersey,” said Senator O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth). “These unified actions are not intended to hurt peaceful Russian citizens, but to send a strong message to the oligarchs and others in positions of power that their leader has crossed a line with his war in Ukraine that the international community will not tolerate.”

The law, S-1889, prohibits the state and local government in New Jersey from doing business with the Russian government or any financial institution with Russian interests. It specifically prevents the state from investing pension or annuity funds in companies engaging in financial activities in Russia, and would prohibit the state from banking with institutions that provide services for Russia. The ban also applies to Belarus, a military ally of Russia’s.