Richard Moore 2008 for North Carolina Governor
In 2007 Richard Moore was running in the primary for the North Carolina Governor. This was his website during the Democratic primary campaign. Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue won the primary with a 16-point victory over Moore.
I worked at the grass roots level for the re-election of Richard Moore. I happened to work in tech support for an online ecommerce site that sold wholesale and retail janitorial supplies including wholesale paper towels etc. Working for CleanItSupply is a great gig. I like the store's approach. Although they started out selling only whole janitorial supplies, they have since expanded and now even sell to the retail consumer. With eco friendly "green" products making headway in the marketplace, CleanItSupply offers a large line of eco-friendly products. In 2006-2007 all my work was done remotely via computer. My hours were flexible which allowed me to send a lot of time on the campaign. It's a shame Richard Moore didn't make it beyond the primary.
Richard Moore on the Issues
Richard Moore's positions on issues that affect North Carolina families and our nation.
Genocide in the Sudan
May 22, 2007
The United Nations estimated that more than 400,000 people have been killed and another 2 million displaced in the Darfur region of the Sudan. The Sudanese government has been complicit in these ongoing attacks, which have been deemed genocide by the American government.
As State Treasurer, I took action to ensure that pension fund money was not used to fund the tragedy in Darfur. In November of 2006, I announced that the North Carolina Retirement Systemshad divested from nine companies that are providing monetary or military support to the Sudanese government. North Carolina became one of the first states in the nation, and the first in the South, to divest from the Sudan. The divestment was part of a new policy we developed to use the pension fund’s assets to help end the genocide in Sudan and in recognition of the long-term risks posed to companies with financial ties to the Sudanese government.
CEO Pay and Corporate Accountability
May 22, 2007
As State Treasurer, I fought to make North Carolina a leader in corporate accountability. Following corporate scandals at such companies as Enron, Worldcom, and Tyco, I realized that large public investors could work together to change the system that produced these scandals, which cost investors millions. I wrote Investor and Mutual Fund Protection Principles that required more transparency from Wall Street and mutual fund mangers. Pension funds representing trillions of dollars adopted the principles and Governing Magazine recognized me as a Top Public Official of the Year in 2004 because of what we accomplished to improve corporate accountability. As a result of my work on corporate reform I was named to the Executive Board of the New York Stock Exchange and I now serve on the board of NYSE Regulation.
I am also concerned by the skyrocketing growth of CEO pay packages. In far too many cases, companies are paying hundreds of millions of dollars to executives who are not creating long-term value for shareholders. This is clearly not in the best interest of North Carolina’s retirees and other long-term investors. To address this issue, I have:
- Voted against five ExxonMobil directors following the excessive pay and retirement package awarded to former CEO Lee Raymond, which was worth nearly $400 million. These corporate directors served on the compensation committee and failed to rein in this unwarranted and extreme compensation.
- Worked to get shareholders an advisory vote on the compensation reports issued by a corporate board’s compensation committee. This will give shareholders a stronger voice to determine the fairness of a CEO’s pay.
- Worked with other investors to demand more pay-for-performance measures and increased accountability regarding compensation at Morgan Stanley.
- Led an effort to amend Hewlett-Packard’s by-laws so that the company would allow shareholders to nominate directors directly to its annual ballot.
May 22, 2007
Preparing the next generation of North Carolinians for the workplace and life is one of the most important things that we do. North Carolina’s public schools, community colleges, and universities are institutions in which we should take great pride. I have had the honor of serving on the State Board of Education for six years and know that there are also many areas in which North Carolina can improve its performance. The benefits of making better investments in our state’s education system will pay dividends for generations to come. My priorities include:
- Helping North Carolina meet its $10 billion school construction need. Our state’s rapidly growing communities and aging buildings are putting tremendous strain on our school facilities. We need to get our students out of trailers and into new classrooms with modern technology so they can focus on learning.
- Continuing the focus on reducing class sizes and school readiness. Governors Easley and Hunt rightly made education a major priority for their administrations. The work that they have done with Smart Start and More at Four to ensure that our children show up to school ready to learn is very important. I will continue to make sure that these worthy programs get the funding they deserve. My administration will also work to hold down class sizes, especially in the early grades, which research has shown to be an important factor in the educational success of students.
- Increasing the number of students who graduate high school in four years. Only 68 percent of 9 th graders entering North Carolina schools graduate four years later. We all know that a high school degree is absolutely essential in the workplace and we must focus on increasing the graduation rate. I will continue to support such innovative programs as Learn & Earn to make high school more relevant to the needs of students. The state should also examine the possibility of increasing the age at which students are allowed to drop out, which is currently 16.
- Increasing teacher salaries above the national average. Our students deserve excellent teachers and our teachers deserve to be paid as the professionals they are.
- Maintaining the quality of North Carolina’s community colleges and universities. Throughout North Carolina’s history, many of our leaders have demonstrated their vision and foresight to create one of the finest public higher education systems in the country. It is one of our biggest competitive advantages as a state and I will work diligently to ensure the system’s future success.
- Ensuring that every student who works hard and plays by the rules knows that he or she can attend one of our higher education institutions without worrying about insurmountable costs. As State Treasurer, I have overseen the state’s unclaimed property fund, which has used more than $100 million in interest earnings to help thousands of students pay for college. In the governor’s office, I will work to find new ways to help make college more affordable for more students.
Earned Income Tax Credit
May 22, 2007
Following the successful campaign to raise the state’s minimum wage by one dollar, I am now working to enact a state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) to help working families. With the cost of health care, food, and gas on the rise, too many families continue to struggle to make ends meet. A state EITC will reward North Carolina values – hard work, family, and playing by the rules. The EITC will work hand-in-hand with the increased minimum wage to help North Carolinians provide opportunity for themselves and their families. Our business community has done its part with the minimum wage, and the state should do its part by enacting an EITC, which will help 700,000 North Carolina families.
The federal EITC was created in 1975 to offset the effects of federal payroll taxes on low-income families. It is administered through the personal income tax and is based on the individual’s income, filing status, and number of dependents, encouraging work and responsibility. Research shows that the credit has contributed to a significant increase in labor force participation among single mothers and that many recipients use the refund to reduce debt, invest in education, or pay for housing.
May 22, 2007
> The health of our environment is integral to the health and success of our families, businesses, and ultimately, our state. Growing up in rural North Carolina, I gained a strong appreciation for our state’s natural beauty as I learned to hunt, fish, and camp in some of our state’s most beautiful open spaces. As governor, I will work to ensure that our state’s air, water and open spaces are enhanced and protected in a sustainable way.
As State Treasurer, I have already undertaken a number of environmental initiatives.
- Joined an international coalition of investors, representing $31 trillion in assets, to seek disclosure of carbon emissions from the world’s largest companies. 72% of Fortune 500 companies responded to the coalition’s questionnaire in 2006 and their responses are posted at The Carbon Disclosure Project’s website.
- Was an original convener of the 2003 and 2005 Institutional Investor Summit on Climate Risk. At the most recent Summit, institutional investors representing more than $3 trillion in assets developed strategies to encourage companies to better report their environmental impact, as well as report the impact that global warming could have on their business models.
- Directed investment managers to vote the state’s shares in favor of numerous shareholder resolutions demanding environmental sustainability reporting from such companies as ExxonMobil, General Motors, and Liberty Property Trust. These reports can be completed for a reasonable expense and provide shareholders and potential investors with a wealth of information about the long-term viability of companies.
- Worked with the Investor Network on Climate Risk to ask the top 30 insurance companies to provide information on their climate risk policies. Our philosophy is that when you begin to attach a dollar value to the risk posed by climate change, businesses and other actors will better realize the ways in which climate change can affect their bottom lines.
- Called on the federal government to enact legislation that addresses global climate change along with other investors representing $4 trillion in assets.
May 22, 2007
As State Treasurer, I have deepened my knowledge about what it takes to manage North Carolina's finances. Soon after taking office in 2001, North Carolina experienced its worst financial downturn since the Great Depression. Despite facing incredible obstacles, I was able to work with state leaders to steer North Carolina through these tough times. Because of this effective management, North Carolina is one of just a handful of states with a triple A (AAA) credit rating from all three rating agencies.
I am also responsible for almost $80 billion in public money and oversee the pension funds for more than 750,000 firefighters, teachers, National Guard members and other public workers. By modernizing the state’s investment strategies, we have generated more than $4 billion in additional investment returns for our retirees. Credit-rating agency Standard & Poor's recently named North Carolina as having the second-best funded state pension system in the United States for the second year in a row, a testament to our careful stewardship of the fund. At a time when the average state pension fund saw its funding level decrease by about 20 percent, North Carolina has remained as one of only three pension funds in the country with the assets on hand to meet its future liabilities.
As State Treasurer, I also oversee the issuance of state and local debt in North Carolina. By refinancing existing state debt and improving the way in which North Carolina finances new debt, we have saved taxpayers more than $300 million. Those savings go back to the General Assembly for investments in health care, education, economic development, public safety, the environment, and our state's many other priorities.
As Governor, I will bring all of this experience to bear on the state's budget. I will find ways to reform state spending in order to make it more efficient and reinvest the savings in areas of critical need.
Health Care Affordability and Access
May 22, 2007
According to the North Carolina Institute of Medicine, there are more than 1.4 million North Carolinians without health care coverage. More than 250,000 of these uninsured are children. Millions more North Carolinians live in fear that their employer-based care will disappear or become (more)
Raising North Carolina's Minimum Wage
May 22, 2007
In January of 2006, I called upon the state’s business leaders to support raising the North Carolina minimum wage by at least one dollar. With this speech to the North (more)
Outlying Landing Field (OLF)
May 22, 2007
I believe that the controversial site in Washington County for an outlying landing field is not an acceptable option. I recently brought the state’s top executive officials together at the May Council of State meeting to sign a joint resolution in opposition to the Navy’s preferred site for the OLF. I (more)
Consumer Protection/Predatory Lending
May 22, 2007
Unfortunately, there are many companies that make their profits by taking advantage of working families that are already struggling to make ends meet. As part of my efforts to expand opportunity for hard-working North Carolinians who play by the rules, I have worked to protect families from these unscrupulous actors.
As chairman of the (more)
State Treasurer Richard H. Moore, 46, is a native of Granville County, North Carolina.
Moore began his public career in 1989, as a federal prosecutor in the Eastern District of North Carolina. Among his successful prosecutions as a U.S. Attorney were several complex financial conspiracies including one of the largest check kiting schemes in U.S. history.
Moore was elected to the N. C. House of Representatives in 1992 where he sponsored bills to reform government, expand child care tax credits, help small businesses provide health care coverage, and increase unemployment benefits.
Governor Jim Hunt appointed Moore as Secretary of the Department of Crime Control and Public Safety in 1995, where he led the state’s emergency response to Hurricanes Fran and Floyd. As the state’s chief law enforcement official, Moore oversaw the state Highway Patrol and National Guard.
Now in his second term as state treasurer, Moore is responsible for nearly $80 billion in public money and oversees the pension funds for more than 750,000 public workers. By modernizing the state’s investment strategies, Moore has generated more than $4 billion in additional investment returns for retirees. Credit-rating agency Standard & Poor’s recently named North Carolina as having the second-best funded state pension system in the United States for the second year in a row. In 2004, Moore was honored as a Top Public Official of the Year by Governing Magazine for his national leadership on corporate accountability and guidance of the state’s pension fund.
In 2006, Richard Moore became the first statewide elected official to call for an increase in the minimum wage, forming the One Dollar More Coalition. He publicly challenged members of the state Chamber of Commerce and Bankers Association to support the increase, saying “raising the minimum wage is a pro-business and pro-family measure that will greatly benefit all of us." Later that year, the General Assembly agreed to increase the minimum wage to $6.15, giving tens of thousands of working families a much needed.
Moore has championed a national movement to protect shareholder rights against Wall Street corporate abuses. In the wake of recent Wall Street scandals, Moore authored investment and mutual fund protection principles that have been adopted by pension fund managers across the country to clean up business practices. As a result of his efforts to promote corporate responsibility, Moore served two terms as the only elected official on the executive board of the New York Stock Exchange and now serves on the NYSE Regulation board. He has also made North Carolina a leader in the national movement to ensure that companies adopt policies to address environmental issues, especially global climate change.
Moore is committed to increasing financial literacy and helping North Carolinians make smart financial decisions for themselves and their families. Through partnerships with groups such as AARP, 4-H clubs, the North Carolina Council on Economic Education and the N.C. Jumpstart Coalition, Treasurer Moore and his staff have helped thousands of citizens understand the basics of their personal finances and how to build financial security.
In 2006, Moore received an Eisenhower Fellowship to study business and financial systems in China and India. The experience taught him how North Carolina can better compete in the global economy.
Moore is an honors graduate of Wake Forest University and the School of Law with a graduate degree in Accounting and Finance from the London School of Economics. He and his wife Noel and their three children have a home in Raleigh and a farm near Kittrell, North Carolina. Moore is a member of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Oxford, where he teaches Sunday school.
Richard Moore’s Blog
Reforming the Mortgage Industry
October 17, 2007
First it was Enron. Then it was Worldcom and Tyco. Now that Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo cashed out $138 million worth of stock options just before the stock went into a tailspin, the company is fast becoming the new poster-child for bad corporate governance.
The story is all too familiar. Too many mortgage lenders took advantage of their customers to boost short-term profits. In the end, everyone lost. Consumers deceived into signing unaffordable mortgages lost their homes and investors lost a great deal of money. And the very same people who obsessed over their company's stock price saw the bottom fall out from under it.
Each mortgage lender and broker can ensure fairness and transparency in its business practices. That's why I am calling on all mortgage companies to adhere to a set of best practices -- called the Mortgage Protection Principles -- in order to improve the long-term stability of their companies and the economic vitality of our neighborhoods. These principles should become the new standard for responsible and respectable mortgage lending, and I don't understand why any company would refuse to adopt them.
For the moment, all eyes are focused on corporate governance and the mortgage industry. But history teaches us that these moments are often fleeting. We now have a rare opportunity to inject some transparency and accountability into the mortgage industry, and I am determined to make the most of it.
This is about looking forward. The recent crisis was caused in part by a structural imbalance in the marketplace. If left unchecked, the same conditions that produced this subprime meltdown could easily create another one further down the road. Leaders have the opportunity -- and frankly, the obligation -- to use the assets at our disposal to create an incentive structure that will better serve consumers, investors, and taxpayers alike.
We brought accountability to investment firms. We fought for transparency in mutual funds. Now it's time to reform the mortgage industry.
— Richard Moore
Subprime Accountability, Live from Charlotte
October 8, 2007
On Friday afternoon, Richard Moore appeared on CNBC’s “Power Lunch: Live from Charlotte,” and discussed his recent efforts to inject some accountability into the subprime mortgage industry that has rattled financial markets nationally and caused countless numbers of Americans to lose their homes.
Richard’s making the Countrywide Financial Corporation account for its business model which entailed taking advantage of its customers by qualifying them for loans they were unable to pay back a tactic that may have produced an increase in short-term profits, but at the expense of long-term value. That's bad business – bad for investors, bad for consumers, and bad for the economy. As Richard said, “If you take advantage of your customer, they’re not going to be your customer for very long.”
Recently it was revealed that Countrywide’s CEO cashed in $138 million worth of stock options just before the stock went into a tailspin. Richard called for an investigation into whether those numbers were real or inflated, and whether the CEO’s convenient claim that it was for “ retirement purposes” holds water.
This is only the latest battle in Richard’s crusade to bring the values of Main Street to Wall Street. It’s a story that’s just taking off, so be sure to stay tuned to RichardMoore.org for updates.
Perdue on Highway Trust Fund transfers
October 2, 2007
In an interview with News 14 reporter Tim Boylan yesterday, Lt. Gov. Beverly Perdue discussed transportation funding in North Carolina. She said, "The first thing I'd do is stop the transfer from the Highway Trust Fund to the General Fund, I think that's a really critical first solution."
This is interesting because Beverly Perdue sponsored the 1989 legislation (H 399) which mandated that Highway Trust Fund money be transferred to the General Fund each year. Specifically, the legislation reads,”in each fiscal year the State Treasurer shall transfer the sum of one hundred seventy million dollars of the taxes deposited in the [Highway] Trust Fund to the General Fund. “
[ H. 399, 1989]
So what Beverly Perdue said yesterday is that the first thing she would do to fix transportation funding in North Carolina is undo her own legislation.
Leading on Loans
October 18, 2007
Editorial -- News & Observer
Richard Moore has been a strong advocate for consumers since being elected state treasurer almost eight years ago. He makes another good point in pushing mortgage companies to change practices that take advantage of consumers and have resulted in dramatic increases in defaults on home loans.
That trend, as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke has warned, threatens overall economic growth. It could, in other words, hurt everyone.
What Moore is talking about are these subprime loans that lead some borrowers -- doubtless hopeful about owning their own homes as part of the American Dream -- to believe they can afford something they really can't afford. And by the time they realize it, they're on the street. Moore thinks lenders should have to verify that those borrowers can pay, and should offer them loans with payments they reasonably can be expected to make.
In addition, he wants the companies to stop prepayment fees and penalties on subprime loans that can jack up the expense for those borrowing money. He also thinks lenders should have to present applicants for loans with options for fixed-rate mortgages, not just adjustable rate mortgages whose monthly payments can increase and become impossible. Finally, the treasurer wants an end to incentives for brokers to get people to sign on for high-interest loans.
Moore can't singlehandedly change the system, but at least he's trying, using the leverage of North Carolina's pension fund investments, which he controls. The huge increase in foreclosures even has the attention of the Bush administration, a group that, when it comes to the financial world, tends to believe that if the lions eat the Christians, too bad for the Christians and maybe the government could provide the lions with tax breaks and some antacids.
Consider, for example, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson's tepid, insulting response to the problems with the mortgage industry. In a speech Tuesday in Washington, Paulson did concede that the housing crisis hasn't reached its nadir, and also pronounced it "the most significant current risk to the economy." Yet, his remedy seems to be to that mortgage-servicing companies should voluntarily help homeowners who may be in over their heads. Good for them if they do, but that's underwhelming, to say the least.
Paulson doesn't even propose to end hidden brokerage fees and prepayment penalties, two things that can be killers for consumers. He even said there were times when these features could "make sense" for borrowers. That's preposterous, but not surprising for an administration that's done so little to help middle-class and lower-income working Americans get ahead.
Home ownership is a dream, but the mortgage industry has allowed, even encouraged, too many people to turn it into an unrealistic fantasy. And instead of increased home ownership bolstering the economy, a rise in foreclosures has turned the situation in some cases into a liability.
Richard Moore, scouting for issues as he pursues the Democratic nomination for governor, has seized a live one with some helpful recommendations. Too bad the federal Department of the Treasury, which ought to be looking out for citizens, instead is just looking at them.