Agenda and minutes

Pension Committee - Friday 15 May 2015 10.00 am

Venue: Meeting Room 1&2 - Shire Hall, Gloucester. View directions

Items
No. Item

23.

Minutes - pdf icon PDF 124 KB

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 13 February 2015.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meetings held on 13 February 2015 were approved and signed by the Chairman.

24.

Declarations of Interest -

Members of the Committee are invited to declare any financial or pecuniary interest related to specific matters on the agenda.

 

Please see note (a) at the end of the agenda.

Minutes:

Cllr Brown made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Gloucester City Council.

 

Cllr Cooper made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Stroud District Council and governor at Archway School.

 

Cllr Hay made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Cheltenham Borough Council.

 

Cllr Stowe made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Cotswold District Council and UBICO.

 

Cllr Theodoulou made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Cotswold District Council.

 

Cllr Parsons made a non-prejudicial declaration as a member of Cotswold District Council.

25.

Public Questions -

To answer any written questions about matters that are within the powers and duties of the Committee. The closing date/time for the receipt of questions is 10.00am on Friday 8 May 2015.

 

To answer any oral question(s) put by members of the public.

 

Depending on the nature of the oral questions asked it may not be possible to provide a comprehensive answer at the meeting, in which case a written answer will be supplied as soon as reasonably possible after the meeting.

Minutes:

No public questions were received.

26.

Members' Questions -

To answer any written members’ questions. The closing date/time for the receipt of questions is 10.00am on Friday 8 May 2015.

Minutes:

No members’ questions were received.

27.

Training Update

To receive any verbal updates.

Minutes:

27.1    Some members discussed a recent training day held at the House of Commons.

 

27.2    Members noted that training would be made available for Pension Board members. Any committee members who wished to attend once the training had been arranged would be welcome.

28.

Market Valuations and Quarterly Performance Review of the Fund 1st Quarter 2015 pdf icon PDF 342 KB

To note the report.

Minutes:

28.1    The committee considered the first quarter to 31st March 2015. Graham Burrow, Head of Pension Fund, presented the report. The total fund value at quarter end was £1.7bn; the previous quarter it had been at £1.6bn. 

 

28.2    During the first quarter of 2015 the total fund had achieved 6.0% against a target of 5.4%. Over the last 12 months the Fund had achieved a return of 14.4% and over the previous 3 years an annualised return of 12.6%. In quarter one, the following managers had exceeded their benchmark target: Standard Life – GARS, BlackRock Global, GMO, WAMCO, Hermes and CBRE.

 

28.3    Members noted the breakdown of the various mandates and asset classes and the actual asset percentages for the Fund.

 

28.4    There was some discussion around how performance in some areas could be attributed to volatility of the portfolio as opposed to the performance of managers. It was explained that this volatility was needed across the long term to make the gains that would close the funding deficit.  It was explained that these were the kinds of discussions that officers were having and that this included positioning the strategy in order to mitigate the risk of volatility and provide adequate diversification.

 

28.5    Members noted the rebalancing of £7.58m relating to quarter 4 of 2014 which had been reported to the committee at the last meeting in February.

 

28.6    Members discussed whether fund managers had a ‘lifespan’ and the effects of replacing low performing managers with higher performing managers. Some members explained that it was important not to replace too quickly and to maintain some stability, but recognised the importance of rebalancing.

 

RESOLVED

 

That the report be noted.

29.

Governance Policy and Compliance Statement pdf icon PDF 51 KB

To consider the report

Additional documents:

Minutes:

29.1    Graham Burrow introduced the report drawing members attention to appendix A of the report which detailed the Governance Policy Statement which has been last reviewed at the Committee’s meeting in February 2015. This had been reviewed and updated.

 

29.2    Appendix B showed the full terms of reference of the local Pension’s Board which according to recent guidance needed to be included within the Governance Policy Statement.

 

29.3    One member suggested that under ‘representation’, that it detail the ability for employing authorities to put forward public questions and to observe meetings. It was also suggested that the text on the agenda under ‘Public Questions’ should remind employing authorities and scheme members that they could put forward public questions.
ACTION         Graham Burrow/ Stephen Bace

 

29.4    One member asked for clarification with regards to the Pension Board terms of reference around quorum, with the minutes of the previous Pension Committee meeting resolving to remove the requirement of the Chair from quorum. Officers would seek clarification.

ACTION         Graham Burrow/ Stephen Bace

 

RESOLVED

 

That the committee agree the Governance Compliance and Governance Policy Statements subject to the points raised. The results of the consultation with all employers which have members in the Pension Fund will then be considered under delegation and reported to the next meeting of the Committee.

30.

Pension Fund Administration Strategy pdf icon PDF 53 KB

To advise on delegated actions following consultation with employers.

Minutes:

30.1    Graham Burrow introduced the report explaining that the Pension Fund had had an administration strategy in place since April 2010 and the most recent update had been received by the committee in February 2015. There had then been a one month consultation with all employers who had members in the fund. It had been agreed by the committee that any comments would then be considered by the Strategic Finance Director and Chairman under delegated powers.

 

30.2    Only one response had been received focussing on points that would need to be addressed by DCLG or the national Scheme Advisory Board rather than the Gloucestershire Fund and as a result no changes were required to the strategy.

 

RESOLVED

 

To note the report.

31.

Update on the Pension Board

To update the Committee on progress since the last meeting.

Minutes:

31.1    Members were updated on the arrangements for the Pensions Board. It was explained that the requirement was for the Chair to be independent and that discussions were being held regarding the appointment of the members, including the Chair.

 

31.2    Members asked whether an acting Chair could be appointed at a meeting of the Pension Board if the Chair was unavailable. Officers would seek clarification.

ACTION                     Graham Burrow.

32.

Exclusion of the press and public

Resolved

 

 That in accordance with Section 100 A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 the public be excluded from the meeting for the following agenda items, because it is likely that if members of the public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12 A to the Act and the public interest in withholding the information outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information to the public.

 

Minutes:

THAT in accordance with Section 100 A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 the public be excluded from the meeting for the following agenda items, because it is likely that if members of the public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12 A to the Act and the public interest in withholding the information outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information to the public.

33.

Exempt Minutes

To approve as a correct record the exempt minutes of the meeting held on 13 February 2015.

Minutes:

The exempt minutes of the meeting held on 13 February 2015 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

 

34.

Admission Body Request

To note the request(s)

Minutes:

RESOLVED

That the request for admission to the Fund be approved.

35.

Freedom & Choice in pensions and the LGPS

Minutes:

RESOLVED

 

That the committee agree the recommendations as detailed in the report.

36.

UK Equity mandate

To consider the report.

Minutes:

RESOLVED

 

That the committee agree the recommendation outlined within the report.

37.

Fund manager meetings in London in March

To discuss any matters arising.

Minutes:

RESOLVED

 

To note the report.

38.

Investment Report - Hermes

Commencing at 11:35 for 45 minutes

Minutes:

Hermes gave a presentation on their performance over the last 12 months and set out their strategy going forward.

 

RESOLVED

 

That the presentation be noted.