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Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Usher Suite, Trowbridge Civic Centre, St Stephen's Place, Trowbridge BA14 8AH

Contact: Libby Johnstone 

Items
Note No. Item

2:00pm

1.

Welcome

To welcome those present and note any changes to the membership of the Board.

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed those present to the meeting.

2.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence had been received from Sarah Holbrook.

 

The Chairman advised that Lynda Croft has resigned from the Board since she was no longer in post at Wiltshire College. The Board expressed their thanks to Lynda for her contribution to the work of the Board over the last 3 years.

3.

Minutes

To confirm as a true and correct record the minutes of the previous meeting held on 18 October 2018.

 

The Board’s action log is also attached for members’ information.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the last meeting were presented, alongside the Board’s Action Log.

 

Resolved:

 

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 18 October 2018.

 

To make the following changes to the action log:

·       4.7 is complete – remove

·       7.15 and 7.20 – defer until September

·       8.4 is complete – remove

·       8.5 – defer until April 2018 and further report in September 2018

·       8.6 is complete – remove

·       8.7 – include reference to statutory timeframes and defer until October 2018

·       8.8 – defer until April 2019

·       8.12 –defer until October 2018

·       9.5 – mark as complete

·       9.9 – defer until September 2018

·       9.13- defer until October 2018

·       10.5 – defer until September 2018

·       10.8 – mark as complete

·       10.9- mark as complete

·       10.11- defer until July 2018

 

4.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interest.

 

Board Members’ Registers of Interest are available here, members are reminded to review their RoI on a regular basis and report any changes to Democratic Services.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

5.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive any announcements through the Chairman.

Minutes:

The Chairman reminded members of the remit of the Local Pension Board and made the following announcements:

 

·        The Pensions Regulator was to increase scrutiny of Funds and the Board would have a role supporting this;

·        Board members should update Richard Bullen (Fund Governance and Performance Manager) on training they had undertaken and an update on training plans would be provided to the next meeting;

·        The Pensions Advisory Service has been merged with the Pensions Ombudsman and it was recommended the fund update its Internal Dispute Resolution Process accordingly.

6.

Public Participation and Councillors Questions

The Board welcomes contributions from members of the public.

 

Statements

If you would like to make a statement at this meeting on any item on this agenda, please register to do so at least 10 minutes prior to the meeting. Up to 3 speakers are permitted to speak for up  ...  view the full agenda text for item 6.

Minutes:

There were no statements or questions from members of the public.

7.

Minutes and Key Decisions of the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee

To consider the Part 1 (public) minutes, and any recommendations arising, from the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee held on 23 November 2017, and to receive a verbal update from matters discussed at the Pension Fund Committee meeting held on 15 March 2018.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Board considered the minutes of the last Committee meeting and was updated that at the meeting of the Committee earlier that morning, the Board’s budget had been agreed as part of the wider Administration Budget.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the minutes of the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee meeting held on 23 November 2017 and verbal update from the meeting on 15 March 2018.

8.

Training Item: WPF Annual Reporting Requirements

The Head of Pensions Administration and Relations will present a training session providing an overview of Wiltshire Pension Fund’s annual reporting requirements.

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Pensions Administration and Relations presented a training session providing an overview of Wiltshire Pension Fund’s annual reporting requirements as detailed in the report.

 

The majority of reporting requirements were statutory, and the Board noted the requirement seemed to be increasing. It was agreed as Brunel Pension Partnership became established, the Fund should compare performance on statutory and periodic reporting against other funds within BPP.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the Fund’s Annual Reporting Requirements and benchmarking the performance of the fund against other funds within BPP be included in the LPB work plan.

9.

Annual Business Plan Update

An update from the Head of Pensions Administration and Relations on the progress of implementing items on the Annual Business Plan.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

An update from the Head of Pensions Administration was provided on the progress of implementing items on the Annual Business Plan. Two actions were high priority and with medium resource risk, these related to the implementation of performance reporting and covenant reviews for employers and the GMP reconciliation project. These workstreams were both in progress and resources had been prioritised to ensure their completion. The first phase of the GMP reconciliations project was expected to be completed by the end of the year.

 

It was explained some other, lower- priority, Business Plan action had been delayed due to recent changes in personnel and vacancies in the structure. It was noted the contract review of the Independent Governance Adviser was considered low priority, and therefore had been delayed, since this was one of many different sources of advice for the Fund. The establishment of a formal process for reviewing the performance of other advisors was also delayed since performance was already monitored informally. The Chairman advised the Pensions Regulator expected advisors to be regularly reviewed and requested this be allocated a higher priority.

 

A question was raised as to why completed actioned remained on the Business Plan and it was confirmed this was to demonstrate that action had been taken. It was noted the Business Plan was to be reviewed for 2019 as the current Plan ran until the end of 2018. Officers acknowledged that preparations for the General Data Protection Regulations were not included in the Plan, however this was captured on the Fund’s Risk Register and pensions team were taking steps to prepare.

 

The Board discussed a self-service portal for members, officers advised this had been delayed due to a need to link this work up with a review of pensions administration software that was to be completed later in 2018. On discussion of item 35 in respect of ESG arrangements, the Interim Investment Manager explained this had been raised with the Responsible Investment Officer at Brunel, and the Committee would receive further training on this.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the progress of implementing items on the Annual Business Plan and to recommend item 12 be upgraded to medium priority.

 

To request that future Business Plan updates include new items which have occurred since the business plan was first produced, and include on going work items that have rolled-forward from previous plans, to capture the full picture of existing and new work.

10.

Local Pension Board Budget

A report to outline the proposed revised LPB Budget which will be approved as part of the Wiltshire Pension Committee meeting in the morning.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

It was explained the Board’s total budget had been agreed earlier in the day by the Pension Fund Committee, and since publication of this agenda the budget had been updated to include provision for an extension of the indemnity insurance policy. Despite this change, the overall budget remained the same, the updated budget is attached to these minutes.

 

The Chairman encouraged members to make the most of the training budget.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the Board’s budget.

11.

Scheme Legal, Regulatory and Fund update

A report provides an update on the latest Scheme, Legal, Regulatory and Fund developments for the Board’s information.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Pensions Administration and Relations presented the Fund, Scheme, Legal and Regulatory update for the Committee to consider. Key updates included that the Government had extended the temporary arrangements on Guaranteed Minimum Pensions (GMP), and  a Private Member’s Bill on reforms to public sector exit payments was expected in May 2018. Members also heard it was now confirmed the age for auto-enrolment into the LGPS would be lowered to 18, this was to take effect from the mid-2020s. The Officer also advised a pensions ‘Dashboard’ was planned for 2019 and this project was being led by the Department for Work and Pensions.

 

 Following questions on preparations for the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation it was confirmed the Fund was working with Wiltshire Council and other LGPS Funds to share best practice and preparatory work. It was highlighted the Fund now had a Governance and Performance Manager, Richard Bullen, now in post who would lead on this work.

 

The Chairman advised the Scheme Advisory Board was to start 3 projects in 2018 relating to: improving member data to meet the Pensions Regulator requirements, identifying regulations requiring statutory guidance and the drafting of such guidance, and the potential benefits of further increasing the level of separation between the host authority and scheme manager role.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the changes highlighted within the report and request the three Scheme Advisory Board projects be included in future updates.

12.

Pension Fund Risk Register

A report presents the current Risk Register for the Wiltshire Pension Fund for review by the Board.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Pensions Administration and Relations updated he had decreased one risk in the Fund’s Risk Register, PEN023 ‘Resources of Officers and Members to meet the expansion of business items’ since a Fund Governance and Performance Manager was now in post to support the Committee and the Board. Two high risks remained: PEN012 ‘Over-reliance on key officers’, due to Treasurer leaving the Fund in May 2018, and PEN020: ‘Pooling of LGPS assets’ due to the resource required to produce the accounts and support Brunel Pension Partnership.

 

In respect of PEN021, it was noted the Risk Register should be updated to reflect the latest review date. It was also requested PEN019 be updated to reflect the establishment of the LPB.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the Risk Register and request PEN021 and PEN019 be updated as detailed above.

13.

Administration Key Performance Indicators

A report presents the Fund’s administration Key Performance Indicators for consideration.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

An update was provided from the Head of Pensions Administration and Relations on the latest administrative KPIs for members to consider. The number of refund of contributions and leavers to deferred status processed within target time had fallen, this was due to the Fund processing a high number of backlog cases, therefore affecting the short-term performance indicator.  It was however noted that performance on the active to retirement metric was down and improvement was need, therefore additional resources was to be deployed to these areas. The Head of Pensions advised he planned to develop the methodology for KPIs to provide more detail on the cause of delays by the October 2018 report, and would then progress work to link KPIs to statutory time limit requirements.

 

In response to questions, it was confirmed the Fund aspired to compare its KPIs against other funds, however this would not be a simple comparison as funds used different measures. The Chairman suggested CIPFA should be requested to update their guidance. Officers confirmed the team working to support key tasks were trained to complete this specialist work and there was a good level of resilience within the service.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the Fund’s performance against Key Performance Indicators and the improvement work taking place.

14.

Review of the LPB Code of Conduct and Conflict of Interest Policy

A report proposing a renewal of the above policy is presented for the Board to consider.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Board was presented with its Code of Conduct and Conflict of Interest Policy which was due to be reviewed. No changes were proposed other than to review the document bi-annually instead.

 

Resolved:

 

To endorse the Code of Conduct and Conflict of Interest Policy Guidelines to the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee, subject to an amendment that these guidelines will be reviewed and approved by the Committee at least every two years, or upon any material changes to the Regulations, relevant legislation and scheme guidance.

15.

Governance Compliance Statement

A report presents the current Governance Compliance Statement for comment, prior to consideration by the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Board was presented with the Fund’s Governance Compliance Statement for review. It was suggested that information on the delegation of asset management to Brunel Pension Partnership be included, and also a link to the LPB Terms of Reference. Cllr Richard Britton suggested there was a requirement for the Pension Fund Committee to report into the Council’s Audit Committee and recommended clarity on this matter be sought prior to final agreement of the Governance Compliance Statement.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the Governance Compliance Statement and make the following recommendations to officers:

 

·       That section 1A be updated to reflect the delegation of asset management to Brunel Pension Partnership

·       That a hyperlink be added to the Board’s Terms of Reference.

·       In section Fc) TPR requirements be added at the end

 

To request that officers seek clarity on any requirement for the Pension Fund Committee to report into the Audit Committee, prior to consideration of the Governance Compliance Statement by the Committee.

16.

How did the Board do?

The Chairman will lead a discussion on how the meeting went and request feedback on how the Board could be developed, and for members to feedback any relevant updates.  

Minutes:

Members commented they were satisfied with the workplan of the Board.

17.

Urgent items

Any other items of business which, in the opinion of the Chairman, should be considered as a matter of urgency. Urgent items of a confidential nature may be considered under Part II of this agenda.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.

18.

Date of next meeting and Forward Plan

The next meeting of the Board will be held on 18 April 2018 other future dates can be found here.

 

Minutes:

It was noted the next meeting was planned for 18 April 2018, subject to there being sufficient business. An updated Forward Look would be presented to the next meeting.

19.

Exclusion of the Public

To consider passing the following resolution:

 

To agree that in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 to exclude the public from the meeting for the business specified in Item Numbers 20-22 because it is likely that if members of the public were present there would be  ...  view the full agenda text for item 19.

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

That in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972 to exclude the public from the meeting for the business specified in Minutes Numbers 20-22 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 I of Schedule 12A to the Act and the public interest in withholding the information outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information to the public.

20.

Brunel Pension Partnership Update

A verbal update on the progress of the Brunel Pension Partnership implementation will be provided by the Interim Investment Manager. 

Minutes:

The Interim Investment Manager updated on the progress of implementing asset pooling and minutes from the last meeting of Brunel Oversight Board were attached to the agenda.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the update on the progress of Brunel Pension Partnership

21.

Minutes and Key Decisions of the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee and Investment Sub Committee

To consider the Part 2 (Confidential) minutes, and any recommendations arising, from the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee and Investment Sub Committee meetings held on 23 November 2017 and 21 February 2018. A verbal update of the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee meeting held on 15 March 2018 will also be provided.  ...  view the full agenda text for item 21.

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

To note the confidential update from the Wiltshire Pension Fund Committee, Investment Sub Committee and Brunel Oversight Board

22.

Minutes

To confirm the Part 2 (confidential) minutes of the meeting held on 18 October 2017.

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

To confirm the Part 2 minutes from 18 October 2017.

 

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