Agenda and minutes

Surrey Local Pension Board
Wednesday, 25 July 2018 10.00 am

Venue: County Hall, Penrhyn Road, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 2DW

Contact: Sharmina Ullah 

Items
No. Item

32/18

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTIONS

33/18

MINUTES FROM THE PREVIOUS MEETING: 23 APRIL 2018 pdf icon PDF 96 KB

34/18

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

    To receive any declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests from Members in respect of any item to be considered at the meeting.

     

    Notes:

    ·         In line with the Relevant Authorities (Disclosable Pecuniary Interests) Regulations 2012, declarations may relate to the interest of the member, or the member’s spouse or civil partner, or a person with whom the member is living as husband or wife, or a person with whom the member is living as if they were civil partners and the member is aware they have the interest.

    ·         Members need only disclose interests not currently listed on the Register of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests.

    ·         Members must notify the Monitoring Officer of any interests disclosed at the meeting so they may be added to the Register.

    ·         Members are reminded that they must not participate in any item where they have a disclosable pecuniary interest.

     

     

    Minutes:

    There were none.

35/18

QUESTIONS AND PETITIONS

    To receive any questions or petitions.

     

    Notes:

     

    1. The deadline for Member’s questions is 12.00pm four working days before the meeting (19 July 2018).

    2. The deadline for public questions is seven days before the meeting (18 July 2018)

    3. The deadline for petitions was 14 days before the meeting, and no petitions have been received.

    Minutes:

    The Board recieved no questions and petitions.

36/18

LOCAL PENSION BOARD ACTION TRACKER pdf icon PDF 85 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note its action tracker and the information presented in Annex 1, Freedom of Information requests.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. The Board received a summary of responses to Freedom of Information requests provided by the Fund during the last quarter.

     

    1. Officers provided a progress update on the Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVC) arrangement, advising members that four potential candidates were being reviewed and that the Fund were exploring the best options. It was agreed that the Chairman would be briefed on the recommendations appointing one of the candidates in August and officers would report back to the Board at its next meeting in October 2018.

     

    1. It was highlighted that employer discretions would be addressed in the communications report for quarter one.

     

    1. It was noted that the Administration update report included management’s response to the 2016/17 administration audit.

     

    1. It was further noted that the Pension Service Delivery Manager provided dates as per the Board’s request indicating when outstanding actions on the administration final management action plan would be completed.

     

    1. Officers reported on annual and lifetime allowances detailing how the Pensions Team monitors these.

     

    1. The Board were informed that investment training had been offered by Goldman Sachs and dates had been circulated to members to agree.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager agreed to forward the link to the fundamentals programme to allow members to book training.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    The Pensions Service Delivery Manager to provide the link to the fundamentals programme to allow members to book training.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

37/18

LOCAL PENSION BOARD FORWARD PLAN pdf icon PDF 51 KB

    The purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note its Forward Plan.

    Minutes:

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    Members noted that one further Board meeting was scheduled for the remainder of the calendar year and suggested that the Board’s forward plan be created on a rolling basis to allow flexibility.

     

    Actions/ further  information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

38/18

PENSION FUND COMMITTEE UPDATE pdf icon PDF 161 KB

    The purpose of the report:

     

    The Pension Fund Committee met on 8 June 2018. This report provides a summary of this meeting and any resolutions made.

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report.

     

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

     

    Witnesses:

     

    John Smith, Senior Advisor

    Graham Ellwood, Vice-Chairman

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. It was noted that work was underway to address concerns with the administration and monitoring of members in danger of breaching the annual or lifetime allowances.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager explained that this was becoming a national issue, that there was a general lack of understanding from members in this area. To remedy this officers highlighted that the service were looking into ways to provide members’ education through road shows and drop-in surgeries.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager indicated that surveys would be carried out and feedback generated from the road shows could be shared with the Board.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager highlighted that the active members newsletter would include information on annual/ lifetime allowances and 50/50 schemes to promote publicising and sharing information.

     

    1. Members stressed the need for officers to capture members who were opting out due to not being able to afford contributions however were not aware of the 50/50 scheme alternative.

     

    1. To support members of the Board playing an active role, officers agreed to share the newsletter communication in draft stage.

     

    1. There was a discussion around investments and officers agreed to provide a brief note to explain the Pension Fund arrangement to members.

     

    1. The Senior Advisor clarified that the cash-flow increase was a result of some employers paying the deficit contribution at year end.

     

    1. The Board were notified that the Director of Finance had left the Council on 6 July 2018 and that an interim Director had been appointed.

     

    1. Members referred to the Pension Fund Business Plan 2017/18: Outturn report and queried why some outcomes were referenced as ‘partially achieved’. Officers clarified that these outcomes were a work in progress and were yet to be completed.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    Officers to provide the Board with a draft copy of the Active Members Newsletter for comment before its publication in August.

     

    The Board to receive a briefing note on investments explaining the Pension Fund arrangement.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

39/18

ADMINISTRATION PERFORMANCE REPORT: 1 APRIL 2018 TO 30 JUNE 2018 pdf icon PDF 138 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report and make recommendations to the Pension Fund Committee if appropriate.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Clare Chamber, Pensions Service Delivery Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. It was reported that various initiatives were being developed in order to improve the service and the level of service to customers.

     

    1. The Board noted that a recruitment process was underway to fill resource gaps in the service.

     

    1. It was highlighted that an employer’s issue log would be implemented to support the processing of employer data issues.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager informed the Board that a Customer & Service Improvement Officer had been recruited to review and explore options to make current processes more efficient. 

     

    1. Members raised concerns regarding the impact of recent staff turnover and questioned how resilience could be improved in the service. The Board were advised that six vacancies were available in the service and that pay grades were being reviewed/converted to balance volume of work and handling across the team.

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager noted members’ requests to prioritise death cases as performance levels were below tolerable.

     

    1. Members queried the robotic process automation and when the service expected to see this go live. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager informed the Board that the automated solution was a work in progress and assured members an update on the development could be provided at a later date.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    None

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report and no recommendations were put forward to the Pension Fund Committee.

     

40/18

ADMINISTRATION UPDATE: 1 APRIL 2018 TO JUNE 2018 pdf icon PDF 120 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report and make recommendations if any further action is required.

     

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Clare Chambers, Pensions Service Delivery Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. The Pensions Service Delivery Manager introduced the report by informing members that an Annual Data Cleanse would take place in autumn 2018 in order to prepare for the next triennial Valuation due to take place in 2019. It was highlighted that the cleanse would help identify missing data and/or errors, flagging any discrepancies like salary and member details.

     

    General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR)

     

    1. In accordance with new legislation regarding GDPR, it was reported that the Pension Section produced a privacy statement made available on its website and in an effort to publicise this information members would be drawn to it through annual benefit statements that would be dispatched in August 2018.

     

    Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) Reconciliation

     

    1. It was noted that the GMP Reconciliation process was in the final stages. Members requested to receive statistics on the analysis of data which would be provided by the supplier at the end of July 2018.

     

    Annual Benefit Statements

     

    1. It was reported that 11 scheme employers had yet to return their End of Year Data submission.

     

    1. Members were informed that 23,500 annual benefit statements were published on the member portal and all active statements would be dispatched by 24 August 2018.

     

    1. It was advised that the final dispatch date was purposely scheduled close to the statutory deadline (31 August 2018) to accommodate for late data.

     

    1. The Pension Service Delivery manager agreed to share annual benefit statement templates with the Board.

     

    1. The Board noted that Call Credit had been employed recently to review and check addresses.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    The Board to receive;

     

    a)    statistics on the number of queries identified by the GMP reconciliation process.

     

    b)    annual benefit statement templates.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report and made no further recommendations.

41/18

REVIEW OF INTERNAL DISPUTE RESOLUTION CASES IN 2018/19: QUARTER ONE pdf icon PDF 112 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report.

     

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    John Smith, Senior Advisor

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. It was highlighted that three cases were received/resolved during quarter one (2018/19);

     

                          I.        One stage 2 determination was made in respect of an appeal received at the end of the previous quarter,

                        II.        One appeal to the Pensions Ombudsman  was received and

                       III.        One determination was received from the Pensions Ombudsman relating to a separate case.

     

    Actions/ further information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

42/18

CUSTOMER COMPLAINTS REPORT: QUARTER 1 pdf icon PDF 105 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report and Annex and make recommendations if any further action is required.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None.

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Clare Chambers, Pensions Service Delivery Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. Members noted an error in the report, it was highlighted that the highest subject of complaints received was for service delay (42%) and lack of communication (33%) however this did not correspond with the statistics attached as annex 1.

     

    1. The Board commended the low amount of complaints considering the high volume of members.

     

    1. The trade union representative in attendance also commended the work of the Helpdesk, having received positive feedback in this area.

     

    1. The Board agreed it would be useful to receive data from the Helpdesk to review top issues.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    The Board to receive complaints data from the Helpdesk outlining top issues.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of the report and annex.

     

43/18

COMMUNICATIONS UPDATE pdf icon PDF 113 KB

    The Purpose of the report:

     

    The Board to note the content of this report.

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Clare Chambers, Pensions Service Delivery Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. It was reported that the service had prepared a draft discretion policy to roll out to employers with a tutorial at the end of July 2018 to persuade employers to publish discretions.

     

    1. Members supported the exercise and suggested that employer discretions should be covered as a topic in the Pension Fund AGM in November 2018.

     

    1. It was noted that the service were also rolling out support for Surrey Pension Scheme employers with internal disputes resolution procedure determinations.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    None

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

44/18

CYBER SECURITY pdf icon PDF 140 KB

45/18

RISK REGISTERS 2018/19: QUARTER 1 pdf icon PDF 118 KB

    The purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report and the Fund Risk Register (shown as Annex 1) and Administration Risk Register (shown as Annex 2) and make recommendations to the Pension Fund Committee (Committee) if required.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    John Smith, Senior Advisor

    Clare Chambers, Pensions Service Delivery Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. Officers summarised changes made to existing risks in the Fund Risk Register requested by the Board in a meeting of 23 April 2018.

     

    1. The Board noted the new risk identified due to the change in Section 151 Officer.

     

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    Officers to update comments for A12 in the Administration Risk Register to highlight the further progress made with the GMP reconciliation.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report, the Fund Risk Register and Administration Risk Register.

     

46/18

LOCAL PENSION BOARD ANNUAL REPORT

    The Local Pension Board Annual Report will be tabled at the meeting.

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    Ayaz Malik, Pensions Accountant Advisor

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. Members received a copy of the Local Pension Board Annual report (attached to the minutes as Annex 1) and informed members that it would be presented to the Pension Fund Committee at its meeting on 14 September 2018.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    None

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

47/18

TRAINING BULLETIN: QUARTER 1 pdf icon PDF 120 KB

    The purpose of the report:

     

    This paper presents an outline of recent developments in pensions and it is intendedhelp board members develop a broader understanding of the issues.

     

    Minutes:

    Declarations of interest:

     

    None

     

    Witnesses:

     

    John Smith, Senior Advisor

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. There was a discussion around recent developments in pensions and the Board noted key changes in the 2018 amendment regulations and AVCs.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

48/18

PRE-VALUATION PROJECT PLAN

    The purpose of the report:

     

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Declarations of Interest:

     

    None.

     

    Witnesses:

     

    John Smith, Senior Advisor

    Ayaz Malik, Pensions Account Advisor

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. It was noted that the Fund actuary, Hymans Robertson, carried out the triennial valuation of the Fund’s assets and liabilities. The primary and secondary rates for all employers in the Fund were derived from this evaluation.

     

    1. It was further noted that the next triennial valuation was scheduled for 31 March 2019 (effective 1 April 2020).

     

    1. It was reported that the project timeline for the next valuation ran for approximately one year from June 2018 to June 2019. The Board were presented with a draft project plan, attached as Annex 1 to the submitted report.

     

    1. Officers clarified that the reference ‘HEAT’ mentioned in the report referred to ‘Hymans Employer Asset Tracker’.

     

    1. It was highlighted that the purpose of the project plan was to track changes and support the production of accurate results.

     

    1. Officers assured the Board that regular updates would be provided on the progress of the valuation.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Board noted the content of this report.

     

49/18

EXCLUSION OF THE PUBLIC

    Recommendation: That under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information under the relevant paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.

     

     

    PART TWO – IN PRIVATE

     

    Minutes:

    RESOLVED: That under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information under the relevant paragraphs of part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.

50/18

BORDER TO COAST UPDATE

51/18

PUBLICITY OF PART 2 ITEMS

    To consider whether the item considered under Part 2 of the agenda should be made available to the Press and public.

     

    Minutes:

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    The Board agreed that Item 18, the Pre-valuation Project Plan which was published as Part 2 Private could be made available to the public as there was no disclosure of exempt information (attached as Annex 1). Members of the public were also invited to stay for this item.

     

    RESOLVED: The Board agreed not to disclose the information relating to the Part 2 item, Border to Coast update as it was commercially sensitive.

52/18

DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING