Agenda and minutes

Surrey Local Firefighters' Pension Board
Monday, 14 October 2019 2.00 pm

Venue: Conference Room, Surrey Fire and Rescue Service Headquarters, Croydon Road, Reigate, Surrey, RH2 0EJ

Contact: Ben Cullimore  020 8213 2782

Items
No. Item

20/18

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

21/18

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:

    None received.

22/18

QUESTIONS AND PETITIONS

    To receive any questions or petitions.

     

    Notes:

     

    1.    The deadline for Members’ questions is 12:00pm four working days before the meeting (8 October 2019).

    2.    The deadline for public questions is seven days before the meeting (7 October 2019).

    3.    The deadline for petitions was 14 days before the meeting and none have been received.

    Minutes:

    None received.

23/18

ACTION TRACKER pdf icon PDF 54 KB

    The Board is asked to review and note its action tracker.

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Andrew Marson, Pensions Lead Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    The Pensions Lead Manager provided the Board with an update on A1/19, which was concerned with deferred members’ addresses. He explained that the tracing exercise had started and ITM were going to be appointed to assist this process. The service had identified 94 Surrey Fire Scheme members who were marked as “gone aways” and, with the rates that had been negotiated with ITM, they would be paying an estimated cost of £194 for the initial tracing exercise. The Pensions Lead Manager went on to say that there was an option to undertake further tracing if there was not an immediate match and that he would provide an update on progress at the next Board meeting.

    2.    The Chairman highlighted A2/19 and explained that the Board would be discussing the matter at the meeting.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    None.

     

    Resolved:

     

    The Board reviewed and noted its action tracker.

24/18

ADMINISTRATION UPDATE (1 JUNE 2019 - 31 AUGUST 2019) pdf icon PDF 132 KB

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

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Andrew Marson, Pensions Lead Manager

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    The Pensions Lead Manager introduced the report and explained that actions had been put in place to steady the ship due to issues in the Pensions Administration department relating to resilience and resource. They were steadily growing their resource skills across the team, and overall the Pensions Lead Manager felt the service was in a good position.

    2.    The Board was informed about fire bulletins that had been released since the last meeting. It heard that Fire Bulletin 21 had sections concerned with age discrimination and transition protection, which was being felt across all public sector pension schemes. The service would keep a close eye on those issues as they were likely to result in a significant amount of work needing to be done. Fire Bulletin 21 also discussed the need to fund a Technical Advisor to support FRAs with their understanding and management of the Firefighters’ Pension Schemes, and the Vice-Chairman confirmed that the Chief Fire Officer had received a letter and that it was now a case of confirming payment had been made.

    3.    Moving on to page 19 of the report and the updated advice on terms of reference, the Vice-Chairman explained that the draft terms of reference produced by the Firefighters’ Pensions England Scheme Advisory Board would be used to make any future changes. These would need to go to the Audit and Governance Committee for approval but would first be agreed with Board Members.

    4.    Responding to a question about the June query log on page 20, the Pensions Lead Manager explained that query logs were used as reference source if administrators had a query that fell outside their sphere of knowledge.

    5.    Regarding the administration and benchmarking review discussed in Fire Bulletin 23, the Pensions Lead Manager informed the Board that a summary of the service’s findings had been produced and would be presented at the next meeting.

    6.    The Pensions Lead Manager explained that since writing the report the requirement for FRAs to provide the name, address, telephone number and email addresses for pensions managers had been completed by the 30 September 2019 deadline. He also informed the Board that a report was produced on the scoring for the quality of the data using the pensions regulator guidance. That had progressed well and they were hoping to receive the report from Heywoods in the following weeks.

    7.    The Board heard that the service was in a good place regarding split pensions and that paragraphs 19 through 22 of the report explained what had been found based on membership data.

    8.    The Pensions Lead Manager spoke about GMP reconciliation and explained that, from the perspective of the service, the progress of the project was in a comfortable place. It was agreed that he would report back on the progress made at the next meeting.

    9.    The Board turned its attention to Annex 1, which was a full list of tasks that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24/18

25/18

RISK REGISTER pdf icon PDF 105 KB

    The Board is asked to note the content of this report, including changes to the scoring of current risks and the inclusion of additional risks, and approve the Surrey Firefighter’s Pension Scheme (FFPS) Risk Register (shown as Annex 1). The Board is further asked to make recommendations of any amendments to the Surrey FFPS Risk Register.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Ayaz Malik, Pensions Accountant Advisor

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    The Pensions Accountant Advisor explained that the risks discussed at the last Board meeting had been updated and that there was a typo in F9i which would be updated in time for the next meeting. He also informed the Board that a data improvement risk relating to the issue raised in the Administration Update would be added.

    2.    It was agreed that a red risk would be added relating to the Council’s future move from County Hall.

    3.    Referring to F19, which was concerned with the current valuation of the Firefighters’ Pension Scheme potentially having its cost ceiling breached, the Vice-Chairman asked for clarification that the issue had been reported to the Section 151 Officer and was told by the Pensions Accountant Advisor that he would check in time for the next meeting if any update needed to be added to the risk register.

     

    Actions/further information to be provided:

     

    1.    The Pensions Accountant Advisor is to amend the typo in F9i.

    2.    The Pensions Accountant Advisor is to add a risk relating to data improvement.

    3.    The Pensions Accountant Advisor is to add a risk relating to the Council’s future move from County Hall.

     

    Resolved:

     

    The Board noted the content of the report.

26/18

DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING