Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2002/2003

Date: 10 February 2003

PRESENT:
Mr D Watson
Mr M Carrick
Mr D McClarty

IN THE CHAIR:
Mr D Watson

APOLOGIES:
Mr J Dallat
Mr J Kelly

IN ATTENDANCE:
Mr T Evans, Mr E Hobson, Mr G Ballantine (GAD), Mrs K McCartney, Mr R McNeilly,

1. Minutes of 27th January meeting were accepted

2. Mr Evans confirmed that Mr Kelly had accepted the Secretary of State's invitation to remain a Trustee of the Assembly Members Pension Scheme during suspension and that he hopes to attend the next meeting.

3. The Trustees asked that the minutes should record their sympathy with Mr Arthur Doherty's family on their recent loss. The Chairman asked Mr Hobson to write to Mrs Doherty on behalf of the Trustees to convey their sincere condolences at this time.

4. MATTERS ARISING

  • Election Plan 2003
    Mr Evans informed the Trustees that draft election guidance for Members had been prepared and would be issued to Members via Party Whips in the near future. This will include advice to Members on Pension issues as well as contact details of Personnel staff who would be available to help with pension queries.

  • AVCs
    Mr Carrick inquired if there was flexibility to draw AVC benefits earlier than the AMPs pension benefits. Mr Ballantine agreed to examine the rules and provide the Personnel Office with a draft note to be issued to AVC contributors as soon as possible.

  • Visit to Westminster
    Mr Evans confirmed that he would make arrangements for the Trustees to visit Westminster in the near future and, if possible, meet with Trustees of the Westminster Pension Scheme.

5. INCREASE IN PENSION CONTRIBUTION

Mr Ballantine covered the main points, in the draft GAD valuation report, supporting the recommendation to increase Exchequer contributions from 18% to 21.3%. The Trustees agreed that in the absence of an Assembly Commission a submission recommending the estimated increase in contributions should be forwarded, from the Chairman, to the Secretary of State for approval.

 

Mr Ballantine confirmed that he would take on board the suggested amendments to his draft report and issue the final copy for approval in the near future.

6. ANY OTHER BUSINESS

  • RLAM Contract Extension
    Mr Ballantine recommended that no change in Investment Manager be made, but that the current contract be extended for a further year before a full tender exercise is undertaken. The Trustees agreed with this and Mr Evans undertook to follow the matter through with John Gibson (Head of Assembly Procurement)

  • Impact of Reduced Salaries on Members’ Pensions
    The Trustees agreed that a note, from the Chairman, along with an extract from the AMPS be issued to Party Whips to inform those Members who are not standing for re-election the implications suspension will make to their pension benefits.

7. DATE OF NEXT MEETING

It was agreed that Mr McClintock, the scheme’s Pension Advisor, should be invited to attend the meeting arranged with RLAM on 24 February 2003 to discuss the performance of the pension fund.

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