Board statement on publication of Phase III report
The Phase III Report builds on the recommendations agreed in 2019 with further input from a range of scheme stakeholders.
The agreed Action Plan comprises;
- Those matters that would fall to MHCLG to implement, either by amending scheme regulations or producing statutory guidance
- Those matters that would fall to the Board and other bodies to implement - subject to the actions in 1 being taken by MHCLG - and
- Actions to identify and promote existing best practice that the Board can take forward regardless of the outcome of the above.
The Board also agreed that in taking this work forward it would follow the practice adopted in preparing the guide on the new employer flexibilities by fully involving members of its committees, scheme practitioners and other key stakeholders.
Commenting on the report and action plan, Councillor Roger Phillips, Chair, said “We have reached another critical stage in this key area of work to further improve the high standards of governance and administration of the scheme on a consistent and measured basis that will better match the standards expected by the Pensions Regulator.
We must now wait to see how MHCLG responds to the Board’s proposal but we very much hope for a positive response and look forward to working alongside LGPS colleagues and those at MHCLG to progress this work. I should also take the opportunity to thank the project team at Hymans Robertson and everybody who contributed to this work for their support and resolve over the duration of the project, particularly during the COVID emergency.”
Background to Phases I to III
The Phase I to III Timeline page (see menu on the right of this page) shows how the project developed from April 2019 to the publication of the Phase III report in February 2021.
The origins of the good governance project can be traced back to the Shadow Scheme Board that was established in 2012 to assist in the design of the new 2014 scheme. The then Board agreed to consult on proposals to separate the pensions function from administering authorities to resolve the perceived conflict of interest of elected members acting in the best interest of their local authority rather than scheme members.
The separation project was put on hold while asset pooling was in its initial stages in 2015. However, in June 2018 the Scheme Advisory Board agreed to its re-commencement as the good governance project. The objective was to identify both the issues deriving from the current scheme administrative arrangements and the potential benefits of further increasing the level of separation between host authority and the scheme manager role.
Following a procurement exercise the Board appointed Hymans Robertson in January 2019 to examine the effectiveness of current LGPS governance models and to consider alternatives or enhancements to existing models which can strengthen LGPS governance going forward.