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Response to Scottish Local Government Pension Scheme Consultation

7th September 2018

Members have discussed the consultation and proposed response to a review of the structure of the Scottish Local Government Pension Scheme.

The Highland Council Pension Fund is one of eleven constituent funds of the Scottish Local Government Pension Scheme.

Highland Council holds a dual role in pension fund matters as it is an ‘administering authority', but also an employer member of the scheme. It was agreed that The Highland Council, as a participating employer, will also provide a separate response.

Members recognised the enviable position of the Fund and expressed a strong desire to retain control of the Fund in the Highlands. Pension Committee Members were willing to consider some cooperation with the other Scottish funds around investment and administration, only if it was demonstrated to be of benefit.

Chair of the Council's Pensions Committee, Councillor Richard Gale said: "The Highland Council Pension Fund is a success story and is fully funded through years of prudent investment. It is important that we look at a global mix of investment opportunities and while we don't rule out investing in Scottish infrastructure, it must be in the interest of our members and generate a return that justifies the investment.

"We cannot allow for us to lose control of our pension fund and two of the options, in particular, would see that control being taken by a centralised body leaving us with little or no influence. It would be a very attractive windfall for the Scottish Government to take over our pension fund, but the risk of failure would leave thousands of people in the Highlands and Western Isles to pick up the cost of that failure. That could be of serious detriment to the individual wellbeing of pension recipients and impact the overall economy of the Highlands."

See more details about the review at -

http://www.unison-scotland.org/2018/06/19/briefing-99-scottish-local-government-pension-scheme-review/

 

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