Agenda and minutes

HFRA Hampshire Firefighters' Pension Board - Tuesday, 14th November, 2017 2.00 pm

Venue: Room C - HFRS HQ, Eastleigh. View directions

Contact: Email: members.services@hants.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

10.

Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence received.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Alex Rhodes.

11.

Declarations of Interest

To enable Members to disclose to the meeting any disclosable pecuniary interest they may have in any matter on the agenda for the meeting, where that interest is not already entered in the Authority’s register of interests, and any other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests in any such matter that Members may wish to disclose.

 

Minutes:

Members were mindful of their duty to disclose at the meeting any disclosable pecuniary interest they had in any matter on the agenda for the meeting, where that interest was not already entered in the Authority’s register of interests, and their ability to disclose any other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests in any such matter that they might have wished to disclose.

 

In relation to Item 6, Richard North declared a non-pecuniary interest for the training allowances update.

12.

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 59 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting.

Minutes:

The minutes of the last meeting were agreed and signed by the Chairman.

13.

Deputations

Pursuant to Standing Order 19, to receive any deputations to this meeting.

 

Minutes:

There were no deputations.

14.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive any announcements the Chairman may wish to make.

Minutes:

The Chairman highlighted the recent presentation to the Board from the Local Pension Partnership, and it was noted that this would be discussed further as part of the Fire Pension Board Status report (Item 6 on the agenda).  

15.

Fire Pension Board Status Report pdf icon PDF 163 KB

To receive a report from the Chief Financial Officer providing an update on the development of key items.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Pension Board received a report from the Chief Financial Officer regarding ongoing issues (Item 6 in the Minute Book).

 

The report was introduced and Officers led Members through the report highlighting the development of key items.  The position regarding transitional deferment with regard to auto enrolment was explained.  Members noted that clarification was being sought by the LGA in relation to the position of a transitional employee who was not an eligible jobholder on 1 October 2017, but becoming such at a later date, and the possibility of backdated pension membership.  It was heard that this position would be closely monitored by Officers going forward, and the necessary communications would be implemented.

 

Paragraphs 7-10 of the report set out the position regarding Hampshire Fire and Rescue Authority (HFRA) new recruits retaining membership of their existing pension scheme following transfer from another Fire Rescue Authority (FRA).  Members heard that information regarding this was included in the new recruit induction process for HFRA new recruits, and processes were now in place to enable the Integrated Business Centre (IBC) Recruitment Team to manually send pension membership option forms to new recruits for completion .  Members discussed the benefits of the pension scheme, and heard that as a result of active promotion and communication, the number of HFRA Local Government Pension Scheme Members signing up to receive their annual pension benefit statement online had increased from 13% to 25%.

 

The position regarding other key issues including Supreme Court Judgements and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was explained.  Members were content that the approach as set out in paragraphs 12-15 of the report, in relation to co-habiting partners be approved, and noted that the potentially affected cohort would be very small.  The forthcoming introduction of new legislation from the GDPR was explained and it was heard that the Chief Financial Officer was working closely with the County Council as the impact of the new legislation would be far reaching.  It was noted that a privacy statement would be included on pension forms as an immediate action.

 

Members discussed the opt out position between 2013/14 and 2017/18, as detailed in Appendix B of the report.  There were some concerns over the high number of opt outs for whole-time new joiners in 2016/17 which was detailed as 25, compared to 13 in 2017/18 and Officers would re-check these figures.  Members highlighted that it would be useful in future reports to include comparison figures of the number of opt in and opt outs to the pension scheme, year by year, and also a breakdown of figures by gender.  A discussion ensued about gathering information to ascertain reasons for opting out, and it was noted that this could be done at the time of opting out.  It was felt that it was important to also highlight the significance of employer contributions to employees at the time of opting out.  In answer to a Member query, Officers would look into whether the employer would receive a refund for the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.