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BOARD ADOPTS MANDATED DIVESTMENT POLICY
The OP&F Board of Trustees has complied with Amended Substitute House Bill 562, passed by the Ohio General Assembly in June, by adopting an Iran and Sudan divestment policy at its meeting on September 24.
While the policy directs OP&F to divest its holdings in companies on a scrutinized list of those that do business in either Iran or Sudan, it also includes a heavy emphasis on the Board’s fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of its membership. OP&F will examine companies on the list and divest the holdings only if a clear and documented choice for a better investment opportunity exists.
The policy conforms to the mandate spelled out in HB 562, and has an effective date of October 22, 2008.
OP&F ‘S MID-CAREER SEMINAR TO FOCUS ON PREPARING FOR RETIREMENT
OP&F will sponsor a mid-career seminar on November 6 in Columbus for its members who have between 10 and 15 years of service. The seminar will examine topics important to those who are preparing for a secure retirement and cover topics such as taxes, estate planning and investments. Invitations for this year’s event have been mailed to OP&F members eligible to attend.
DIVERSIFICATION, LONG-TERM STRATEGIES ENABLE PENSIONS TO WEATHER MARKET CONDITIONS
National organizations representing the nation’s largest public pension funds have announced that state and local retirement systems remain sound amid the current downturn in financial markets and retirement benefits of the nation’s teachers, firefighters, police officers and other public workers remain safe and secure.
“Public pension funds are intentionally designed to withstand market fluctuations – even ups and downs as dramatic as those in recent days and in years past,” said Terry Slattery, president of the National Association of State Retirement Administrators (NASRA) and executive director of New Mexico PERA. “Retirement benefits for the nation’s public workforce are safe and secure because they are highly diversified and invested with a focus on the long-term,” he said.
NOVEMBER BOARD MEETING DATE CHANGED
The November 2008 Board of Trustees meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 25. The meeting originally scheduled for November 23 at 9 a.m. will now take place following the disability appeals hearings (at approximately 3:30 p.m.). Committee meetings of the Board of Trustees will take place as scheduled on Monday, November 24.
BOARD OF TRUSTEE COMMITEE NOTES
(Actions approved by the Board are listed separately)
ADMINISTRATION/AUDIT: The Committee received its monthly update from the Information Services Department on a variety of projects, including the Direct Deposit initiative, employer web self-service, imaging, a request for proposal on off-site storage and a request for information on an integrated financial management system. The Internal Auditor informed the committee about the completion of the procurement card audit and of ethics training for OP&F staff. The Committee also discussed OP&F’s process for posting contributions to members’ DROP accounts online.
DISABILITY: In addition to the scheduled disability hearings and reviews, the Disability Committee was reminded of the Member Agent Training Seminar taking place on September 24. The Committee also was notified that approximately 50 certification forms had been received in response to a mailing concerning additions to the list of prohibited employment positions for disability benefit recipients. The Committee also discussed when Independent Medical Exam reports may be provided to member’s agents.
HEALTH CARE: The Committee/Board of Trustees received an update on long term care coverage and also was provided with an analysis on the health care costs per covered life. UnitedHealthcare was present at the meeting and provided updates on several issues.
BENEFITS: The Committee reviewed information regarding the Houston Firefighters’ Post-Retirement Option Plan (PROP). The Committee was also given an update on the status of issues with Violet Township and Beavercreek.
INVESTMENT: In addition to the monthly portfolio update, the Committee/Board of Trustees received the 2nd Quarter Real Estate Performance Review, the Private Markets Review, the Semi-Annual Proxy Voting Report and the 2nd Quarter Net of Fees Performance Report.
At its September 24, 2008 meeting, the OP&F Board of Trustees passed the following motions:
Adopted the Iran and Sudan Divestment Policy in the form presented to the Board on September 23, 2008 (Investment Committee).
Accepted the rating recommendations of staff for Mellon Capital and Lehman Brothers Asset Management, as outlined in Investment Staff’s memos to the Board dated September 23, 2008 (Investment Committee).
Approved the awards for the Initial Determination Hearings (IDH) for 14 members as identified in the IDH list presented to the Board on September 22, 2008. Member #14 is postponed for re-examination (Disability Committee).
Approved the awards for the appeal hearings for the four members identified in the disability appeals list presented to the Board on September 23, 2008, made no change in the grant for the member identified as member #4, member #7 is postponed for re-examination and disability benefits are denied for member #6 (Disability Committee).
Announced the determinations for the Death Fund Benefit for applicants identified (Disability Committee).
Waived the mandatory medical evaluation and filing of annual earnings statements for future years for those members identified in the disability reporting waivers list presented to the Board on September 22, 2008, in accordance with the Policy of Waiver of Earnings Statement and Medical Evaluations (Disability Committee).
Approved the Administration/Audit Committee’s travel recommendation, as presented and discussed on September 23, 2008 (Administration/Audit Committee).
Authorizes the settlement with PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP, relating to the pending case styled In re American International Group, Inc., Securities Litigation in the form presented on September 23, 2008.