Local government pension scheme changes

28 July 2016

Government proposals to force the 89 local government pension funds to invest in infrastructure projects have prompted over 100,000 people to sign a petition calling for a debate in Parliament.

The proposals are part of the government’s attempt to create six new multi-billion pound British wealth funds. UNISON is concerned that the move could take away funds’ ability to invest in the best interests of local government pension scheme (LGPS) members.

If these changes come into force, it could mean the new funds replace government funding for roads, bridges and railways, which might not give LGPS members the best possible return, says UNISON.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:

“It’s time ministers granted a debate in Parliament on the future of the local government pension scheme. No other pension fund in the UK has this level of interference, and it’s important that MPs can scrutinise proposals affecting one of the largest schemes in the UK.

There must be proper consultation on the introduction of the new wealth funds, one that must involve unions in any investment decisions.

Ministers must allow council pension funds to make their own decisions on where they invest the current and future pension pots of care workers, teaching assistants and social workers, and allow them to get the best return.”

The text of the parliamentary petition is available here. The government’s response to the petition is available here.