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New-Look LGPS for Scotland BRIEFING
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New-Look LGPS for Scotland

October 2006

The second meeting of the tri-partite Scottish Local Government Pension Advisory Group (SLOGPAG) was held on 28 September 2006. This body includes representatives from the trade unions, CoSLA and the Scottish Executive and is tasked with developing a New-Look LGPS for Scotland.

New Scheme Timetable

The key issues for discussion from the last meeting were the scope for developing a new Scottish scheme and the timescale in which to deliver it. The trade unions and CoSLA had made representations to Scottish Ministers that the proposed timetable, which broadly mirrored the English arrangements, would leave only a couple of months to develop a new Scottish scheme.

At the SLOGPAG meeting the Scottish Executive representatives indicated that the minister was responding positively to these representations. In particular he recognised the scope for developing a distinctive Scottish scheme and that this required a longer period to develop. This involves a development period up to June/July 2007 followed by the formal consultation and parliamentary stages and then a period to prepare systems etc. In practical terms this probably means implementation in early 2009. This breaks any remaining links with the English scheme timetable.

The trade unions and CoSLA welcomed this response and we have agreed to meet on 1 November to draft a revised timetable for consideration at the next SLOGPAG meeting.

Key Issues for the New-Look LGPS

CoSLA tabled a revised list of key issues that reflected our separate discussions. In addition we have added a review of pension fund governance and indicated that there may be a number of other amendments to the scheme that reflect our consultation with members (see P&I Briefing 145). Any new scheme would also have to include an equality impact assessment.

CoSLA have retained actuaries who will work up detailed costing of a final salary scheme at different accrual rates using actual Scottish fund figures. This is the essential starting point for discussing a new scheme and will give us a clearer indication of the costs involved. This should be available for our next meeting.

Other LGPS Issues

The regulations implementing the tax changes have been tabled in the Scottish Parliament for implementation on 6 October. The regulations abolishing the Rule of 85 and the more favourable Scottish transitional arrangements will be promulgated shortly with an implementation date of 1 December 2006. The judicial review was not successful as set out in the last bulletin.

The minister is still considering his approach to the proposed Discretionary Compensation Regulations. This has been the subject of consultation in England but nothing has been proposed in Scotland. There will have to be a separate Scottish consultation and we will prepare a full briefing when the minister decides how to take this issue forward.

Next Steps

The very welcome agreement on scope and timescales means we now have time to develop the Scottish LGPS.

We are planning an LGPS seminar on Wednesday 22 November 2006 in Glasgow starting at 11am and finishing at around 3pm. Details will follow and we anticipate being able to look in detail at the issues surrounding the new scheme.

For further details contact:

Dave Watson, Scottish Organiser (Policy) d.watson@unison.co.uk


Kenny MacLaren, Information Development Officer k.maclaren@unison.co.uk

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