Investment Policy Statement (IPS)
VPIC’s IPS is designed to clearly communicate the investment policy, processes, and philosophy of the Commission. Pension fund investments are made in full accordance with the Policy and all applicable State and federal laws and regulations. The IPS is reviewed annually by the Governance Committee who recommends amendments to the Commission for their consideration as needed. Investment Guidelines for each of the VPIC’s investment managers are included in the contractual agreement and are available upon request.
Proxy Voting Policies
VPIC communicates with company management through several shareholder tools. One is proxy voting, which allows an equity shareholder of a company to vote on resolutions pertinent to the operations of the firm without being in physical attendance at the annual general meeting of the company. The VPIC votes its proxies in line with its International Proxy Voting Policy and Domestic Proxy Voting Policy, respectively. Segal Marco, VPIC’s proxy voting administrator, evaluates the policies annually with the VPIC Proxy & ESG Committee who makes recommendations for adoption to the Commission regarding amendments to the policies.
Operating, Standards of Conduct, and Education Policy
VPIC outlines its authority, procedures, and delegation oversight within it’s Operation Policy. The Standards of Conduct outlines how the Commissioners must conduct themselves to ensure high ethical and moral standards both professionally and personally to maintain public confidence in the integrity of the decisions of the Commission. The Commission also has established an Education policy to promote the VPIC members’ ability to achieve proficiencies essential to the prudent investment of the retirement systems’ assets.
Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) Policy
The Commission adopted an ESG policy to set forth how it would apply ESG considerations into the management of the retirement assets and exercise its shareholder rights. The VPIC recognizes that ESG issues are among core factors when assessing the risks and opportunities of an investment and should be fully integrated into the investment process by the Commission and its managers.
Carbon Reduction & Mitigation Policy
The Commission adopted this policy to act as a guide for VPIC's response to external and internal initiatives to achieve carbon reduction goals.
Policy on Investments in Terrorist or Genocide Linked Countries
The Commission adopted the policy on November 29, 2006 to ensure investments were being made in accordance with the standard of care established by the prudent investor rule under 9 V.S.A. Chapter 147. The policy ensures no retirement system assets are invested in securities issued by nations identified as State Sponsors of Terrorism by the US State Department.
Vermont Manager Program
To support economic and employment benefits to the State of Vermont, the Commission may consider the use of Vermont based investment managers’ services when consistent with the VPIC obligations to the retirement system members and the standard of care established by the prudent investor rule under 9 V.S.A. §147. Such investment managers must meet the criteria established within this policy.
Watch List Policy
The Commission established a Watch List policy to outline procedures for removal of an investment manager or investment vehicle from the portfolio when it is deemed no longer suitable per the VPIC responsibilities under 3 V.S.A. §523.