NEWS RELEASE: ONE Investment Launches first Joint Investment Board for Municipalities in Ontario

May 19, 2020

(TORONTO) — Today’s launch of ONE Investment’s Joint Investment Board – the first of its kind in Ontario – ushers in a new era for municipalities who want to build more diverse investment portfolios to build stronger communities. 

The board will manage investments for member municipalities under new provincial rules for the Prudent Investor Standard. The rule allows municipal governments, just like pension plans and trusts, to invest in any security that is prudent for their situation.

Municipalities have been limited to investing only in a provincially approved “legal list” of investments. This includes some bonds and money market funds, with securities limited to Canadian firms, which make up only 3% of worldwide securities.

“Building a more diverse portfolio is much better for managing risk and improving returns. It means you also have more flexibility to respond to changing financial markets, which has never been more relevant,” said Judy Dezell, Co-President/CEO of ONE Investment. “It was important to create a way for any municipality to take part and benefit from these powers.”

The City of Kenora, District Municipality of Muskoka and Towns of Bracebridge, Huntsville, Innisfil, and Whitby have come together as founding municipalities of the new Joint Investment Board formed by ONE Investment. 

“By working with other municipalities and ONE’s investment experts, municipalities can navigate these waters with a great deal of support,” said Donna Herridge, ONE Investment Co-President/CEO and Executive Director of the Municipal Finance Officers’ Association (MFOA). “There is a wealth of investment experience between the Joint Investment Board and ONE’s advisory team of experts.”

The seven-member JIB convened for its inaugural meeting today. It is currently made up of one treasurer from a founding municipality and six professionals with a mix of experience in the municipal sector and the investment industry, including global markets and pensions. Meet the members of the Joint Investment Board.

“Our role as an independent board is to make wise and prudent investments on behalf of municipalities,” said Bill Hughes, who was elected Chair of the ONE Joint Investment Board. “We provide every participating municipality with its own tailor-made investment plan carefully designed to achieve its investment objectives.”

ONE Investment has been serving municipalities for 25 years, combining municipal investments to achieve economies of scale, reduce management fees and improve returns. It is now a not-for-profit formed by the municipal sector, including the Local Authority Services (LAS) and CHUMS. LAS is the business services arm of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO). CHUMS is a subsidiary of MFOA.

“Unlike most financial institutions, ONE is a not-for-profit. This is all about municipal governments coming together to do more for their communities,” Jamie McGarvey, President of AMO. “As municipalities try to do more with less, a well-planned investment strategy can help save for long-term projects.”
 

About ONE

Currently ONE manages about $2 billion in municipal investments under the existing “legal list” system. The program has a proven track record of providing competitive returns through products that comply with provincial regulations. The Prudent Investor Standard is now another choice for municipalities to achieve their goals. ONE Investment continues to operate funds under the Legal List. 
 

Quotes from Founding Municipalities 
 

Town of Bracebridge
“All municipalities deserve the opportunity to generate as much return as we can on our existing tax dollars. We believe ONE is the right fit for us based on our experience with the program over the years. They understand the municipal sector. We believe in their strategy and leadership in the municipal community.”
-    Mayor Graydon Smith, Bracebridge
 

Town of Huntsville
“Municipalities are entrusted with taxpayer money. Our Council was interested in improving our investment returns. As a smaller municipality, trust was critical to us. Pursuing Prudent Investor with ONE Investment, and having our investments managed by industry experts on the Joint Investment Board, provides us with confidence.”
-    Julia McKenzie, Manager of Finance/  Treasurer 
 

Town of Innisfil
“Municipalities had limited choices before. By joining ONE’s Joint Investment Board, Innisfil can benefit from well-managed, diversified and flexible investments. More than ever right now, we have to make the most of what we have. Every little bit we can earn through investments is less that we have to ask from the taxpayer.”
-    Mayor Lynn Dollin, Innisfil
 

City of Kenora
 “ONE caters to municipalities and they understand our world. But they also have the expertise to support us through the complexity of investing and all the regulations. While Kenora could have done it alone, we liked the idea of working with other municipalities. Plus, it’s a great value because the investment fees are shared.”
-    Charlotte Edie, Treasurer, Kenora


District Municipality of Muskoka
“Prudent Investor offers more choice and potential for better returns. Establishing an Investment Board incurs considerable time, resources and money.  We have been investing with ONE for a long time. We value the long-standing relationship and support it provides. It made sense to work with ONE, which enables all municipalities access to Prudent Investor.“
-    Julie Stevens, Commissioner, Finance and Corporate Services
 

Town of Whitby
“ONE’s Joint Investment Board was a good fit for us. The support provided by ONE staff  in translating budgets, cash flow and asset management plans into an investment strategy is immensely helpful.”
-    Ken Nix, Commissioner of Corporate Services/Treasurer, Whitby 
 

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For more information, please contact: 
Brian Lambie
Email : lambie@redbrick.ca
Tel : 416-729-5425

Category
Prudent Investor
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