"Service to IMRF participants demands a special sensitivity
to the qualities of justice, courage, honesty, equity, competence and
Forms of conduct permissible for those acting at arms length should
be forbidden to trustees and staff bound by fiduciary ties. A trustee
or staff member is held to something stricter than the morals of the
market place. Not honesty alone but fine, exacting observance of honesty
is the standard of behavior. Undivided loyalty without disintegrating
erosion of particular exceptions to the interests of participants is
what is required.
Good faith requires that personal biases be cast aside and the objectivity
regarding plan participants and their beneficiaries be uppermost in
the conduct of the trustee and staff. Good faith requires that the
trustees and staff have understanding, experience, and the ability
to appreciate the nature of the decisions that are required. Trustees
and staff are required to exercise care, skill and diligence.
Recognizing that others may lack the political
courage and willingness to make tough decisions and avoid making
pension assets vulnerable, public pension trustees and staff must
be ever vigilant to protect against erosion of public pension fund
assets. They must insist on funding levels, from whatever source,
that guarantee the employer’s
promise of security and efficient administration of investments and
adequate funding levels.
Rule 6.01 Trustees and staff must protect the retirement fund
by complying with every provision of the trust document as created
by the Illinois Pension Code.
Trustees and staff shall protect IMRF. In carrying out this mandate,
trustees and staff are held to the highest standards of fiduciary conduct.
A practical application of a protection duty requires that trustees
and staff meet the responsibility to maintain the terms of the trust
as spelled out in the statute.