Business Procedures Manual

Essential business procedural components for University System of Georgia institutions.

9.1 Banking

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

In accordance with Section 7.5 of the Board of Regents (BOR) Policy Manual, this section provides guidelines and instructions that USG institutions must follow when requesting banking services, including opening domestic and international accounts, adding or updating services, negotiating bank fees and evaluating banking relationships.

Merchant card services are not managed as part of banking services, however, they are subject to oversight by the State Depository Board (SDB) and the Office of the State Treasurer (OST). These services are discussed in more detail in Section 9.3.

(Last Modified on September 4, 2019)

The following sections of the Official Code of Georgia (OCGA) provide the primary laws governing actions of the State Depository Board, including selection of state depositories, protection of state funds on deposit, and management of banking relationships:

  • OCGA §§ 50-17-50 - Creation of the State Depository Board; membership; quorum; assignment for administrative purposes
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-51 – Meeting dates of Board, protection of state funds on deposit, prescribing cash management policies and procedures
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-52 - Contracts for interest on deposits; authority to remove deposits
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-53 – Authority to determine amounts to be deposited; deposit security required
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-54 – Monitoring financial condition of depositories; action in case of insolvency of depository
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-58 – Execution of bond by depositories
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-59 – Deposit of securities in lieu of bond
  • OCGA §§ 50-17-63 – Deposit of demand funds; investment of funds; reports; remittance of interest earned; motor fuel tax revenues

Pursuant to OCGA §§ 50-17-50, the State Depository Board (SDB) was created as the standard setting Board for State banking policy. The Office of the State Treasurer (OST) oversees and manages the policies established by the SDB.

Banking guidelines for USG institutions are established by the Board of Regents in accordance with SDB and OST banking policies (OST Bank Policy).

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

When investing funds, institutions must safeguard invested assets consistent with the fiduciary responsibility USG institutions have to citizens of the State of Georgia, while also conforming to donor intent and BOR and State policies. Per BOR policy, institutions are required to establish an investment policy, which must be reviewed and updated every two (2) years and placed on file with the BOR Treasurer.

Authority for investments of any and all funds resides exclusively with the Treasurer of the Board of Regents. When the Treasurer deems delegation of such authority appropriate, such delegation of authority must be in writing and on file in both the Treasurer’s Office and office of the chief fiscal officer of the institution.

If an institution maintains all of its’ investments in the Regents’ Pooled Investment Program and/or in the OST’s Local Government Investment Pool (LGIP), the institution would not need to develop a detailed investment policy. Investment policy guidelines for the Regents’ Pooled Investment Program are maintained at the system office, while investment policy guidelines adopted by the SDB are included on the OST website under document titled Investment Policy for the Office of the State Treasurer.

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

Pursuant to OCGA §§ 50-1-6, the acceptance of any merchant cards must be approved by the SDB. The OST has adopted the Statewide Merchant Card Services (MCS) Policy, which prescribes policies and procedures for participating in the MCS program.

The State Treasurer, as administrative officer for the SDB, shall have the authority to carry out the provisions of this policy. The State Treasurer will enter into agreements with one or more financial institutions, credit card companies, or other entities for processing merchant card service payments and accepting credit cards, charge cards, debit cards and other forms of electronic payment.

All state entities, including USG, must use the statewide agreements entered into by the OST. Any state entity wishing to use a provider outside of the statewide contract must obtain approval from the SDB. For USG institutions, if a current vendor offers merchant card services, the institution may request an exception waiver to utilize the services of that vendor. The request must be made to the BOR Treasurer, who will in turn, review request and submit to State Treasurer for SDB approval.

The MCS Policy is maintained on the OST website:
https://ost.georgia.gov

9.1.1 Treasurer’s Responsibilities

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

Section 7.5.1 of the BOR Policy Manual provides that the USG Chief Fiscal Officer (BOR Treasurer) is responsible for reviewing and approving all banking services for each institution. The BOR Treasurer has final approval authority for establishing all accounts and expansion of banking services.

The BOR Treasurer is also responsible for appointing a person or persons at each USG institution with authority to sign checks drawn on banks where funds of the respective institutions are deposited. Persons so appointed shall be authorized to sign any documents that may be required by the banks concerned.

When new bank accounts are proposed, the institution, following BOR procurement policy, will solicit bids for banking services. The President of the institution, or designee, shall review the bids. Based on competitive bid results, the President shall request the approval of the BOR Treasurer for the bank(s) desired.

OST will also review the banking services requested, focusing on pricing and solvency, and offer recommendations. Once the review of the banking service request is completed, the BOR Treasurer will make the final determination as to which provider is selected.

Once the bank is selected, the BOR Treasurer must be provided with the following information:

  • New bank name (if applicable)
  • The bank’s ABA (Federal Reserve routing) number
  • The institution’s bank account number
  • The name and number of the Federal Reserve Bank in Atlanta with whom the local bank corresponds
  • The name or names of the proposed signatories for the account

This information should reach the BOR Treasurer’s Office at least ninety (90) days before the effective date of the proposed change.

Once the bank is selected, the BOR Treasurer will notify OST and verify that such bank is a qualified state depository. If a new bank is selected, upon approval of the SDB and receipt of the State Signature Card and Depository Agreement, the new bank account will be added to the State Bank Registry.

The BOR Treasurer is also responsible for sending certified copies of the minutes of the BOR to the new bank, which advises it of corporate authority for the signers to execute checks drawn on University System funds.

Upon accomplishing the above, the old bank account must be closed as soon as all outstanding checks have cleared, since the old account is no longer the bank account of record. Any transactions clearing through the old account, other than clearing outstanding checks and transferring any remaining cash balances, are unauthorized.


9.1.2 Selection of Banks for General Operating and/or Payroll Accounts

(Last Modified on August 7, 2019)

BOR procurement policies are established in accordance with OCGA §§ 50-5-50. For USG institutions, banking services should be competitively bid every five (5) years, seeking banks which offer the best value while meeting OST guidelines. OST best practices suggest obtaining at least three (3) bids or a combination of three (3) bids and/or responses from banks declining to bid. Forms and instructions needed for the review are provided on OST’s website: https://ost.georgia.gov.

The OST requires that each bidding bank must complete and include a Bank Fee Schedule and a Bank Compensation Proposal in its Request For Proposal (RFP). Using the information provided, OST will prepare a 5 year present value cost analysis of the bids which is forwarded to the institution and the BOR Treasurer. Following the OST evaluation, the institution should select its bank from the three lowest cost providers. If the institution desires to select a different provider, the institution must provide a written explanation to the BOR Treasurer as to why the alternative bank should be selected. The BOR Treasurer will make the final determination on which bank is selected. Once final selection is made, the BOR Treasurer will provide the OST with a copy of the signed State Signature Card and Depository Agreement for accounts to be added to State Bank Registry.

As an alternative to the formal bidding process, an institution may elect to choose from banks participating in the OST Bank Program. To participate in this program, banks must acknowledge that they will follow guidelines established in OST Bank Policy and that they are subject to periodic evaluations by the OST. Since OST performs periodic evaluations to verify that participating banks are qualified to function as state depositories, general procurement requirements would be met, thus eliminating the need for formal bids. However, since bank pricing of services may vary significantly between banks in the OST Bank Program, pricing data must be considered in the bank selection process. Therefore, institutions must complete pricing templates (available from OST) on at least three (3) banks from the OST Bank Program list and submit this information along with justification to BOR Treasurer for the bank requested. BOR Treasurer will finalize selection based on information provided.

BOR “system office” bank accounts do not fall under banking selection criteria available to the institutions. System office accounts must be managed in the same manner as state agency accounts and are subject to the OST Bank Policy guidelines, which require selecting a bank from the four (4) primary banks (lowest cost providers) as identified by OST.
For additional information on OST banking requirements, visit the OST website at https://ost.georgia.gov.


9.1.3 Foreign Bank Accounts

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

All foreign bank accounts must be maintained in the name of the USG institution. Also, bank accounts can only be opened after OST has performed a pro formal of review of the financial condition of the bank. The USG institution must provide documentation verifying that the proposed bank:

(1) Is financially strong and stable;
(2) Offers security of deposits;
(3) Is convenient to the institutions location;
(4) Imposes bank fees and charges that are rational to its marketplace.

Competitive bids should be considered if multiple bank options are available. Once vetting procedures noted above have been completed and bank has been selected, the institution’s President must receive approval from BOR Treasurer before opening the account.

BOR policy, in compliance with OST requirements, provides as follows:

  • “A cap of $100,000 is set on consolidated foreign bank accounts of a USG institution’s depositories in a particular foreign bank and, in any event, shall not exceed the lower of the State Depository Board’s prescribed limit or the limit of the FDIC equivalent organization that applies to the specific USG institution in that particular country. If a foreign country does not have a deposit insurance program, lower balances may be appropriate.”

The $100,000 is an aggregate for all accounts for an institution in a particular bank. Also, as stated in the above policy excerpt, if a foreign country has a depository insurance protection program similar to FDIC, the limit must be the lower of the $100,000 or the insurance protection.

If an institution finds it necessary to open an account in a country that does not have any type of deposit protection program, the institution must contact the Board Treasurer for the account approval and a modified cap limit.


9.1.4 Placement of Cash in Time Deposits

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

As with demand accounts, the BOR Treasurer has final approval authority on all time deposits. All units of the USG placing funds in time deposits shall restrict such deposits to banks located in the state of Georgia. If time deposits are to be placed with a bank for which an institution does not have current banking relationship, competitive bid requirements are required, unless the following applies:

  • The bank is a member of the OST Bank Program, as discussed in section 9.1.3, or
  • The bank participates in the OST’s State Secure Deposit Program, whereby banks are required to pledge collateral into a multibank pledging pool.

The placement of funds in time deposits is usually associated with resources that must be converted periodically to cash to accommodate operational needs. The term of such placements should be for short periods, twenty-four (24) months or less.


9.1.5 Recording of Interest Earned on Bank Accounts

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

The following guidelines should be used to record interest earned from bank deposits:

  1. Interest earned on Cash in Bank General Operations-Demand Deposits (118100) is to be budgeted and receipted in unexpended plant funds and, thus, be used for capital outlay purposes.
  2. nterest earned on Cash in Bank-Time Deposits (119100) is to be budgeted and receipted as interest earned in the fund group that provides the resource to purchase the time deposit(s) and should be spent in accordance with intent of the fund.

Resources from restricted funds, auxiliary enterprises funds, loan funds, endowment funds, unexpended plant funds, and student activity funds, which are invested in time deposits, shall appear on the Statement of Net Assets as “Cash and Cash Equivalents”. Further, interest earned on said time deposits shall be reflected in the fund group providing the resource as “Non Operating Revenue – Investment Income.”


9.1.6 Bank Depositories/Collateral Requirements

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

All depositories, where USG funds are held in time and demand deposits, shall be collateralized in accordance with OCGA §§ 45-8-12 (dedicated collateral method) and/or OCGA §§ 45-8-13 through 45-8-13.1 (pooled collateral method).

When collateralizing under OCGA §§ 45-8-12, the depository secures the deposits of each of its public body depositories separately by either providing a surety bond in some acceptable security company qualified to do business in Georgia, and/or pledge of securities enumerated in OCGA §§ 50-17.59.

When collateralizing under OCGA §§ 45-8-13 and 45-8-13.1, the depository will provide collateral using one of two methods:

  1. Single Bank Pooled Method – The depository is required to secure deposits through a pool for collateral established by the depository and held by a custodian for the benefit of the institution.
  2. Multibank Pool Method – Each covered depository agrees to a contingent liability to cover losses sustained by a public body (depositor) caused by the default of other depositories within the multibank pool based on its pro rata share of deposits covered by the pool.

Depositories, that pledge collateral using the “dedicated collateral method”, must ensure that the aggregate of the face value of any surety bond plus the market value of securities pledged must be equal to, but not less, than 110% of the public funds being secured after deduction for deposit insurance.

Depositories pledging collateral using the single bank pooled method are required to pledge securities whereby the aggregate market value of the securities pledged is not less than 110% of the daily pool balance (after consideration for FDIC insurance coverage).

Depositories, that participate in the multibank pledging pool State’s Secure Deposit Program, shall pledge collateral per instructions from the SDB in accordance with OCGA §§ 45-8-13.1(b). Information on the Secure Deposit Program is located under Operating Policies section of Office of State Treasurer website.


9.2.1 Investment Policy

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

Institutions, which have investments outside of the Regents’ Pooled Investment Program or LGIP, must develop a written investment policy.

The investment policy must, at a minimum, contain the following items:

  1. Investment objectives - There may be several different investment objectives, depending on the type of funds to be invested and period of investment to be considered. These may include objectives that attempt to preserve the purchasing power of income and principal, maximize current income, or maximize capital values. Each investment objective should clearly state the time horizon for achieving investment objectives.
  2. Investment type - Investment must be consistent with donor intent, Regents policy and applicable federal and state laws.
  3. Asset allocation - Guidelines which outline the asset classes and subclasses that will constitute permissible areas for investment of funds. The guidelines should indicate the maximum and normal distribution of funds among the different asset classes or subclasses and the rationale for selecting these criteria. Asset allocation guidelines should also be tied to the investment objective and consider the potential risks associated with different asset allocations. The investment policy should outline the factors to be considered when an institution proposes a change in asset allocation such as during times of significant rate shift affecting the investment portfolio and instability in inflationary trends.
  4. Diversification (including interest rate risk, custodial credit risk, credit quality risk, concentration of credit risk, and foreign currency risk) – Adequate portfolio diversification is fundamental to the management of risk. The investment policy should include a diversification plan that considers the asset classes and investment products to be utilized in an attempt to achieve desired return with an acceptable level of risk. The plan should also describe how the various risk factors are addressed.
  5. Spending policy - Spending rules must be established to work in conjunction with investment objectives. Variables to be considered include the percentage of return allocated to prevent principal erosion by inflation versus the percentage to be expended currently.
  6. Monitoring – Periodic monitoring of investment results should be addressed in the investment policy.
  7. Utilization of investment managers – Criteria for selection and evaluation of performance of investment managers should be described in the investment policy. If the institution chooses to use outside investment manager(s), the following should be included:
    • Professional background and experience
    • Investment philosophy relative to the institution’s stated investment objectives;
    • Organizational structure and overall product line;
    • Control with respect to ensuring that individual managers adhere to policy objectives and guidelines;
    • Total size of managed assets;
    • Record of performance measured against appropriate benchmarks;
    • Ability to communicate results effectively and in timely fashion;

Each institution shall submit an annual report on investment performance for all investments that are outside of the Regents’ Pooled Investment Program and LGIP to the BOR Treasurer. This report must assert that investments have been made in accordance with the institution’s written investment policy.


9.2.2 Regents Pooled Investment Program

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

Units of the University System of Georgia and their affiliated organizations may participate in the Regents Pooled Investment Program. The characteristics and investment objectives of the types of pooled funds are detailed below.

Short Term Fund

The Short Term investment fund is most suited for investment of shorter term operating reserves with a time horizon of 1 year or longer that are subject to Georgia Code investment restrictions. The Fund may also be used to invest other non- appropriated operating reserves with the same time horizon.

Only USG institutions and cooperative/affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

The Fund is managed to maintain a stable net asset value with limited principal volatility, however, there is no assurance that the fund will be able to achieve this objective in all market conditions.

Investment Objectives

  1. The primary investment objective is the preservation of principal and current income consistent with permitted investments.
  2. The secondary investment objective is to provide a competitive return on the short term funds of the University Systems of Georgia participants, while providing sufficient liquidity for periodic cash needs.
  3. The portfolio will be limited to domestic fixed income only and shall be well diversified as to issuer and maturity within the scope of permitted investments.
  4. The overall credit quality of the portfolio will be at least AA.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this document.
  3. The investment manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment objectives, investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations. Generally, it is anticipated that liquidity needs will be met through maturities, portfolio structure and interest income.
  5. For comparative purposes, the portfolio will be measured against the Bloomberg Barclays Short Treasury Index and Georgia Fund One (LGIP).

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. Investments in the Fund will be limited to fixed income securities permitted for investment under Georgia Code Section50-17-63.
  2. Consistent with the above Code Sections, permitted investments shall include:
    • Bankers Acceptances;
    • US Treasury bonds, bills and notes;
    • Eligible bonds, bills and notes of counties or municipalities of the State of Georgia;
    • Eligible industrial revenue and development authority bonds created by the laws of the State of Georgia;
    • Obligations (including mortgage obligations) of subsidiary corporations authorized by the U.S. Federal Government including, but not limited to, the Federal Farm Credit Bank, the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Federal National Mortgage Association, the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, the Government National Mortgage Association; and the Tennessee Valley Authority;
    • Repurchase agreements collateralized by obligations of the U.S. Treasury and subsidiary corporations of the U.S. Federal Government (the market value of the collateral will at all times be at least 102% of the repurchase agreement investment);.
    • Obligations of U.S. public corporations of that have a market capitalization of at least $ 100 million, provided that such securities are rated A or better by at least two nationally recognized rating agencies, at the time of purchase and while held in the portfolio. If any corporate holding is downgraded below the minimum rating above, it should be sold within 90 days of the downgrade.

      1. If in the opinion of the investment manager, the position should be retained, the manager shall notify the Investment Advisor in writing of the rationale behind the recommendation and obtain approval from the Investment Advisor to retain the position. The Investment Advisor will then notify the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee of the downgrade and subsequent decision.
  3. The duration of the portfolio will range from .25 to 1.25 years, but will typically average 0.75 to 1 year.
  4. The maximum maturity (average life) of any individual holding will not exceed 3 years.
  5. For purposes of determining maturities, the next reset date will be used for floating rate securities, the put date for putable securities, the call date for securities trading on a yield-to-call basis, and the average life on securities with periodic principal payments prior to maturity such as mortgage-backed securities and asset-backed securities.
  6. The maximum exposure to obligations of U.S. public corporations will not exceed 30% of the total portfolio.

Legal Fund

The Fund is most suited for investment of donor restricted endowment funds that are subject to Georgia Code investment restrictions, as well as longer term operating reserves with a time horizon of at least 5 years.

Only USG institutions and cooperative/affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

Investment Objectives

  1. The Fund’s investment objective is safety of principal and a higher level of current income consistent with permitted investments.
  2. The portfolio will be limited to domestic fixed income only and shall be well diversified as to issuer and maturity within the scope of permitted investments.
  3. The overall character of the portfolio will be at least US Agency quality,.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this document.
  3. The investment manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment objectives, investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations.
  5. For comparative purposes, the portfolio will be measured against the Bloomberg Barclays Intermediate Government Bond Index.

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. Investments in the Fund shall be limited to fixed income securities permitted for investment under Georgia Code Section 50-17-63.
  2. Consistent with the above Code Section, permitted investments shall include:
    • Bankers Acceptances;
    • US Treasury bonds, bills and notes;
    • Eligible bonds, bills and notes of counties or municipalities of the State of Georgia;
    • Eligible industrial revenue and development authority bonds created by the laws of the State of Georgia;
    • Obligations (including mortgage obligations) of subsidiary corporations of the U.S. Federal Government, including, but not limited to, the Federal Farm Credit Bank, the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Federal National Mortgage Corporation, the Government National Mortgage Association, and the Tennessee Valley Authority.
    • Repurchase agreements collateralized by obligations of the U.S. Treasury and subsidiary corporations of the U.S. Federal Government. The market value of the collateral will at all times be at least 102% of the repurchase agreement investment.
  3. The duration of the portfolio will range from 75% to 125% of the duration of the benchmark index with an average maturity (average life) of 3 to 5 years.
  4. The maximum maturity of any individual holding will not exceed 30 years.
  5. For purposes of determining maturities, the next reset date will be used for floating rate securities, the put date for putable securities, the call date for securities trading on a yield-to-call basis, and the average life on securities with periodic principal payments prior to maturity, such as mortgage-backed securities and asset-backed securities.

Balanced Income Fund

The Balanced Income fund is designed primarily for investment of endowment and other donor restricted gifted funds that have net income distribution requirements and may not be eligible for a total return based institutional spending policy.

The Fund may also be used to invest other types of non a ppropriated funds where a more conservative asset allocation is appropriate. Such funds may include charitable gift annuities and other types of planned giving vehicles as well as non-state appropriated longer term operating reserves with a time horizon of at least five years.

Only USG institutions and cooperative/affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

Investment Objectives

  1. The Fund’s investment objective is to achieve a meaningful total rate of return with an emphasis on current income.
  2. The overall character of the portfolio should be one of above-average quality, possessing an average degree of investment risk.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to develop and implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this section
  3. The investment manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment objectives, investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations.
  5. The total equity portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Russell 3000 Index.
  6. The total fixed income portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index.
  7. The total portfolio performance will be measured against a blended benchmark comprised of 30% Russell 3000 Index and 70% Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index.

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. The portfolio’s equity allocation range shall be between 20%-40%, with a target of 30%, and shall have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments are limited to publicly domestic equities only;
    • The portfolio will be well diversified among large cap, mid cap, and small cap equity strategies;
    • The portfolio will have exposure to both growth and value equity styles, with an emphasis on dividend focused strategies.
  2. The portfolio’s fixed income allocation shall typically range between 60%-80%, with a target of 70%, and shall have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments are limited to publicly traded domestic investment grade fixed income only.
    • The portfolio will be well diversified as to issuer and maturity.
    • Average maturities will generally be of intermediate term, but may periodically emphasize shorter or longer maturities, depending on yield differentials and market conditions
    • The maximum maturity of any individual issue shall not exceed thirty (30) years at the time of purchase.
    • The average duration of the total fixed income portfolio will not exceed the duration of the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index by more than 20%.
    • The total fixed income portfolio will have an average credit quality rating of at least A.
  3. Cash reserves for scheduled distributions and other contingencies are expected to comprise the balance of the fund:
    • Cash reserves will be invested at all times in SEC registered money market funds that meet the highest NAV rating classification or other principal stable overnight investment vehicles such as U. S. Treasury collateralized repurchase agreements.
    • All cash reserve investments will have daily liquidity.

Total Return Fund

The Total Return fund most suited for investment of endowment and other donor restricted gifted funds that are eligible for a total return based on institutional spending policy.

The Fund may also be used to invest other types of non-appropriated funds where a more aggressive asset allocation is appropriate. Such funds may include charitable gift annuities and other types of planned giving vehicles as well as non-state appropriated longer term operating or board restricted funds with a time horizon of at least ten years.

Only USG institutions and cooperative/affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

Investment Objectives

  1. The Fund’s investment objective is to achieve a meaningful total rate of return with an emphasis on capital appreciation.
  2. The overall character of the portfolio should be one of above-average quality, possessing a moderate degree of investment risk.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to develop and implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this section.
  3. The investment manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations.
  5. The equity portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Russell 3000 Index.
  6. The total fixed income portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index.
  7. The total portfolio performance will be measured against a blended benchmark comprised of 70% Russell Index 3000 and 30% Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index.

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. The portfolio’s equity allocation will typically range between 60% - 80%, with a target of 70%, and shall have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments will be limited to publicly traded domestic equities only;
    • The portfolio will be well diversified among large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap equity strategies;
    • The portfolio will have exposure to both growth and value equity styles.
  2. The portfolio’s fixed income allocation shall typically range between 20%-40%, with a target of 30%, and shall have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments will be limited to publicly traded domestic investment grade fixed income only;
    • The portfolio will be well diversified as to issuer and maturity;
    • Average maturities will generally be of intermediate term, but may periodically emphasize shorter or longer maturities, depending on yield differentials and market conditions;
    • The maximum maturity of any individual issue shall not exceed thirty (30) years at the time of purchase;
    • The average duration of the portfolio will not exceed the duration of the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index by more than 20%; and
    • The total fixed income portfolio will have an average credit quality rating of at least A.
  3. Cash reserves for scheduled distributions and other contingencies are expected to comprise the balance of the Fund:
    • Cash reserves will be invested at all times in SEC registered money market funds that meet the highest NAV rating classification or other principal stable overnight investment vehicles such as U. S. Treasury collateralized repurchase agreements; and
    • All cash reserve investments will have daily liquidity.

Diversified Fund

The Fund is most suited for investment of endowment and other donor restricted gifted funds that are eligible for a total return based on institutional spending policy.

The Fund may also be used to invest other types of non-appropriated funds where a more aggressive asset allocation is appropriate. Such funds may include charitable gift annuities and other types of planned giving vehicles as well as non-state appropriated longer term operating or board restricted funds with a time horizon of at least ten years.

Only USG institutions and cooperative/affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

Investment Objectives

  1. The Fund’s investment objective is to achieve a meaningful total rate of return, with an emphasis on capital appreciation.
  2. The overall character of the portfolio should be one of above-average quality, possessing a moderate degree of investment risk.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to develop and implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this section.
  3. The Investment Manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment objectives, investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations.
  5. Performance results will be measured on an Absolute, Relative (global blended benchmarks and relevant universe) and Real (net of inflation) basis.
  6. The total equity portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the MSCI All Country World (ACWI) Index. The total domestic equity allocation of the portfolio will be compared to the Russell 3000 Index and the non-US equity allocation will be compared to the MSCI ACWI ex-US Index.
  7. The total fixed income portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index.
  8. The total portfolio will be compared to a blended index benchmark comprised of 50% Russell 3000 Index, 20% MSCI AWCI ex-US Index and 30% Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index.

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. The portfolio’s equity allocation will typically range between 60% - 80%, with a target of 70%, and have the following characteristics:
    • The portfolio will be broadly diversified among large-cap, mid-cap, and small-cap domestic equity strategies, developed international and emerging market equity strategies, and publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITs);
    • The portfolio will have exposure to both growth and value equity styles. REITs will be permitted on a tactical basis, up to a 5% limit.
    • Non-U.S. equity exposure will not exceed 25% of the total portfolio, or one-third of the total equity allocation.
  2. The portfolio’s fixed income allocation will typically range between 20%-40%, with a target of 30%, and have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments will include publicly traded investment grade fixed income, dollar-denominated global bonds, and non-dollar denominated global bonds.
    • The portfolio will be well diversified as to issuer and maturity.
    • Average maturities will generally be intermediate term, but may emphasize shorter or longer maturities, depending on yield differentials and market conditions.
    • The maximum maturity of any individual issue will not exceed thirty (30) years at the time of purchase.
    • The average duration of the total fixed income portfolio will not exceed the duration of the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index by more than 20%.
    • The total fixed income portfolio will have an average credit quality rating of at least A.
  3. Cash reserves for scheduled distributions and other contingencies are expected to comprise the balance of the Fund:
    • Cash reserves will be invested at all times in SEC registered money market funds that meet the highest NAV rating classification or other principal stable overnight investment vehicles such as U.S. Treasury collateralized repurchase agreements.
    • All cash reserve investments will have daily liquidity.

Diversified Fund for Foundations

The Fund is most suited for investment of endowment and other donor restricted gifted funds that are eligible for a total return based institutional spending policy.

The Fund may also be used to invest other types of non-appropriated funds where a more aggressive asset allocation is appropriate. Such funds may include charitable gift annuities and other types of planned giving vehicles as well as non-state appropriated longer term operating or board restricted funds with a time horizon of at least ten years.
Only USG cooperative and affiliated organizations may invest in the Fund.

The Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act (UPMIFA) and FSP FAS 117-1 require charitable organizations to account and report for donor restricted and board designated endowments in ways that are substantially different from previous guidance. It is the Fund’s policy to adhere to the statutory requirements of UPMIFA as adopted in Georgia Code.

Investment Objectives

  1. The Fund’s investment objective is to achieve a meaningful total rate of return, with an emphasis on capital appreciation.
  2. The overall character of the portfolio should be one of above-average quality, possessing a moderate degree of investment risk.

General Investment Guidelines

  1. The investment manager will give frequent and active attention to the portfolio to develop and implement the Fund’s investment strategy.
  2. The investment manager is authorized to make investment changes as deemed necessary on a discretionary basis, but only in accordance with the objectives and guidelines set forth in this document.
  3. The Investment Manager will meet regularly with the Pooled Fund Program’s Advisory Committee to review investment objectives, investment strategies and performance results.
  4. All investments utilized in the Fund will be highly liquid with readily determinable valuations.
  5. Performance results will be measured on an Absolute, Relative (global blended benchmarks and relevant universe) and Real (net of inflation) basis.
  6. The total equity portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle to the MSCI All Country World Index (ACWI). The total domestic equity allocation of the portfolio will be compared to the Russell 3000 Index and the non-U.S. equity allocation will be compared to the MSCI ACWI ex-US index.
  7. The total fixed income portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index.
  8. The alternatives portion of the portfolio will be reviewed over a full market cycle compared to the HFRX Global Hedge Index.
  9. Total portfolio performance will be compared to a blended index benchmark comprised of 45% Russell 3000 Index, 20% MSCI ACWI ex US Index, 20% Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Index and 15% HFRX Global Hedge Index.

Specific Investment Guidelines

  1. The portfolio’s equity allocation typically shall range between 40%-75%, with a target of 65%, and have the following characteristics:
    • The portfolio will be broadly diversified among large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap domestic equity strategies, developed international and emerging market equity strategies, and real estate investment trusts (REITs);
    • The portfolio will have exposure to both growth and value equity styles. REITs will be permitted on a tactical basis, up to a 5% limit.
    • Non U.S. equities will not exceed 20% of the total portfolio, or one-third of the equity allocation.
  2. The portfolio’s fixed income allocation shall typically range between 10% -40%, with a target of 20% and have the following characteristics:
    • Permitted investments will include publicly traded investment grade and high yield fixed income, dollar-and non-dollar denominated global bonds, and emerging market bonds.
    • The portfolio will be well diversified as to issuer and maturity.
    • Average maturities will generally be intermediate term, but may periodically emphasize shorter or longer maturities depending on yield differentials and market conditions.
    • The maximum maturity of any individual issue shall not exceed thirty (30) years at the time of purchase.
    • The average duration of the total fixed income portfolio will not exceed the duration of the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index by more than 20%.
    • The total fixed income portfolio will have an average credit quality rating of at least A.
  3. The Fund may utilize certain alternative asset classes to gain further diversification. A primary purpose for investing in these asset classes is to obtain return characteristics with lower correlation to traditional equity and fixed income asset classes. The alternative investment allocation typically shall range between 0% - 30%, with a target of 15%. The following alternative asset classes are permitted investments:
    • Hedge Funds – the Fund’s approach for investing in this asset class is to use liquid alternative strategy commingled funds registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940, including multi-strategy, multi-manager fund of hedge funds which provide the best access to a highly diversified pool of hedge fund strategies and managers.
    • Commodities – the return characteristics of this asset class are largely uncorrelated with stock and bond returns. Tactically, adding commodity exposure can improve diversification, lower the portfolio’s risk profile and potentially enhance return. The Fund will only invest in liquid, registered commingled funds that passively track a broad range of commodities.
  4. Cash reserves for scheduled distributions and other contingencies are expected to comprise the balance of the Fund.
    • Cash reserves will be invested at all times in SEC registered money market funds that meet the highest NAV rating classification or other principal stable overnight investment vehicles, such as U.S. Treasury collateralized repurchase agreements.

      All cash reserve investments will have daily liquidity.

9.1.7 Service on Bank Governing Boards

(Last Modified on June 13, 2019)

BOR Policy Section 7.5.1 provides that the chief business officer of each institution along with any other officer or employee, who participates in the selection of the institution’s depository (bank), are prohibited from serving on the governing boards of banks and other financial institutions, if such banks or other financial institutions have or seek a commercial relationship with that institution.

The president of an institution may serve on the governing board of a bank or financial institution that does not have a commercial relationship with the institution. However, such a bank or financial institution, will not be considered for establishment of a commercial relationship with that USG institution until the president is at least two (2) years removed from serving on the governing board.


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