Client Spotlight

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In recent years, many Arizona employers have seen daunting challenges in funding their pension obligations. However, a transformative tool emerged in 2020 during the Fifty-Fourth Legislature, Second Regular Session – Senate Bill 1354 (S.B. 1354), which paved the way for the Arizona Employers’ Pension Prefunding Plan (AEPPP), a pioneering Section 115 trust program sponsored by the Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS) Board and administered by Public Agency Retirement Services (PARS) in partnership with Vanguard and U.S. Bank. 

PARS and PSPRS have served as the major driving forces behind this initiative, which has assisted employers in proactively addressing their pension liabilities and stabilizing contribution costs. The AEPPP itself offers participating employers a structured framework to prefund their PSPRS obligations, providing stability and flexibility in pension management. The sponsor for this bill was Arizona Senator David Livingston, now a State Representative. 

PARS: The Catalyst for Positive Change in Pension Prefunding

As the trusted IRC Section 115 trust administrator, PARS played a central and pivotal role in pioneering pension prefunding trusts in Arizona, as they did in other states with over 300 local government clients using this concept. With unmatched specialization in IRC Section 115 trust management, compliance, and recordkeeping, PARS provided a level of assurance that employers’ pension assets were managed with utmost care and adhered to federal and state regulations. 

Unique Features Setting PARS Apart 

Some key features make this locally controlled PARS-PSPRS trust prudent for local governments in Arizona: 

Tailored Solutions 

PARS understands that each employer’s financial situation and pension needs are unique. As a result, the organization offers personalized solutions tailored to meet the specific requirements and goals of each employer participating in the AEPPP. 

Proactive Guidance 

PARS takes a proactive approach to support employers in navigating the intricacies of PSPRS cost and liability management using the trust program. Their team provides timely guidance and strategic insights, empowering employers to make informed decisions for long-term financial security. 

Comprehensive Support for Seamless Administration 

PARS extends comprehensive support to participating employers within the AEPPP. From the initial trust setup to ongoing administration, PARS streamlines the entire process, empowering employers to establish and maintain their pension reserve trust with ease. By entrusting the complexities of trust administration to PARS, employers gain the freedom to focus on their core responsibilities. 

Unparalleled Expertise in Prudent Investment Strategies 

One of the Section 115 trust program’s greatest strengths lies in Vanguard Institutional Advisory Services’ Pension Group and U.S Bank’s expertise in investment management. They offer employers tailored investment strategies designed exclusively for pension reserve funding. These strategies cater to employers’ risk tolerance and long-term financial goals, optimizing the growth potential of their prefunded assets versus keeping them in a Local Government Investment Pool or a county treasury pool. 

Transparency and Accountability 

Transparency and accountability are at the core of the principles in administering the AEPPP. Senate Bill 1354 emphasizes the importance of enhanced transparency, and with PARS’ support, employers benefit from local control in terms of contributions, disbursements and investment selections as well as consulting, auditing and reporting support. 

Empowering Arizona Employers 

PSPRS sponsored Senate Bill 1354 heralds a new era in pension contributions and costs management for Arizona local governments. The combined expertise of PARS, Vanguard, and U.S. Bank serving as the PSPRS designated providers gives employers seamless administration, prudent investment strategies, and enhanced transparency. 

As Arizona continues its commitment to pension sustainability, PARS’s pioneering pension prefunding trust empowers employers to secure the financial future of their workforce. Senate Bill 1354 has enabled a notable shift in pension prefunding practices for Arizona employers. PARS’ unwavering commitment to excellence and PSPRS’ role as the driving force behind the AEPPP make them the key catalysts for better pension management by bringing this new financial tool into the state’s pension landscape. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Arizona

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner who advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you.

Arizona Highway Users

As one of Arizona’s leading professional lobbying and public affairs firms, we strive to provide the best possible services in the state. One of the partnerships we’re proud of is with Arizona Highway Users (AHU). AHU works with Arizona businesses to maintain and improve road safety and mobility. We’re honored to partner with a client like AHU to continue to improve Arizona for its residents.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. was founded on the belief that integrity, tenacity, and client results should be the cornerstones of quality government relations. Businesses deserve to have their voices heard, and we’re honored to be the ones to spread their message. Read our article below to learn how we ensure Arizona Highway Users’ voice gets heard. 

Who Are Arizona Highway Users?

Arizona Highway Users advocates for improved, safe highway systems that are free of traffic and that enhance mobility. They fight for the preservation and improvement of road access to all Arizona drivers. As our population continues to see a dramatic increase, more drivers are on the road which can lead to congested travel flow. Dorn has partnered with Arizona Highway Users to ensure adequate and increased highway funding.

What Does Dorn Policy Group Do for Arizona Highway Users?

Dorn Policy Group works with all levels of government to advocate for the needs of Arizona businesses. We provide strategic counsel and issue management for Arizona Highway Users to help advance their goals and objectives. 

Other ways that we assist Arizona Highway Users:

  • We constantly monitor what is happening in government and how these issues could potentially affect their business.
  • We assist in policy making, bill drafting, public testimony, coalition building, and ordinance drafting for Arizona Highway Users to advocate for their desired outcome.
  • Unite Arizona businesses for one common goal: maintain and improve our roads to promote safety and enhanced freedom of mobility. 

These are just a few of the many services we provide to our clients. With integrity and tenacity, we provide client results that help advance important issues within all levels of government. We understand how difficult it can be to have your voice heard by governmental leaders, so we are here to advocate for you and the goals of your organization. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Will Advocate For Your Business 

Advocacy is key when it comes to getting the results your business needs for success. Arizona Highway Users is just one example of many that show how we advocate and fight for our clients to be heard by government officials. With over 60 years of combined experience, Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is a leading lobbying and public affairs firm that will partner with you to help your organization reach its next level of success. Contact us today to learn more about our services, other clients, and what we can do for you. 

Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona

Our brain is one of, if not the most critical part of our bodies. The Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona is stepping up to serve thousands of members of the disabled community and their families in Arizona. Dorn Policy Group is honored to partner with the Alliance to advocate for support from our local government officials. Read our article below to learn more about our partnership and what we are doing to help their cause. 

Who is the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona?

35 years ago, the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona was founded in Tucson by a group of parents on a mission to advocate for their pediatric and adult children with a brain injury. Today, the Alliance is a statewide organization that supports individuals with brain injuries and the experts who serve them. Their primary focus is prevention, education, and awareness. 

Additionally, they hold a 4-day camp for adult brain injury survivors called Camp Can Do. A signature program that connects survivors with nature, forms worthwhile friendships and enjoys increased independence. The camp is composed of physical and occupational therapy students serving as volunteers with the goal of helping campers gain real-world experience and promote social activity. 

COVID-19 Impacts the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted most aspects of our world, from our education and healthcare system to our businesses. The virus has touched everyone and every industry, and the Brain Injury Alliance is no exception. 

While the coronavirus is often considered a lung disease, the virus can cause issues with neuro-coupling mechanisms in the delivery of oxygen to the organs in our body. Additionally, the brain is susceptible to injury when there is oxygen deprivation and can lead to neuro-fatigue, memory issues, post-COVID strokes, and other emerging neuro-ailments. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona was unable to host their annual Brain Health Gala, which typically earns $250,000 in donations towards the organization. The nonprofit also canceled its 2020 and 2021 fundraising walk event which raises $45,000 annually towards various programs. Camp Can Do was also canceled. 

What Dorn Policy Group Did to Help the Brain Injury Alliance

Advocacy is vital for most companies, but this is especially true for nonprofit organizations. Dorn Policy Group is experienced in providing organizations like the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona with advocacy for both policies and funding.

Under our guidance and advocacy efforts, we were able to secure the Alliance with much-needed funding from the CARES Act. With this funding, the organization will use its $133,000 allotment to support the growing demand for its services during the pandemic. 

Additionally, we help each of our clients by:

  • Monitoring government-related activity that can potentially affect their organization and industry
  • Cultivating community relationships in both the public and private sectors to secure funding
  • Informing our client on existing laws and regulations, as well as proposed legislation that may hinder their operations. 

Dorn Policy Group Helps Nonprofits Move Forward

As one of the top Arizona lobbyists, we know how important it is to be noticed by key elected officials and community leaders. We are proud to assist the Brain Injury Alliance of Arizona in their initiative and look forward to their future growth.

By partnering with Dorn Policy Group, you can rest easy knowing that you have skilled advocates looking out for your best interests. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you today.

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