Retirement Board Profile: Quincy

Nov 2006 - Known as the “City of Presidents”, Quincy has long played a
central role in national politics, as well on the local scene in Massachusetts.
The city, which also serves as the gateway to the South
Shore, was the home of the second
and sixth US
Presidents.

Currently, Quincy
is the home of two of the Bay State’s
leading Democratic politicians and longtime Association allies, Congressman
Bill Delahunt, State Senator Michael Morrissey, and Representative Ron Mariano.

Beyond its political contributions, Quincy
is internationally known as having hosted one of the world’s premier ship
building yards. With Quincy
shipbuilding dating back to 1696, the Fore River Shipyard operated as the world
renowned shipyard until the facility was closed by General Dynamics in 1985.

“Many generations of Massachusetts
families found good paying jobs at the Quincy Shipyard. My own father was
working there in the mid-80s when the yard was closed,” recalls Association
Legislative Liaison Shawn Duhamel.

After recovering from the loss of the shipyard, the city has
experienced a renaissance of sorts in recent years. Boston
real estate development firm Intercontinental, which serves as an investment
manager for a number of Massachusetts
public retirement systems (including the City of Quincy)
recently completed a major residential development project in the heart of Quincy
center.

Strong Local Board

Chaired by retired Quincy Fire Captain George “Fred” McCray,
the Quincy Retirement Board is among the strongest of the state’s 104 local
boards. The five member board is known for its ability to come together for the
good of the system’s 1,785 retired and 1,700 active members.

McCray was first elected to the board in 1984 and has served
as its chair since 2002. A lifelong Quincy
resident, he is a past president and current treasurer of the Mass Association
of Contributory Retirement Systems (MACRS). A veteran, McCray also serves as
the commander of Legion Post 95 in Quincy.

Former Quincy Mayor Francis McAuley serves as the mayor’s
appointed representative to the Board. McAuley, who is a current Quincy
city councilor, served as the director of the State Retirement Board under
former State Treasurer Joseph Malone. He was appointed to the Quincy Board in
2003.

City Auditor Richard Fitzpatrick is the Board’s ex officio
member. Fitzpatrick, who is also a Quincy
resident, has served on the Board since 2002. He has worked for the city for
about 7 years.

Richard Crespi, a retired Quincy
police officer and Hanover
resident, is the second elected member of the Board. First elected to the Board
in 1996, Crespi has been a strong Association supporter within the city.

Serving as the Board’s fifth member is Roger Perfetti, a
retired banker from the former BayBank. Perfetti, who lives in Braintree,
is appointed by the other four members of the Board. By law, the fifth member
cannot be a member of the retirement system of which they serve, which is
designed to promote balance within the Board itself.

“We have a well rounded Board here in Quincy
that tends to work well together for the benefit of our members. Year in and
year out we have met our obligations with paying COLAs, passing veterans
benefits, and making sure our retirees have a local voice,” said McCray. “Our
staff is topnotch and does a good job of serving the membership.”

The Board’s staff is led by Executive Director Edward
Masterson, who himself is a member of the Weymouth Retirement Board and  lives in Norwell.

Marguerite Lightbourne is the Board’s deputy director. An
Abington resident, Lightbourne has worked for the Board for the past eight
years.

Rounding out the staff are Vicki Tasney and Dawn Spano.
Tasney serves as the administrative assistant and lives in Quincy.
Spano, a Braintree resident, is the
analyst for the Board.

 

Large
System

With $280 million in pension assets, the Quincy Retirement
System is one of the largest local retirement systems in Massachusetts.
On its current course, the system will be fully funded in 2028, as its funding
schedule calls for.

In 2005 the system earned 7.98% in a tough market that
remained stagnant for much of the year. Returns in 2004 topped 10.74% after
having posted a 20.21% return in 2003.

Quincy has a
well diversified investment portfolio that spreads potential market risk
amongst various asset classes. Stone Consulting is the actuary, while Meketa
Investment Group is the consultant.

State Street provides custodial services for the Board.
Michael Sacco of Northampton is the
Board’s attorney.

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