The goal of the investment program is to achieve a total rate of return that will allow the Foundation to respond to today’s needs and provide for long-term growth for future needs.
The Investment Committee is responsible for oversight of the Foundation’s investments and investment managers. The committee provides quarterly recommendations and reports to the Board of Directors on investment matters, including the acquisition, disposition, administration, and management of Foundation investments, and the performance of the investment managers. The committee is comprised of at least four independent financial advisers, and the Chair and Treasurer of the The Luzerne Foundation Board of Directors, and may include one or more other directors of The Foundation.
How The Luzerne Foundation Invests Funds
Permanent funds exist to provide a perpetual resource for charitable purposes. The investment objective of permanent funds is to retain (at a minimum), and when possible increase, the purchasing power of the funds while at the same time producing a reasonable return for distribution to meet current community needs.
The majority of The Luzerne Foundation funds are invested in the long-term Main Investment Pool. The Luzerne Foundation invests the assets of the Main Investment Pool to achieve high total returns, with a reasonable level of risk. The investment objective of nonpermanent funds, that is, funds that are wholly expendable over a specified period, is to preserve capital and, if possible, purchasing power over the life of the fund.
Amount Available for Grantmaking
The Luzerne Foundation has two objectives when determining the amount available for grants from permanent funds: (1) maintain the purchasing power of the funds over time, and (2) reduce volatility of distributions from year to year. The amount available for grantmaking is determined by the Foundation’s board of directors. Each year the board determines the percentage to be used to calculate the amount available for grantmaking for each of The Luzerne Foundation endowment funds. The rate is currently 4.25 percent of the fund’s average fair market value, using a 16-quarter trailing average. The amount recommended for grantmaking is indicated on your fund’s year-end financial statement and cover letter, issued in January each year. (New permanent funds need to be invested for a minimum of six months before being included in the valuation for distribution.)