State School and Institutional Trust Funds
The State Treasurer is responsible for managing nearly two billion dollars of long-term investments on behalf of the State School and other Institutional Trust Funds (Trust Funds). The Trust Funds stem from the State’s Enabling Act, which provided for the support of public schools and other institutions from lands granted by the federal government at statehood. Revenues derived from the sale of lands are deposited into the various beneficiary trust funds. For the State School Fund, all net revenue including land sales, mineral royalties, grazing, timber, and other revenues are invested as required by Utah’s Enabling Act.
The Trust Funds’ investments are managed to balance the short-term needs of the beneficiaries for current income with the need for long-term growth for the benefit of future beneficiaries through the use of diversified and balanced investments. Asset allocation of Trust Funds investments is based on periodic studies provided by a nationally-recognized investment consultant.
Trust Funds’ historical market values for the past ten years are shown below.
Investment Performance and Market Values Second Quarter 2015
State School Fund
The State School Fund is the single largest Trust Fund, with a balance of approximately $2.03 billion as of March 31, 2015. The interest and dividends earned by the State School Fund are distributed to schools statewide under the School LAND (Learning And Nurturing Development) Trust Program. Distributions through the LAND Trust Program are used by schools to address their most critical academic needs.
These funds are distributed directly to schools each year to support academic programs chosen by local “School Community Councils” (composed of parents, teachers and the principal from each school) and approved by each respective school’s local school board.
The State School Fund earned $40.2 million in the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014. Interest and dividends earned by the State School Fund for the past 10 years are shown below.