Lots of folks in my state have taken for granted the positive effect of the Retirement Systems of Alabama. In my opinion, the investments in Alabama by the RSA have been very good for our state and have benefited all Alabama citizens. The decision to invest approximately 10% of RSA’s assets in Alabama over two decades has paid off extremely well.
Dr. David Bronner, Executive Director of RSA, said in the July 2012 Advisor that investing in Alabama helps investment staff members feel a personal connection to the choices they are making, because they know it will affect “their own backyard.” He reports that 90% of RSA’s investments in common stocks, international stocks, and fixed income outperformed the benchmark in each year during the last ten years.
The RSA commissioned two economic impact studies that took a look at the impact of RSA investments and the RSA itself on the State of Alabama. The studies were conducted by economists at Auburn University Montgomery and The University of Alabama. The bottom line is that RSA investments netted $28.0 billion of additional GDP for the state, $14.3 billion of earnings (payroll) for Alabamians, and 282,564 full-time equivalent jobs in the last 22 years. The studies revealed for every $1 the RSA invested in Alabama, the state gained an additional return of $1.57. RSA-owned investments in the state accounted for nearly 2% of the state’s GDP in 2007. It’s significant that RSA assets total nearly $30 billion.
A key RSA economic development engine in Alabama is the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. The Trail is the largest golf course construction project ever attempted. It’s a collection of 468 holes of championship golf on 11 different sites across Alabama. I am told by some of my buddies who are golfers that the courses are notoriously challenging. In fact, the Trail was called “some of the best public golf on Earth” by the New York Times. The courses have hosted nationally acclaimed tournaments. Dr. Bronner estimates the Golf Trail alone generates about a $300,000 a month, or $3.6 million a year, return for RSA. It is important that all the courses are located in close proximity to each other. This makes it possible for visitors to golf across the entire state.
Going hand-in-hand with the Trail is a series of world-class resorts located in Montgomery, Hoover, Mobile, Point Clear, Prattville, Opelika, and Florence, Alabama. These resorts encourage golfers – and their families – to stay, and shop, and eat, which all adds up to more dollars in the pockets of Alabama merchants and communities. The Resort Collection on the RTJ Golf Trail, as it is known, and the properties’ respective restaurants, spas, meeting facilities and other amenities, are a multimillion-dollar operation for RSA. The hotel group is operated through RSA’s PCH Hotels & Resorts arm.
The Trail also raises Alabama’s visibility on the national and world map. The Montgomery Business Journal reported RSA has provided more than $670 million in advertisement benefits, which contributed to growing the state’s tourism industry from $1.8 billion to more than $9.5 billion. The Trail gives people a reason to stop in Alabama, instead of just passing through. Not only does the RTJ Golf Trail bring visitors to the state and boost tourism revenue, it also raises the profile of the state in the eyes of outsiders. The extra exposure helps attract new businesses and industries to the state.
It’s quite obvious that the economic impact of the RSA investments on Alabama’s economy has been tremendous. It’s widely believed by folks who keep up with that sort of thing that no pension fund in the country has done more to help its citizens or its home state than has the RSA. Dr. David Bronner and his excellent staff are to be commended for all that they have done for Alabama.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.