Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Lafayette’s $20M Investment Sees Good Gains During Second Quarter

Lafayette County’s $20 million trust fund from the sale of the old Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi gained $643,000 in the second quarter of 2021.

The fund’s value at the end of the first quarter, March 31, was $21,643,595. As of June 30, the fund was worth $22,286,704.

The fund has continued to gain into the third quarter. As of Friday, the fund was worth $22,328,822.

Green Square asset management firm manages the trust fund and presented the second-quarter report to the Lafayette County Board of Supervisors Monday.

At the direction of the Board, Green Square recently adjusted the fund’s allocations to take on a little more risk, which yielded higher rewards.

Last year, 88 percent of the funds were invested in fixed income — bonds and money market funds — and 12 percent in stocks.

Now, 70 percent of the fund is in fixed income and 30 percent is invested in stocks.

The fund has had a 3.4 percent return during the second quarter.

The goal is to keep the principal safe while allowing the board to receive 3 percent of the fund’s earnings each year. Each year, the supervisors have elected to put those funds, which have averaged about $500,000, toward road repairs.

In 2012, Baptist paid the city and county $60 million to buy the hospital, so it could get out of its lease and build the new Baptist hospital that opened in November 2017. Baptist sold the old facility to the University of Mississippi for $22 million. The city and county split the funds and received $30 million each. The Board of Supervisors at the time elected to take $10 million and pay off all county debt and invest the remaining $20 million.