I prepared a thoughtful parsing of these, but went back to check a fact, and I lost my text.
However suffice to say that "prior to" means "before". There's no need to make it more complicated than that. And if you substitute "before" in these sentences, you get a syntactical smorgasbord.
It's jargon, in my humble opinion.
Good ideas can be very plainly put. If it sounds overcomplicated or obscure, the fault is generally not with the reader, it's because the author doesn't know what he's talking about.