Quarterly Financial Report For the Quarter Ended September 30, 2013

Introduction

This quarterly financial report has been prepared by management as required by section 65.1 of the Financial Administration Act and in the form and manner prescribed by the Treasury Board. It should be read in conjunction with the Main Estimates, the previous quarterly financial report, as well as Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2012 (Budget 2012). This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate and programs

The Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages (OCOL) supports the Commissioner of Official Languages in fulfilling his mandate, which consists of taking all actions and measures within his authority to ensure recognition of the status of each of the official languages and compliance with the spirit and intent of the Official Languages Act in the administration of the affairs of federal institutions, including any of their activities relating to the advancement of English and French in Canadian society.

Further information about OCOL’s programs can be found in the 2013-14 Report on Plans and Priorities and in the Main Estimates.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes OCOL’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and used by OCOL, consistent with the Main Estimates for the 2013-14 fiscal year. This quarterly report has also been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before moneys can be spent by the government. Approvals are given in the form of annually approved limits through appropriation acts or through legislation in the form of statutory spending authority for specific purposes

OCOL uses the full accrual method of accounting to prepare and present its annual financial statements, which are part of the organization's performance reporting process. However, the spending authorities voted by Parliament are prepared on an expenditure basis.

Highlights of Fiscal Quarter and Fiscal Year to Date

This section presents a brief analysis of significant variances in relation to actual expenditures and planned expenditures that affected both the quarter and the year to date results, compared to the same periods of the preceding fiscal year.

Significant changes to authorities

As of September 30, 2013, total authorities available for the fiscal year increased by $2.3 million compared to the previous fiscal year, mainly due to the following factors:

  • One-time funding of $2.8 million to pay for the costs of the Headquarters’ office move from 344 Slater, Ottawa, to 30 Victoria, Gatineau. This increase will be offset by future reductions to reference levels over a nine-year period;
  • A transfer of $0.3 million from Public Works and Government Services Canada for the reduction of space of the new offices.

Offset by:

  • Delays in receiving the Operating Budget Carry Forward this year. Last year, $0.9 million was already received by September 30, 2012.

Significant changes to budgetary expenditures

OCOL has spent approximately 43% of its authorities as of September 30, 2013, of which 79% represents personnel costs.

Year-to-date expenditures have increased by $1.0 million or 11% compared to the same period in the previous fiscal year. This is in part due to:

  • Increased level of spending in programs ($0.3 million) associated with:
    • the conduct of a study on language requirements for positions staffed by the Governor in Council;
    • the staffing of liaison officers in the regions consistent with the new regional model;
    • a much more voluminous annual report therefore higher translation costs.
  • Work related to planning the move of the headquarters’ office and preparing the transition to a different workplace with the implementation of Workplace 2.0 ($0.2 million);
  • Information technology investments spending has taken place earlier this year compared to last year ($0.2 million);
  • Increased personnel costs in legal services due to increased number of complex cases ($0.2 million);
  • Economical increase in salary costs ($0.1 million).

Risks and Uncertainties

Funding required for IM/IT

OCOL is gradually implementing its strategic plan. Budget 2012 reflected necessary information technology investments to address its deteriorating applications. Details are discussed in the Budget 2012 Implementation section.

Capacity to meet expectations

OCOL's capacity to handle complaints and respond to requests for information from institutions, the public and parliamentarians, in addition to supporting the internal and legal services necessary to carry out these activities, might not meet these groups’ expectations. OCOL is also facing pressure from outside regarding expectations related to the reduction of backlogged complaint files, some of which result from public service budget restraint measures and the closure of a number of federal institutions’ regional offices.

Headquarters’ move

Later this fiscal year, OCOL will be moving its office to Gatineau. Most of the relocation project relies on estimated costs from other parties, creating some uncertainty in the forecast.

Significant Changes in Relation to Operations, Personnel and Programs

There have been no significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs during the current quarter.

Budget 2012 Implementation

As announced in Budget 2012, OCOL is contributing to the Government’s expenditure restraint efforts by reallocating operating savings towards necessary information technology investments. As a result, the major pressure being faced by OCOL is the lack of supplemental funds for the IM/IT systems update. This removes any flexibility to absorb the cost of other initiatives.

In order to absorb the cost of its Integrated Enterprise Management Solution (IEMS), the organization has reduced and/or postponed certain activities. Most of the funding comes from budget reductions in programs. Once information technology investments have been completed, OCOL will reallocate its resources back to programs to ensure delivery on its mandate.

Approval by Senior Officials

The original version was approved and signed by:

Graham Fraser
Commissioner of Official Languages

Nancy Premdas, CMA
Chief Financial Officer
Assistant Commissioner
Corporate Management

Ottawa, Canada
November 29, 2013

Statement of Authorities (unaudited)

Statement of Authorities (unaudited) (in thousands of dollars)
  Fiscal year 2013–14 Fiscal year 2012–13
Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2014* Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2013 Year to date used at quarter end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2013* Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2012 Year to date used at quarter end
Table note *Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter end.
Vote 20 - Program expenditures 21,622 5,084 9,238 19,348 4,180 8,217
Budgetary statutory authorities 2,250 562 1,125 2,250 562 1,125
Total budgetary authorities 23,872 5,646 10,363 21,598 4,742 9,342

Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited)

Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited) (in thousands of dollars)
Expenditures: Fiscal year 2013–14 Fiscal year 2012–13
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2014 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2013 Year to date used at quarter end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2013 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2012 Year to date used at quarter end
Personnel 15,182 4,244 8,159 15,161 3,847 7,622
Transportation and communications 1,406 143 293 958 155 260
Information 130 92 104 208 26 40
Professional and special services 4,215 1,027 1,483 4,384 518 1,044
Rentals 300 30 111 109 113 199
Repair and maintenance 800 17 35 261 19 27
Utilities, materials and supplies 150 25 46 161 24 45
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 1,689 68 132 350 40 105
Other subsidies and payments - - - 6 - -
Total gross budgetary expenditures 23,872 5,646 10,363 21,598 4,742 9,342