Quarterly Financial Report for the quarter ended September 30, 2016

Statement outlining results, risks and significant changes in operations, personnel and program


This quarterly report was 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 OPC Main and Supplementary Estimates (if applicable).

The OPC’s mandate is overseeing compliance with both the Privacy Act (PA), which covers the personal information-handling practices of federal government departments and agencies, and the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Document Act (PIPEDA), Canada’s private sector privacy law. Its mission is to protect and promote the privacy rights of individuals via the following four key programs:

  • Compliance activities, related to the Office’s responsibility to investigate privacy-related complaints and respond to inquiries from individuals and organizations, review breach reports and have the power to initiate its own investigations when warranted (Commissioner initiated complaints). Through audits and reviews, the Office also assesses how well organizations are complying with requirements set out in the two federal privacy laws, and provides recommendations on Privacy Impact Assessments (PIAs), pursuant to the Treasury Board Directive on Privacy Impact Assessment;
  • Research and policy development activities, through which the Office serves as a centre of expertise on emerging privacy issues in Canada and abroad by researching trends and technological developments, monitoring and analysing legislative and regulatory initiatives, providing strategic legal, policy and technical advice on key issues, and developing policy positions that advance the protection of privacy rights in both the public and private sectors;
  • Public outreach, through which the Office delivers public education and communications activities, including speaking engagements and special events, exhibiting, media relations, and the production and distribution of promotional and educational material;
  • Internal services, which refers to activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of the OPC.

Detailed information on the OPC’s authority, mandate and programs can be found in our Report on Plans and Priorities (RPP) and the Main Estimates.

Basis for Presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the Office’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the Office, consistent with the Main Estimates and the Supplementary Estimates (as applicable) for fiscal year 2016-17. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities (more information).

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.

The OPC uses full accrual method of accounting to prepare and present its annual financial statements that are part of the departmental performance reporting process. However, the spending authorities voted by Parliament remain on an expenditure basis.

This report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Highlights of fiscal quarter and fiscal year to date (YTD) Results

This section highlights the significant variances between actual expenditures and planned expenditures that affected both the quarter and the year-to-date results, compared to the same period the preceding fiscal year.

Statement of authorities analysis

Permanent funding for the OPC remained stable over the past fiscal year. As reflected in the statement of authorities table (attached), total authorities available for the year are $24,518K compared to $24,327K in 2015-16. The variance is mainly explained by the end of term agreement of the transfer to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to assist with the establishment and operation of the Spam Reporting Centre associated with Canada’s Anti-Spam Law (CASL) and an adjustment to the employee benefit plans.

As of September 30, 2016, the OPC used 44.8% or $10,977K of its authorities available for the year.

The OPC provides Internal Support Services to other small government department related to the provision of information technology services. Pursuant to section 29.2 of the Financial Administration Act, Internal Support Services agreements are recorded as revenues.

Budgetary expenditures by standard object analysis

As per the attached Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object table, the OPC’s total budgetary expenditures as of September 30, 2016 increased by $363K when compared to the same period last fiscal year. The increase is mainly attributable to:

  • professional and special services, which include management consulting, legal service fees and translation service requests;
  • repairs to the OPC’s technology laboratory, the upgrade of the networking equipment and storage area network capacity;
  • minimal personnel type expenditures.

Risks and Uncertainties

As mentioned in previous quarterly reports, the OPC’s key corporate risks are identified and assessed through an annual update of the Office’s Corporate Risk Profile. This year, the Office identified a number of key risks along with mitigating strategies in its Report on Plans and Priorities that could have a financial impact should they materialize.

The OPC’s mandate as well as the complexity and volume of work continue to grow with no additional resources. For example, the federal government introduced mandatory material privacy breach reporting to the OPC (and the Treasury Board Secretariat) for federal institutions in May 2014. It also passed Bill S-4, the Digital Privacy Act, which amended PIPEDA to mandate private sector organizations to report certain breaches to the OPC. This legislation also allows theOPCC to enter into court-enforceable compliance agreements with private sector organizations following an investigation. While such measures bolster accountability and privacy governance within federal institutions and private sector organizations, it will be a challenge for the OPC to deliver on this expanded mandate with the resources currently available. To help manage this risk, the Office will continue to pursue opportunities for efficiencies in its operations. As well,OPC will monitor closely the impacts of decisions of the Government as it further defines and implements new policy direction.

One key area of uncertainty is the impact of planned government-wide initiatives to standardize and consolidate back-office systems and services. As these initiatives are implemented in the years to come, the OPC takes a proactive approach and remain engaged in discussions to ensure the operating and financial context of small organizations such as the OPC are taken into consideration in the design and roll-out of these initiatives.

The OPC continues to take actions to mitigate the issues arising with the implementation of the new Phoenix pay system for its employees and monitor closely any salary payments adjustments that may be required. As directed by the Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada, the OPC established a claims process to address Phoenix related pay issues in a timely manner.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

The Office’s Deputy Chief Financial Officer (DCFO) will retire at the end of this calendar year. A replacement will join the Office in early October and will be provided with support to ensure a smooth transition.

Approval by Senior Officials:

Approved by,

(Original signed by)

Daniel Therrien
Privacy Commissioner of Canada
Gatineau, Canada

(Original signed by)

Daniel Nadeau, CPA, CGA
Chief Financial Office
Gatineau, Canada



Office of the Privacy commissioner of Canada
For the quarter ended September 30, 2016 Statement of Authorities (unaudited)
(In thousands of dollars)
  Fiscal year 2016-2017 Fiscal year 2015-2016
Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2017 Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2016 Year to date used at quarter end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2016 Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2015 Year to date used at quarter end
Program expenditures 22,152 4,757 9,736 21,908 4,457 9,405
Less: Revenues Netted Against Expenditures (115) - - - - -
Budgetary statutory authority -
Employee benefit plan
2,481 621 1,241 2,419 604 1,209
TOTAL AUTHORITIES 24,518 5,783 10,977 24,327 5,061 10,614

Office of the Privacy commissioner of Canada
For the quarter ended September 30, 2016
Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited)
(In thousands of dollars)
  Fiscal year 2016-2017 Fiscal year 2015-2016
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2017 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2016 Year to date used at quarter end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2016 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2015 Year to date used at quarter end
Personnel 16,908 4,519 9,052 16,817 4,410 8,996
Transportation and communications 894 114 272 867 144 240
Information 687 56 173 511 182 207
Professional and special services 3,885 531 850 3,746 430 657
Rentals 766 61 349 671 3 367
Repair and maintenance 228 52 111 314 17 37
Utilities, materials and supplies 210 19 44 297 (24) 48
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 552 17 28 597 6 20
Transfer payments 500 - 10 500 - 10
Other subsidies and payments 3 8 88 8 (108) 33
Total budgetary expenditures 24,633 5,378 10,977 24,327 5,061 10,614
Less: Revenues netted against expenditures
Internal Support Services (115) - - - - -
TOTAL BUDGETARY EXPENDITURES 24,518 5,378 10,977 24,327 5,061 10,614
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