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Future-Oriented Financial Statements

STATEMENT OF MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITY

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA
Management is responsible for these future-oriented financial statements, including responsibility for the appropriateness of the assumptions on which these statements are prepared. These statements are based on the best information available and assumptions adopted as at January 21, 2011 and reflect the plans described in the 2011-2012 Report on Plans and Priorities. The future-oriented financial information has been prepared by management in accordance with Treasury Board accounting policies which are consistent with Canadian generally accepted accounting principles for the public sector.
Management is responsible for the information contained in the future-oriented financial statements and for the process of developing assumptions. Assumptions and estimates are based upon information available and known to management at the time of development, reflect current business and economic conditions, and are consistent with the mandate and strategic objectives of the Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada. Much of the future-oriented financial information is based on the assumptions, best estimates, and judgment and gives due consideration to materiality. At the time of preparation of these statements, management believes the estimates and assumptions to be reasonable. However, as with all such assumptions, there is a measure of uncertainty surrounding them. This uncertainty increases as the forecast horizon extends.
The actual results achieved for the fiscal years covered in the accompanying future-oriented financial statements will vary from the information presented and the variations may be material.
             


(Original signed by)

   

(Original signed by)

Suzanne Legault      Layla Michaud
Information Commissioner of Canada Chief Financial Officer
           
Ottawa, Canada            
February 2, 2011            


FUTURE-ORIENTED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA

For the year ending March 31
(in dollars)
Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   

Expenses

   
Compliance with access to information obligations 10,025,732 9,400,778
Internal Services   4,717,991 4,423,897

NET COST OF OPERATIONS 14,743,723 13,824,675

 

Segmented information (Note 12)

The accompanying notes form an integral part of these future-oriented financial statements.


FUTURE-ORIENTED STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA

As at March 31
(in dollars)
Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   

ASSETS

   
Financial assets    
Cash 800 800
Amount due from Consolidated Revenue Fund   576,722 488,750
Accounts receivable (Note 7)   35,000 35,000

Total financial assets   612,522 524,550

Non-financial assets      
Prepaid expenses   12,350 13,268
Tangible capital assets (Note 6)   935,196 923,468

Total non-financial assets   947,546 936,736

TOTAL 1,560,068 1,461,286

LIABILITIES AND EQUITY OF CANADA

 
Liabilities    
Accounts payable and accrued liabilities (Note 8)   503,758 359,346
Accrued employee salaries    148,546 186,824
Vacation pay and compensatory leave   377,868 403,985
Employee severance benefits (Note 9)   1,932,054 2,021,488

Total Liabilities   2,962,226 2,971,643

Equity of Canada (Note 11) (1,402,158) (1,510,357)

TOTAL 1,560,068 1,461,286

The accompanying notes form an integral part of these future-oriented financial statements.


FUTURE-ORIENTED STATEMENT OF EQUITY OF CANADA

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA

For the year ending March 31
(in dollars)
Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
Equity of Canada, beginning of the year (1,045,916) (1,402,158)
Net cost of operations (14,743,723) (13,824,675)
Services provided without charge from other government departments (Note 10) 1,679,428 1,692,532
Net cash provided by Government 12,828,264 12,111,916
Change in due from Consolidated Revenue Fund (120,211) (87,972)

EQUITY OF CANADA, END OF THE YEAR (1,402,158) (1,510,357)

The accompanying notes are an integral part of the financial statements.


FUTURE-ORIENTED STATEMENT OF CASH FLOW

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA

For the year ending March 31
(in dollars)
Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   

OPERATING ACTIVITIES

   
Net cost of operations 14,743,723 13,824,675
 
Non-cash items:    
Amortization of tangible capital assets
(244,201) (296,728)
Services provided without charge by other government departments (Note 10)
(1,679,428) (1,692,532)
 
Variations in Statement of Financial Position:    
Increase (decrease) in accounts receivable
1,293 0
Increase (decrease) in prepaid expenses
(5,419) 918
Increase in liabilities
(271,446) (9,417)

Cash used in operating activities 12,544,522 11,826,916
 

CAPITAL INVESTING ACTIVITIES

   
Net acquisitions of tangible capital assets (Note 6)
283,742 285,000

Cash used for capital investing activities 283,742 285,000

 

NET CASH PROVIDED BY GOVERNMENT OF CANADA

12,828,264 12,111,916

The accompanying notes form an integral part of these future-oriented financial statements.

NOTES TO THE FUTURE-ORIENTED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

OFFICE OF THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER OF CANADA

 

1. Authority and objectives

 

The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada (OIC) was created under the Access to Information Act, which came into force on July 1, 1983. The OIC is listed under Schedule I.1 of the Financial Administration Act and is funded through annual appropriations. The Information Commissioner is an independent Agent of Parliament appointed by the Governor-in-Council following approval of the appointment by resolution of the Senate and the House of Commons. The Commissioner is accountable to Parliament for the results achieved by the OIC.

The Access to Information Act is the statutory authority for the activities of the Information Commissioner and the OIC, whose mission is to defend and protect the public’s right of access to government information. In fulfilling this mission, the OIC is guided by the following objectives, which form the basis of its Strategic Plan for 2011-2014:

 
 
√ Conduct efficient, fair and confidential investigations into access complaints and issues. To carry out investigations and effectively resolve non-compliance issues, the Commissioner may use various powers at her disposal, including the conduct of formal inquiries, where required. She may also bring complex and contentious issues before the courts for enforcement or interpretation, while influencing jurisprudence in favour of disclosure. The goal is to become a centre of investigative and legal expertise on access matters;
 
√ Provide expert advice to Parliament and institutions to maximize compliance with the Act and modernize the access to information regime. To this end, the OIC acts as a catalyst for the convergence of access to information and open government standards. The goal is to reverse the declining trends in timeliness and disclosure of public sector information;
 
√ Create an exceptional workplace driven by talent management and an enabling infrastructure and guided by four core values, as defined by OIC staff: excellence in service delivery, leadership, integrity and respect.
 

2. Significant assumptions

The future-oriented financial statements are consistent with the information contained in the 2011-2012 Report on Plans and Priorities.

The main assumptions are as follows:
 

(a) The OIC's activities will remain substantially the same as for the previous year.

(b) Expenses, including the determination of amounts internal and external to the government, are based on historical costs, trend analysis and other analytical methodologies.

(c) Estimated year end information for 2010-2011 is used as the opening position for the 2011-2012 forecasts.

  These assumptions are adopted as at January 21, 2011.
 

3. Variations and Changes to the Forecast Financial Information

 

While every attempt has been made to accurately forecast final results for the remainder of 2010-2011 and for 2011-2012, actual results achieved for both years are likely to vary from the forecast information presented, and this variation could be material.

In preparing these financial statements the Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada has made estimates and assumptions concerning the future. These estimates and judgments may differ from the subsequent actual results. Estimates and judgments are continually evaluated and are based on historical experience and other factors, including expectations of future events that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances.

Factors that could lead to material differences between the future-oriented financial statements and the historical financial statements include:

  • (a) The timing and amounts of acquisitions and disposals of property, plant and equipment may affect gains/losses and amortization expense.
  • (b) The operating budget may be modified through additional initiatives or technical adjustments later in the year.

Once the 2011-2012 Report on Plans and Priorities is presented, the Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada will not be updating the forecasts for any changes to appropriations or forecast financial information made in ensuing supplementary estimates. Variances will be explained in the Departmental Performance Report.

4. Summary of Significant Accounting Policies

The future-oriented financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the Treasury Board accounting policies stated below, which are based on Canadian generally accepted accounting principles for the public sector. The presentation and results using the stated accounting policies do not result in any significant differences from Canadian generally accepted accounting principles.

Significant accounting policies are as follows:

(a) Parliamentary authorities
The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada is financed by the Government of Canada through Parliamentary authorities. The cash accounting basis is used to recognize transactions affecting parliamentary authorities. The future-oriented financial statements are based on accrual accounting. Consequently, items presented in the Future-oriented Statement of Operations and the Future-oriented Statement of Financial Position are not necessarily the same as those provided through authorities from Parliament. Note 5 provides a reconciliation between the bases of reporting.

(b) Net Cash Provided by Government
The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada operates within the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF), which is administered by the Receiver General for Canada. All cash received by the OIC is deposited to the CRF and all cash disbursements made by the OIC are paid from the CRF. The net cash provided by Government is the difference between all cash receipts and all cash disbursements including transactions between federal institutions.

(c) Amounts due from the Consolitaded Revenue Fund
Amounts due from the CRF represent the net amount of cash that the OIC is entitled to draw from the Consolidated Revenue Fund without further appropriations, in order to discharge its liabilities.

(d) Accounts receivable
Accounts receivable are stated at amounts expected to be ultimately realized. A provision is made for receivables where recovery is considered uncertain.

(e) Tangible capital assets
All tangible capital assets and leasehold improvements providing multi-year benefits to the OIC with an initial cost of $2,500 or more are recorded at their acquisition cost. Similar items with a cost less than $2,500 are included in the future-oriented statement of operations. Amortization of tangible capital assets is done on a straight line basis over the estimated useful life of the asset as follows:

Asset class    Amortization period

Telecommunications equipment   10 years
Informatics hardware   3 years
Computer software    3 years
Furniture and fixtures   10 years
Motor vehicles   10 years
Leasehold Improvements   Lesser of  the remaining term of the lease or useful life of the improvement

(f) Employee future benefits

i. Pension benefits
Eligible employees participate in the Public Service Pension Plan, a multiemployer pension plan administered by the Government. The OIC’s contributions to the plan are charged to expenses in the year incurred and represent the total pension obligation of the OIC to the Plan. Current legislation does not require the OIC to make contributions for any actuarial deficiencies of the Plan.

ii. Severance benefits
Employees are entitled to severance benefits under labour contracts or conditions of employment. The cost of these benefits is accrued as employees render the services necessary to earn them. The obligation relating to the benefits earned by employees is calculated using information derived from the results of the actuarially determined liability for employee severance benefits for the Government as a whole.

5. Parliamentary Authorities

The OIC receives most of its funding through parliamentary authorities. Items recognized in the statement of operations and the statement of financial position in one year may be funded through Parliamentary authorities in prior, current or future years. Accordingly, the OIC has different net results of operations for the year on a government funding basis than on an accrual accounting basis. The differences are reconciled in the following tables:
(a) Authorities requested
  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
  Authorities requested    
  Vote 40 - Operating expenditures 11,386,204 10,441,187
  Statutory amounts: Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,411,471 1,563,678
 
  Forecast authorities available 12,797,675 12,004,865
 
Forecast authorities requested for the year ending March 31, 2012 are the planned spending amounts presented in the 2011-2012 Report on Plans and Priorities. Estimated authorities requested for the year ending March 31, 2011 include amounts presented in the 2010-2011 Main Estimates and Supplementary Estimates (A) and (B), planned for presentation in Supplementary Estimates (C) and estimates of amounts to be allocated at year-end from Treasury Board central votes.
  (b) Reconciliation of net cost of operations to requested authorities
 
  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
Net cost of operations 14,743,723 13,824,675
Adjustments for items affecting net cost of operations but not affecting authorities:  
  Amortization of tangible capital assets (244,201) (296,728)
  Services provided without charge by other government departments (Note 10) (1,679,428) (1,692,532)
  Decrease (increase) in vacation pay and compensatory leave 1,911 (26,116)
  Increase in employee severance benefits (Note 9) (308,072) (89,434)
 
    (2,229,790) (2,104,810)
 
  Adjustments for items not affecting net cost of operations but affecting authorities:    
 
Acquisitions of tangible capital assets
283,742 285,000
 
  283,742 285,000
 
  Forecast authorities available 12,797,675 12,004,865
 

6. Tangible capital assets

  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
  Opening balance 895,655 935,196
  Acquisitions of tangible capital assets 283,742 285,000
  less: Current year amortization (244,201) (296,728)
 
  Net Book Value 935,196 923,468
 
 

7. Accounts Receivable

   
  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
  Accounts receivable - external parties and other government departments 35,000 35,000
 
  Total 35,000 35,000
 

8. Accounts Payable and Accrued Liabilities

  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
  Accounts Payable - External parties 352,745 194,879
  Accounts Payable - Other government departments 151,013 164,467
 
  Total 503,758 359,346
 
 

9. Employee Future Benefits

 

(a) Pension benefits

The OIC's employees participate in the Public Service Pension Plan, which is sponsored and administered by the Government. Pension benefits accrue up to a maximum period of 35 years at a rate of 2 percent per year of pensionable service, times the average of the best five consecutive years of earnings. The benefits are integrated with Canada/Québec Pension Plans benefits and they are indexed to inflation.

The OIC’s responsibility with regard to the Plan is limited to its contributions. Actuarial surpluses or deficiencies are recognized in the financial statements of the Government of Canada, as the Plan’s sponsor.

(b) Severance benefits

The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada provides severance benefits to its employees based on eligibility, years of service and final salary. The benefit plan is not pre-funded and thus has no assets, resulting in a plan deficit equal to the accrued benefit obligation. Benefits will be paid from future authorities. Information about the severance benefits, estimated as at the date of these statements, is as follows:

 
  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
 
  Accrued benefit obligation, beginning of year 1,623,982 1,932,054
  Expense for the year 308,072 89,434
 
  Accrued benefit obligation, end of year 1,932,054 2,021,488
 
 

10. Related party transactions

 

The OIC is related as a result of common ownership to all Government departments, agencies, and Crown corporations. The OIC enters into transactions with these entities in the normal course of business and on normal trade terms.

a) Common services provided without charge by other government departments:
During the year the OIC is forecasted to receive without charge from other departments: accommodation, the employer's contribution to the health and dental insurance plans, payroll services and audit services. These services without charge have been recognized in the OIC's future-oriented Statement of Operations as follows:

  (in dollars)         Estimated Results
2011
Forecast
2012
   
  Accommodation provided by Public Works and Government Services Canada 1,000,226 1,010,330
  Employer's share of employees' insurance premiums paid by Treasury Board Secretariat 556,329 556,329
  Payroll services provided by Public Works and Government Services Canada 4,873 4,873
  Audit services provided by the Office of the Auditor General of Canada 118,000 121,000
 
  Total 1,679,428 1,692,532
 
 

11. Equity of Canada

  The equity of Canada represents liabilities incurred by the OIC, net of tangible capital assets and prepaid expenses, that have not yet been funded through appropriations. Significant components of this amount are employee severance benefits and vacation pay liabilities. These amounts are expected to be funded by appropriations in future years as they are paid.

 

12. Segmented information

     
(in dollars)   Estimated Results
2011
 
Compliance with access to information obligations  Internal Services Forecast
2012

Operating Expenses

       
Salaries and employee benefits 10,576,728 7,427,405 3,495,250 10,922,655
Professional and special services 2,101,623 517,318 243,444 760,762
Accommodation 1,000,226 687,024 323,306 1,010,330
Amortization of tangible capital assets 244,201 201,775 94,953 296,728
Transportation and communications 210,200 146,540 68,960 215,500
Information 192,000 131,988 62,112 194,100
Acquisition of equipment 118,945 81,600 38,400 120,000
Rentals 115,000 78,676 37,024 115,700
Repairs and maintenance 100,000 71,808 33,792 105,600
Utilities, materials and supplies 84,800 56,644 26,656 83,300
Other
0 0 0 0

Total operating expenses
14,743,723 9,400,778 4,423,897 13,824,675