Quarterly Financial Report - For the quarter ended September 30, 2014
Statement outlining results, risks and significant changes in operations, personnel and programs
This quarterly report should be read in conjunction with the Main Estimates, the previous quarterly report for the current fiscal year, as well as Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2012 (Budget 2012). It has been prepared by management as required by section 65.1 of the Financial Administration Act and in the form and manner prescribed by Treasury Board. This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.
The role of the Courts Administration Service (CAS) is to provide effective and efficient registry, judicial and corporate services to the Federal Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada and the Tax Court of Canada. Further details on CAS’ programs can be found in the 2014-15 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 CAS’ spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the organization consistent with the 2014-15 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a prescribed 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.
CAS uses the full accrual method of accounting to prepare and present its annual departmental financial statements that are part of the departmental performance reporting process. However, the spending authorities voted by Parliament remain on an expenditure basis.
Highlights of fiscal quarter and fiscal year to date (YTD) results
Significant Changes to Authorities available for use for the fiscal year
As at September 30, 2014, authorities available for use for the fiscal year increased by $2,134 thousand (3%) compared to the same quarter in 2013-14, from $68,500 thousand to $70,634 thousand. As a result of the Government expenditure management cycle and certain conditions imposed by Central Agencies, there are often significant fluctuations by quarter between authorities received and the timing of expenditures realized.
This increase in authorities is partly due to the timing of the operating budget carry-forward funding. The 2014-15 operating budget carry-forward funding of $2,576 thousand was received in the second quarter of the fiscal year. The 2013-14 operating budget carry-forward funding was not received until the third quarter of the fiscal year. In addition, an increase in funding of $366 thousand was received for negotiated salary increases for signed collective agreements.
These increases in authorities were partly offset by a $508 thousand reduction in funding related to the implementation of savings measures announced in Budget 2012. The details of these savings measures are explained in the Budget 2012 Implementation section below. In addition, a $374 thousand decrease in authorities is attributable to adjustments to CAS’ contributions to employee benefit plans, as per central agency direction.
Various other minor changes resulted in a net $74 thousand increase in authorities.
Significant Changes to Expenditures
Figure 1 presents current and prior fiscal year expenditures compared to annual authorities, as of the end of the second quarter. These results are discussed in the sections that follow.
Description of the image
Figure 1 – Second-quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities
At the end of the second quarter of 2014-15, authorities totalled $70,634 thousand compared to $68,500 thousand at the end of the same quarter of 2013-14.
During the first quarter of 2013-14, expenditures totalled $16,608 thousand compared to $15,840 thousand during the same quarter of 2013-14.
During of the second quarter of 2013-14, expenditures totalled $16,014 thousand compared to $15,740 thousand during the second quarter of 2013-14.
As illustrated in Figure 1, second-quarter expenditures increased by $274 thousand (2%) compared to the same quarter in 2013-14, from $15,740 thousand to $16,014 thousand. As a result, 23% of the authorities available for use for the fiscal year were expended during the second quarter of 2014-15, consistent with the 23% expended in the same quarter of 2013-14.
The increase in second-quarter expenditures is partly due to a $316 thousand (585%) increase in expenditures related to the acquisition of machinery and equipment compared to the same quarter in 2013-14, from $54 thousand to $370 thousand. This is mainly attributable to increases in the purchase of equipment and parts for the purposes of information technology (IT) and security activities and initiatives.
Additionally, there was a $276 thousand (17%) increase in professional and special services compared to the same quarter in 2013-14, from $1,581 thousand to $1,857 thousand. This is largely attributable to increases in protection services, translation services (timing variance), as well as various IT-related investments, with an offsetting decrease in temporary help services.
The above increases were offset by a $272 thousand (-2%) decrease in personnel expenditures, from $12,589 to $12,317, mainly attributable to a decrease in the settlement of previously earned and accrued severance pay and a decrease in CAS’ contributions to employee benefit plans, as per central agency direction.
Minor variations in the timing of the delivery of goods and services account for the remaining $46 thousand decrease in second-quarter expenditures in 2014-15 compared to the same quarter in the previous fiscal year.
Year to date Expenditures
As illustrated in Figure 1, year to date expenditures increased by $1,042 thousand (3%) compared to the same period of the previous fiscal year, from $31,580 thousand to $32,622 thousand. As a result, 46% of the authorities available for use for the fiscal year were expended as of the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2014-15, consistent with the same period of 2013-14.
The increase is partly due to transition payments totalling $1,503 thousand, mostly expended in the first quarter of the fiscal year, for implementing salary payment in arrears by the Government of Canada. The transition payments have been classified under “Other subsidies and payments” expenditure, as per central agency direction. As compensation, CAS will receive additional appropriations from central sources later this fiscal year or will be credited this amount through the normal carry-forward process at fiscal year end.
Year to date personnel expenditures decreased by $1,137 thousand (-4%) compared to the same period of the previous fiscal year, from $25,371 thousand to $24,234 thousand. This decrease is primarily related to the settlement of previously earned and accrued severance pay, as well as a decrease in CAS’ contributions to employee benefit plans, as per central agency direction. This decrease was partly offset by the year to date increases in the acquisition of machinery and equipment ($410 thousand) and professional and special services ($248 thousand), both of which are primarily due to IT and security activities and initiatives.
Minor variations in the timing of the delivery of goods and services resulted in a further $18 thousand increase in year to date expenditures.
Risks and Uncertainties
The financial situation of CAS remains precarious and it will continue to pose both risks and challenges in the years to come. For some years, CAS has been lacking the permanent funding necessary to enable the organization to fully meet its commitments and address major program integrity issues. Budget 2011 partially addressed this need, providing CAS with approximately $3 million per year for some program integrity measures. However, Budget 2014 announced that the operating budget of departments would be frozen at their 2013-14 level for the years 2014-15 and 2015-16. This represents a significant risk and uncertainty for CAS because additional funding will not be received for future salary increases resulting from signed collective bargaining agreements.
Judicial functions of the courts are a responsibility of the judiciary and impose requirements that are beyond CAS’ control. A majority of the non-personnel expenses incurred by CAS are contracted costs for services supporting the judicial process and court hearings. They include translation, court reporters, transcripts, and security services, and they are mostly driven by the number, type and duration of hearings conducted in any given year. These are essentially non-discretionary and limit the organization's financial flexibility.
The aforementioned pressures and uncertainties continue to impact the ability of CAS to deliver on its programs and to support the judiciary. The lack of funding impacts the upgrade of aging IT systems, necessary enhancement of security measures, maintenance and upgrade of court facilities to address health and safety concerns and other capital investments.
To address these risks, CAS will continue to monitor closely its budget spending through frequent reviews of expenditures to rapidly identify and address financial pressures. CAS will also continue to work collaboratively with central agencies to identify a sustainable funding model.
Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs
There were no significant changes in relation to CAS operations, personnel and programs.
Budget 2012 Implementation
This section provides an overview of the savings measures announced in Budget 2012 that are being implemented in order to refocus government and programs, make it easier for Canadians and business to deal with their government, and modernize and reduce the back office.
To contribute to the Government’s effort to reduce the deficit, CAS has committed to use its resources more efficiently, by streamlining its services and redistributing work. In 2012-13 and 2013-14, CAS achieved savings of approximately $0.5 million. Savings increased to an ongoing amount of $1.0 million in 2014-15.
Significant Changes to Planned and Actual Expenditures
There was a $508 thousand decrease in authorities in the first quarter of 2014-15 compared to the same quarter in 2013-14 related to the implementation of savings measures announced in Budget 2012. By the end of fiscal year 2014-15, corresponding savings in actual expenditures will be realized. There was no significant variance in workforce adjustment costs in the second quarter of 2014-15 compared to the same quarter of 2013-14.
Risks and Uncertainties
There are no financial risks or uncertainties related to Budget 2012 savings.
Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs
There were no significant changes in CAS operations, personnel and programs as a result of the implementation of the measures announced in Budget 2012.
Approval by Senior Officials
Original signed by
Daniel Gosselin, FCPA, FCA
Original signed by
Francine Côté, CPA, CA, CISA
Deputy Chief Administrator, Corporate Services
Chief Financial Officer
(November 28, 2014)
|Fiscal year 2014-15||Fiscal year 2013-14|
|Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2015 (1)||Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2014||Year to date used at quarter-end||Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2014 1||Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2013||Year to date used at quarter-end|
|Vote 30 – Operating expenditures||63,836||14,316||29,226||61,325||13,946||27,994|
|Contributions to employee benefit plans||6,784||1,696||3,392||7,165||1,792||3,583|
|Spending of proceeds from the disposal of surplus Crown assets||12||-||-||7||-||-|
|Refunds of amounts credited to revenues in previous years||2||2||4||3||2||3|
|Total budgetary authorities||70,634||16,014||32,622||68,500||15,740||31,580|
1- Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter-end.
|Expenditures:||Fiscal year 2014-15||Fiscal year 2013-14|
|Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2015||Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2014||Year to date used at quarter-end||Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2014||Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2013||Year to date used at quarter-end|
|Transportation and communications||2,906||656||1,063||3,132||680||1,064|
|Professional and special services||11,630||1,857||3,449||11,122||1,581||3,201|
|Repair and maintenance||433||53||90||463||44||97|
|Utilities, materials and supplies||2,237||430||978||2,315||398||861|
|Acquisition of land, building and works||531||1||1||3||34||34|
|Acquisition of machinery and equipment||2,821||370||481||1,045||54||71|
|Other subsidies and payments||18||77||1,546||38||-9||-3|
|Total budgetary expenditures||70,634||16,014||32,622||68,500||15,740||31,580|
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