Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada

2017-18

Departmental Results Report

The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, P.C., Q.C., M.P

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada

represented by the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs (FJA) Canada, 2018

Catalogue No. J41-5E-PDF

ISSN 2561-2778


Commissioner’s message

 

I am pleased to submit the Departmental Results Report for the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada (FJA) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2018. This report provides parliamentarians and Canadians with information on what we accomplished and achieved in this last fiscal year.

FJA strives to safeguard the independence of the judiciary through various means, including its administration of Part I of the Judges Act. In the past year, we have also implemented changes to strengthen and support the role of Judicial Advisory Committees in the judicial appointment process, supported the new Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments tasked with recommending candidates to the Prime Minister for appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada, prepared for legislation currently before Parliament, and finalized the implementation of an electronic content management system (GCDOCS).

Moreover, we have continued to provide core services to more than 1,200 federally appointed judges, offered them language training, coordinated international co-operation initiatives involving the judiciary, and published Federal Court of Appeal and Federal Court decisions. We have also assisted the Canadian Judicial Council (CJC) in carrying out its operations.

FJA is comprised of professional and dedicated employees who are committed to supporting the needs of the Canadian judiciary. All of us continually aim to improve our practices in order to be more efficient and undertake new challenges.

 

Marc A. Giroux
Commissioner

 

Results at a glance

 

What funds were used?

The department’s actual spending for 2017-18 was $568,449,931.

Who was involved?

The department’s actual full-time equivalents (FTEs) for 2017-18 were 64.

Key Results

ü  Provided orientation, guidance and support to 17 newly appointed Judicial Advisory Committees to ensure adherence to the revised Judicial Appointments process.

 

ü  Provided administrative support to the Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments mandated with providing non-binding merit-based recommendations to the Prime Minister on Supreme Court of Canada appointments upon the retirement of the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, former Chief Justice of Canada.

 

ü  Provided language training services for federally appointed judges aimed at maintaining and improving proficiency in both official languages to ensure Canadians have access to judicial services in the official language of their choice.

 

For more information on FJA’s plans, priorities and results achieved, see the “Results: what we achieved” section of this report.

 

Raison d’être, mandate and role: who we are and what we do

Raison d’être

The office provides services to the Canadian judiciary and promotes judicial independence. The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada is responsible for this organization.

Mandate and role

FJA was created in 1978 under an Act of the Parliament of Canada to safeguard the independence of the judiciary and put federally appointed judges at arm's length from the Department of Justice. Our mandate extends to promoting the better administration of justice and providing support for the federal judiciary. The Judges Act[i] provides for the designation of an officer called the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs. One of the roles and responsibilities of the Commissioner is to act on behalf of the Minister of Justice in matters related to the administration of Part I of the Judges Act.

FJA has an appointments secretariat which administers 17 advisory committees responsible for evaluating candidates under the superior courts judicial appointments process for federal judicial appointments and administering and supporting the new process for appointment of prothonotaries to the Federal Court. FJA also has the mandate to manage the Independent Advisory Board for Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments process, established to assess candidates for appointment to the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as the Selection Process for Prothonotaries of the Federal Court.

FJA provides and maintains a secure on-line system (JUDICOM) to facilitate communication and collaboration amongst members of the Canadian federal judiciary.

In order to support the courts, FJA’s Language Training Program personnel develops and maintains a curriculum, which provides individual and group language training services in both official languages, thus enabling federally appointed judges to improve their second language proficiency and legal terminology, ensure that Canadians have access to justice in the official language of their choice.

Additionally, FJA coordinates initiatives with various government and non-government stakeholders related to the federal Canadian judiciary’s role in international cooperation.

The Federal Courts Reports section of FJA is responsible for selecting and publishing Federal Court of Appeal and Federal Court decisions in both official languages. Selected decisions undergo a thorough editorial process that includes copy editing and citation verification, the preparation of headnotes and captions, and translation accuracy confirmation.

For more general information about the department, see the “Supplementary information” section of this report.

 

Operating context and key risks

 

Operating context

 

FJA operates in a complex environment. Reporting directly to the Minister of Justice but independent from the Department of Justice, its overarching role is to safeguard the independence of the judiciary. It has to administer the Judges Act, which forms the foundation of our mandate, while adhering to the requirements set out by central agencies.

As a micro organization, ensuring the right complement of staff and expertise, as well as employee retention are key challenges. Unlike larger organizations where more than one person is tasked with the same activity, for FJA the loss of a single resource creates a gap which impacts on the achievement of goals in a timely and efficient manner.

Technology and the availability of services and information online will increasingly have an impact on the service expectations of judges and FJA clients. This will put increasing pressure on the way services are delivered by FJA, with an increased focus on technology and online web self-service capabilities. The Government’s transition to greater standardization of corporate business processes and shared service delivery models is also resulting in increased pressure on FJA to update its processes and systems to be aligned with government-wide technologies and tools.  In doing so, FJA must continue to protect the independence of the federal judiciary necessary to maintain the confidence of Canadians in our judicial system.

FJA, being primarily a service organization, must be adaptive and responsive to changing and competing priorities imposed by its clients and external stakeholders in the management of both financial and human resources.

 

Key risks

Key risks

Risks

Mitigating strategy and effectiveness

 

Link to the department’s Programs

Link to mandate letter commitments and any  government‑wide or departmental priorities

Government-wide centralization of common services and shared services.

This risk was identified in the 2017-18 Departmental Plan (DP). Discussions with central agencies were held to explain the mandate of FJA and how this initiative cannot impact judicial independence as well as service levels to judges.

  • Payments pursuant to the Judges Act

Role of Attorney General to upholding the Constitution, the rule of law and respect for the independence of the courts.

Errors (e.g., payments, vacancies lists, procurement).

This risk was identified in the 2017-18 DP. The mitigation strategy was 100% verification of transactions, use of technology to assist in processing payments, staff training, and regular reviews of internal controls.

  • Payments pursuant to the Judges Act
  • Internal services

To provide services and support to federally appointed judges in Canada

Termination of support of legacy system currently in use while long-term solution not developed.

This risk was identified in the 2017-18 DP. Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) earmarked funding for developmental costs towards a new system, and will continue to support FJA until a new solution is finalized.

  • Payments pursuant to the Judges Act

To improve the efficiency and effectiveness of  systems in support of providing services and support to federally appointed judges in Canada

Security and privacy of personal and business information.

This risk was identified in the 2017-18 DP. Mitigation measures included assessing security threats and risks, communication with the Privy Council Office Crisis Management group, developing and implementing recommendations to improve Information Technology (IT) Security, implementing the IT Security framework, preparing business continuity plans, developing and enforcing IM policies, and directing Internet and e-mail traffic through the PSPC provided Secure Channel network.

  • Federal judicial affairs
  • Service to Judges

To provide greater security and opportunity for Canadians

One of FJA’s risks is maintaining a high level of support and services to judges in a manner that supports and promotes judicial independence in the context of government-wide centralization of common services and shared services. The Judges Act establishes a regime of salaries, allowances and annuities unique to federally appointed judges and which is administered by the Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs. The ongoing government-wide initiative to centralize these services cannot interfere with the administration of the Judges Act.

Challenges of administering the unique regime in the Judges Act include ensuring a correct interpretation of the Act and consistency and accuracy in a high volume of transactions environment. The error rate level, for example, in payments, vacancies lists, procurement, etc. may therefore be considered a risk.

Finally, security and privacy of personal and business information is a continuous risk. Maintaining the security and privacy of personal information of judges is of utmost importance given cyber threats to IT security.

 

Results: what we achieved

Programs

 

Payments pursuant to the Judges Act

 
Description

Payments of salaries, allowances and annuities to federally appointed judges, and their survivors, in the courts of appeal and other superior courts in Canada.

Results

The scope of this program includes compensation and pension administration for approximately 1,154 judges and 1,016 pensioners and survivors. The number of judicial appointments has steadily increased along with the number of pensioners during 2017-18.

We continue to apply an internal policy of a 100% verification of expense claims in order to maintain a low error rate in payments and exercise proper stewardship of public funds.

 

Results achieved

Expected results

Performance indicators

Target

Date to achieve target

2017–18 Actual results

2016–17 Actual results

2015–16 Actual results

Accurate payment of salaries, allowances and annuities as per the Judges Act.

% error rate in payments to judges

Less than 2%

March 2018

All payments are verified to ensure compliance with the Judges Act.

All payments are verified to ensure compliance with the Judges Act.

All payments are verified to ensure compliance with the Judges Act.

Comprehensive, up-to-date and validated files are kept on all judges and their survivors.

% of files that are not up to date or are missing information

Less than 2%

March 2018

All judges and their survivors have comprehensive, up-to-date and validated files.

All judges and their survivors have comprehensive, up-to-date and validated files.

All judges and their survivors have comprehensive, up-to-date and validated files.

 

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)

2017–18
Main Estimates

2017–18
Planned spending

2017–18
Total authorities available for use

2017–18
Actual spending
(authorities used)

2017–18
Difference
(Actual spending minus Planned spending)

558,662,575

558,662,575

555,637,296

555,637,296

(3,025,279)

 

Human resources (full-time equivalents)

2017–18
Planned full-time equivalents

2017–18
Actual full-time equivalents

2017–18 Difference
(Actual full-time equivalents minus Planned full-time equivalents)

0

0

0

The FTE complement for this program is included in the FTE allocation for Federal Judicial Affairs as reported below.

 

Canadian Judicial Council

Description

Delivery of programs for Canadians and administrative support to the various committees established by the Council, which is made up of all of the chief justices and associate chief justices in Canada as well as Chief Justices from the superior courts in Nunavut, Yukon and the Northwest Territories.

Results

The secretariat, comprised of 11 employees, provides support to the Canadian Judicial Council in keeping with its mandate to foster the better administration of justice in Canada by improving efficiency, uniformity, accountability and judicial conduct in courts across the country. 

During the course of the fiscal year, Council’s Committees, Sub-committees and Working Groups met on a regular basis to undertake their work in line with the Council’s mandate. 

After consulting all chairs of the committees, sub-committees and working groups, all committee chairpersons expressed satisfaction with the secretariat support received. The secretariat strives for excellence and continuously aims at improving its procedures.

The Canadian Judicial Council plays a pivotal role in ensuring that judges maintain the highest standards of conduct, which is essential to maintaining the rule of law and public confidence in the administration of justice.  Following a thorough review in accordance with Council’s procedures, the Council may make a recommendation ranging from remedial counselling and/or training to removal from office. During 2017-18, the CJC received 714 pieces of correspondence which resulted in 359 opened files of which 322 were processed and closed. Correspondence can include questions or comments relating to the justice system, as well as concerns about judicial conduct that warrant opening a file. 

 

Results achieved

Expected results

Performance indicators

Target

Date to achieve target

2017–18
Actual results

2016–17
Actual results

2015–16
Actual results

Effective functioning of Canadian Judicial Council committees.

% of CJC Chairpersons satisfied with the administration and support of their committees

80% of Committee Chairpersons satisfied with secretariat support

March 2018

100%

100%

100%

 

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)

2017–18
Main Estimates

2017–18
Planned spending

2017–18
Total authorities available for use

2017–18
Actual spending
(authorities used)

2017–18
Difference
(Actual spending minus Planned spending)

3,701,930

3,707,160

4,531,303

3,342,444

(364,716)

 

Human resources (full-time equivalents)

2017–18
Planned full-time equivalents

2017–18
Actual full-time equivalents

2017–18
Difference
(Actual full-time equivalents minus Planned full-time equivalents)

10

11

1

 

Federal Judicial Affairs

Description

Provides services to federally appointed judges including compensation and pension services, financial services, information technology/information management, language training, editing of the Federal Courts Reports, services to the Minister of Justice through the Judicial Appointments Secretariat including the Selection Process for Prothonotaries of the Federal Court, the Supreme Court of Canada Judicial Appointments process, and International Programs.

Results

FJA continued to provide a high level of service to clients in terms of core services such as payment of judges’ salaries, allowances and annuities. And, FJA continues to meet service standards with respect to the range of services provided through the lifecycle of a federally appointed judge position, for example, preparing Order-in-Council submissions upon initial appointment (within 5 days); bringing a judge “on board” (within 1 month of appointment); responding to benefits inquiries from judges (within 2 days); processing retirement documentation (within 1 month); issuing a pension in the event of death (within 3 months). With some exceptions, expense claims are processed within a 10-business day standard. New registered judges in the language training program are assessed and assigned to an instructor within 30 days or less.

The judicial appointments process contributes to an independent judiciary by ensuring an effective and fair candidate assessment process. In October 2016, the application process for federal judicial nominations was updated by requiring that all candidates seeking a federal judicial appointment submit their application pursuant to the new application process regardless of whether or not they had previously applied. Between April 1, 2017 and March 31, 2018, the Judicial Appointments Secretariat received nearly 400 new applications, and over 700 applications were evaluated by the relevant Judicial Advisory Committee. Further information regarding these applications is available on FJA’s website[ii].

In order to contribute to the effective management of the judicial appointments process, FJA personnel managed and updated the list for all judicial vacancies and appointments to superior courts across Canada.

FJA provides judges with JUDICOM - a secure and restricted email and communication system and a portal to various reports and key resources. JUDICOM is regarded as an essential tool to help promote and preserve an independent judiciary and is widely used by judges across the country. Over the course of the years, JUDICOM has consistently remained available for judges more than 99.5% of the time and is fully supported by FJA’s Service Desk.

FJA has undertaken a number of initiatives to improve the efficiency of the services to judges:

·         FJA continues to explore options for judges’ and pensioners’ pay stub printing to reduce overhead costs and increase efficiencies.

·         Judges can now view their personal benefits statements online through a self-service module in JUDICOM.

·         Judges can now view the balances of their conference allowances online on demand through a self-serve module in JUDICOM. This continues to improve service to judges, reduces calls and replaces the need for monthly paper mail-outs.

·         By the end of 2017-18, FJA was in the process of finalizing enhancements to JUDICOM aimed at modernizing the system.

With respect to Canadian judicial engagement in international activities, FJA continues to participate in the Support to Judicial Reform in Ukraine Project (“SJRP”), a 5 year judicial reform project initiative funded by Global Affairs Canada (“GAC”) and implemented by both FJA and the National Judicial Institute (“NJI”).  This project contributes to the advancement of democracy and the rule of law in Ukraine, thereby rebuilding confidence in judicial institutions.

FJA also responds to requests to organize programs for visiting delegations from foreign countries or organizations; it has facilitated such missions for a host of countries including Morocco, Ukraine and the Commonwealth.  In addition, FJA has a memorandum of understanding (“MOU”) with the Superior Court of Ontario and offers a protocol liaison service for other courts including the Federal Court.

Furthermore, FJA coordinates activities related to the involvement of the Canadian judiciary in international cooperation including: providing expert advisory services, administrative support, country assessment information and materials and liaising with other relevant governments departments.

FJA’s Judicial Advisory Committee on International Engagement (“JUDACIE”) is comprised of 12 members including chief justices and puisne judges, and supports the Commissioner in his role with respect to international project activities.

FJA provided language training to judges through its curriculum tailored to participants’ proficiency level goals in both Second Official Language and legal terminology aiming to integrate and practice authentic situations. Participation rates in FJA’s programs continued at a sustainable level with an increase of 35% of new intake compared to the average of 30 judges per year, for a total of 611 judges who had an active status during this fiscal year. Courses were delivered either through individual, immersion, or intensive training sessions. An increasing number of judges benefited from FJA language learning opportunities, enabling them to preside in court, understand testimony, read legal texts, write decisions, participate in legal conferences and conduct presentations in their second official language. FJA pursued various curricula development projects, updated its French as a second language and English as a second language curriculum as well as enhanced distance learning in order to maintain its provision of accessible, high quality language training to participating judges nationwide.

In 2012, following the Canada School of Public Service decision to cease direct language training services, FJA became responsible for the management of a national network of specialists and alternative service providers. This represents a significant increase in FJA’s workload in order to ensure a continuous supply and quality assurance of language training specialists, as well as, developing curricula and new courses while remaining efficient and cost effective. In 2017-18, to support its daily operations, the Judges’ Language Training implemented security measures by contacting the Protective Operations Coordination Centre of the RCMP during the immersion session.

For 2017-18, according to the Judges’ Language Training quality control questionnaire administered after its 5 annual immersion sessions, 97% of the 240 judges said they were satisfied with the language training services offered during the immersion sessions.

The Federal Courts Reports (FCR) were published in a timely and accurate fashion in both official languages. Of particular note, all volumes and individual decisions going back to 1971 have been digitized and will be made available in both PDF and HTML formats on the FJA Web site. The online publication of this collection will promote access to justice and ensure timely access to decisions of precedential value.

Results achieved

Expected results

Performance indicators

Target

Date to achieve target

2017–18
Actual results

2016–17
Actual results

2015–16
Actual results

Federally appointed judges have access to timely and high-quality services.

% of judges satisfied with services provided

90% of judges are satisfied with services provided

March 2018

Not available*

Not available*

Not available*

*Actual results information is not available for these fiscal years.

 

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)

2017–18
Main Estimates

2017–18
Planned spending

2017–18
Total authorities available for use

2017–18
Actual spending
(authorities used)

2017–18
Difference
(Actual spending minus Planned spending)

8,786,280

8,781,050

9,728,010

8,743,391

(37,659)

 

Human resources (full-time equivalents)

2017–18
Planned full-time equivalents

2017–18
Actual full-time equivalents

2017–18
Difference
(Actual full-time equivalents minus Planned full-time equivalents)

50.5

47.5

(3)

Information on FJA’s lower-level programs is available in the GC InfoBase.[iii]

Internal Services

Description

Internal Services are those groups of related activities and resources that the federal government considers to be services in support of programs and/or required to meet corporate obligations of an organization. Internal Services refers to the activities and resources of the 10 distinct service categories that support Program delivery in the organization, regardless of the Internal Services delivery model in a department. The 10 service categories are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; and Acquisition Services.

Results

FJA continued to meet the expectations of managers and employees with respect to human resources, financial management, procurement, information technology and other administrative services. The main improvement areas pursued during 2017-18 are noted below.

Information Management: FJA continued its forward progress on its Information Management program through on-going clean-up exercises, decommissioning of legacy information repositories, and greater adoption of GCdocs as the office’s electronic content management system.

Systems enhancements: Subsequent to decommissioning all 2003 servers, in 2017-18 FJA also completed the decommissioning of about half its inventory of 2008 servers in favour of 2012 servers. As well, FJA implemented numerous other system enhancements such as major upgrades to the office information management system, implementation of new features to FJA’s internal enterprise management system, provision of Samsung devices, and the implementation of a modern disaster recovery platform.

Human resources planning: The principal human resources risk facing FJA is the loss of expertise and corporate memory from the departure of experienced staff and the lack of back up in specialized areas. FJA continued to do succession and integrated HR planning to mitigate this risk.

 

Budgetary financial resources (dollars)

2017–18
Main Estimates

2017–18
Planned spending

2017–18
Total authorities available for use

2017–18
Actual spending
(authorities used)

2017–18
Difference
(Actual spending minus Planned spending)

726,800

726,800

726,800

726,800

0

 

Human resources (full-time equivalents)

2017–18
Planned full-time equivalents

2017–18
Actual full-time equivalents

2017–18
Difference
(Actual full-time equivalents minus Planned full-time equivalents)

5.5

5.5

0

 

Analysis of trends in spending and human resources

Actual expenditures

Departmental spending trend graph

 

Budgetary performance summary for Programs and Internal Services (dollars)

Programs and Internal Services

2017–18
Main Estimates

2017–18
Planned spending

2018–19
Planned spending

2019–20
Planned spending

2017–18  Total authorities available for use

2017–18
Actual spending (authorities used)

2016–17
Actual spending (authorities used)

2015–16
Actual spending (authorities used)

Payments pursuant to the Judges Act

558,662,575

558,662,575

N/A

N/A

555,637,296

555,637,296

534,886,933

532,643,045

Canadian Judicial Council

3,701,930

3,707,160

N/A

N/A

4,531,303

3,342,444

2,762,299

2,488,907

Federal Judicial Affairs

8,786,280

8,781,050

N/A

N/A

9,728,010

8,743,391

8,420,415

7,576,944

Subtotal

571,150,785

571,150,785

582,391,453

596,012,651

569,896,609

567,723,131

546,069,647

542,708,896

Internal Services

726,800

726,800

726,800

726,800

726,800

726,800

726,800

717,936

Total

571,877,585

571,877,585

583,118,253

596,739,451

570,623,409

568,449,931

546,796,447

543,426,832

 

The planned spending by program for 2018-19 and 2019-20 is not available since the information will be presented by Core Responsibilities and Internal Services, according to the approved Departmental Results Framework. The actual spending for the department shows a continual increase over the reporting periods resulting from: an increase in funding to the Canadian Judicial Council for the costs of investigations and inquiries under the Judges Act; the annual increase in judges’ salaries based on the Industrial Aggregate as provided for in the Judges Act; and an increase in the number of judges appointed to the bench and the number of pensioners receiving benefits under the Judges Act.

Actual human resources

Human resources summary for Programs and Internal Services (full‑time equivalents)

Programs and Internal Services

2015–16
Actual full-time equivalents

2016–17
Actual full-time equivalents

2017–18
Planned full-time equivalents

2017–18
Actual full-time equivalents

2018–19
Planned full-time equivalents

2019–20
Planned full-time equivalents

Payments pursuant to the Judges Act*

0

0

0

0

N/A

N/A

Canadian Judicial Council

10

10

10

11

N/A

N/A

Federal Judicial Affairs

47.5

47.5

50.5

47.5

N/A

N/A

Subtotal

57.5

57.5

60.5

58.5

60.5

60.5

Internal Services

5.5

5.5

5.5

5.5

5.5

5.5

Total

63

63

66

64

66

66

* The FTE complement for this program is included in the FTE allocation for Federal Judicial Affairs.

The planned full-time equivalents by program for 2018-19 and 2019-20 are not available since the information was presented by Core Responsibilities and Internal Services, according to the approved Departmental Results Framework, in the 2018-19 Departmental Plan.

Expenditures by vote

For information on FJA’s organizational voted and statutory expenditures, consult the Public Accounts of Canada 2017–2018.[iv]

Government of Canada spending and activities

Information on the alignment of FJA’s spending with the Government of Canada’s spending and activities is available in the GC Infobase[v].

Financial statements and financial statements highlights

Financial statements

FJA’s financial statements (unaudited) for the year ended March 31, 2018, are available on FJA’s website[vi].

Financial statements highlights

 

Condensed Statement of Operations (unaudited) for the year ended March 31, 2018 (dollars)

Financial information

2017–18
Planned
result
s

2017–18
Actual
results

2016–17
Actual
results

Difference (2017–18 Actual results minus 2017–18 Planned results)

Difference (2017–18 Actual results minus 2016–17 Actual results)

Total expenses

573,868,000

569,925,177

548,477,849

(3,942,823)

21,447,328

Total revenues

15,222,000

15,318,053

14,959,737

96,053

358,316

Net cost of operations before government funding and transfers

558,646,000

554,607,124

533,518,112

(4,038,876)

21,089,012

 

FJA’s future-oriented statement of operations (unaudited) for the year ended March 31, 2018, is available on the FJA’s website[vii].

The departmental Net cost of operations shows an increase of $21 million over the previous fiscal year. This increase is a result of a provision in the Judges Act that allows for an annual increase in salaries to judges based on the Industrial Aggregate and an increase in the number of pensioners receiving benefits under the Judges Act.

 

Condensed Statement of Financial Position (unaudited) as of March 31, 2018 (dollars)

Financial information

2017–18

2016–17

Difference
(2017–18 minus
2016–17)

Total net liabilities

(234,928,951)

(224,123,527)

(10,805,424)

Total net financial assets

2,407,093

1,522,903

884,190

Departmental net debt

(232,521,858)

(222,600,624)

(9,921,234)

Total non‑financial assets

245,524

119,321

126,203

Departmental net financial position

(232,276,334)

(222,481,303)

(9,795,031)

 

Net liabilities for 2017-18 are comprised primarily of $2.8 million in accrued liabilities and $232.1 million for the Judges’ Supplementary Retirement Benefits Account (SRBA). The SRBA is the pension plan for federally appointed judges which provides fully indexed annuities to judges and to all eligible survivors providing they meet minimum age and service requirements. Unlike other pension plans, the judges’ plan lacks an explicit accrual rate for benefits.  Instead the full benefit amount is generally payable when the member has completed 15 years of pensionable service and the total of the member’s age and years of service totals 80. The increase of $10.8 million in net liabilities over last fiscal year is fully attributable to the actuarial liability associated with the SRBA.

 

Supplementary information

Corporate information

Organizational profile

Appropriate minister: The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, P.C., Q.C., M.P.

Institutional head: Marc A. Giroux, Commissioner

Ministerial portfolio: Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Enabling instrument: Judges Act[viii] (R.S.C., 1985, c. J-1)

Year of incorporation / commencement: 1978

Other: Information about the Canadian Judicial Council, its mandate and programs are found at the Council’s website[ix].

Reporting framework

FJA’s Strategic Outcome and Program Alignment Architecture of record for 2017–18 are shown below.

1. Strategic Outcome: An independent and efficient federal judiciary

1.1 Program: Payments pursuant to the Judges Act

1.2 Program: Canadian Judicial Council

1.3 Program: Federal Judicial Affairs

1.3.1 Sub-Program: Services to Judges

1.3.2 Sub-Program: Judges' Language Training

1.3.3 Sub-Program: Federal Courts Reports

1.3.4 Sub-Program: Judicial Appointments Secretariat

1.3.5 Sub-Program: Judicial Compensation and Benefits Commission

Internal Services

Supporting information on lower-level programs

Supporting information on lower‑level programs is available on the GC InfoBase[x].

Supplementary information tables

The following supplementary information table is available on FJA’s website[xi]:

4   Departmental Sustainable Development Strategy

Federal tax expenditures

The tax system can be used to achieve public policy objectives through the application of special measures such as low tax rates, exemptions, deductions, deferrals and credits. The Department of Finance Canada publishes cost estimates and projections for these measures each year in the Report on Federal Tax Expenditures[xii]. This report also provides detailed background information on tax expenditures, including descriptions, objectives, historical information and references to related federal spending programs. The tax measures presented in this report are the responsibility of the Minister of Finance.

Organizational contact information

Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada

99 Metcalfe Street, 8th Floor

Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 1E3

Canada

Telephone: (613) 995-5140

Facsimile: (613) 995-5615

Email: info@fja-cmf.gc.ca

Web site: http://www.fja-cmf.gc.ca

 

Appendix: definitions

appropriation (crédit)

Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

budgetary expenditures (dépenses budgétaires)

Operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.

Departmental Plan (plan ministériel)

A report on the plans and expected performance of an appropriated department over a three‑year period. Departmental Plans are tabled in Parliament each spring.

Departmental Results Report (rapport sur les résultats ministériels)

A report on an appropriated department’s actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Departmental Plan.

evaluation (évaluation)

In the Government of Canada, the systematic and neutral collection and analysis of evidence to judge merit, worth or value. Evaluation informs decision making, improvements, innovation and accountability. Evaluations typically focus on programs, policies and priorities and examine questions related to relevance, effectiveness and efficiency. Depending on user needs, however, evaluations can also examine other units, themes and issues, including alternatives to existing interventions. Evaluations generally employ social science research methods.

experimentation (expérimentation)

Activities that seek to explore, test and compare the effects and impacts of policies, interventions and approaches, to inform evidence-based decision-making, by learning what works and what does not.

full‑time equivalent (équivalent temps plein)

A measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person‑year charge against a departmental budget. Full‑time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.

gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) (analyse comparative entre les sexes plus [ACS+])

An analytical approach used to assess how diverse groups of women, men and gender-diverse people may experience policies, programs and initiatives. The “plus” in GBA+ acknowledges that the gender-based analysis goes beyond biological (sex) and socio-cultural (gender) differences. We all have multiple identity factors that intersect to make us who we are; GBA+ considers many other identity factors, such as race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability. Examples of GBA+ processes include using data disaggregated by sex, gender and other intersecting identity factors in performance analysis, and identifying any impacts of the program on diverse groups of people, with a view to adjusting these initiatives to make them more inclusive.

government-wide priorities (priorités pangouvernementales)

For the purpose of the 2017–18 Departmental Results Report, those high-level themes outlining the government’s agenda in the 2015 Speech from the Throne, namely: Growth for the Middle Class; Open and Transparent Government;  A Clean Environment and a Strong Economy; Diversity is Canada’s Strength; and Security and Opportunity.

horizontal initiative (initiative horizontale)

An initiative where two or more departments are given funding to pursue a shared outcome, often linked to a government priority.

Management, Resources and Results Structure (structure de gestion, des ressources et des résultats)

A comprehensive framework that consists of an organization’s inventory of programs, resources, results, performance indicators and governance information. Programs and results are depicted in their hierarchical relationship to each other and to the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute. The Management, Resources and Results Structure is developed from the Program Alignment Architecture.

non‑budgetary expenditures (dépenses non budgétaires)

Net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.

performance (rendement)

What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve, and how well lessons learned have been identified.

performance indicator (indicateur de rendement)

A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.

performance reporting (production de rapports sur le rendement)

The process of communicating evidence‑based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision making, accountability and transparency.

plan (plan)

The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.

planned spending (dépenses prévues)

For Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports, planned spending refers to those amounts that receive Treasury Board approval by February 1. Therefore, planned spending may include amounts incremental to planned expenditures presented in the Main Estimates.

A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports.

priority (priorité)

A plan or project that an organization has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired Strategic Outcome(s) or Departmental Results.

program (programme)

A group of related resource inputs and activities that are managed to meet specific needs and to achieve intended results and that are treated as a budgetary unit.

Program Alignment Architecture (architecture d’alignement des programmes)

A structured inventory of an organization’s programs depicting the hierarchical relationship between programs and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.

result (résultat)

An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization’s influence.

statutory expenditures (dépenses législatives)

Expenditures that Parliament has approved through legislation other than appropriation acts. The legislation sets out the purpose of the expenditures and the terms and conditions under which they may be made.

Strategic Outcome (résultat stratégique)

A long‑term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization’s mandate, vision and core functions.

sunset program (programme temporisé)

A time‑limited program that does not have an ongoing funding and policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made whether to continue the program. In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration.

target (cible)

A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.

voted expenditures (dépenses votées)

Expenditures that Parliament approves annually through an Appropriation Act. The Vote wording becomes the governing conditions under which these expenditures may be made.

 

Endnotes