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PACP Committee Report

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Government Response to the First Report of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts on the Audit of the financial management and administration of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

Introduction

The Public Service Commission is an independent entity with a statutory mandate. The answers to the recommendations that relate to the PSC were prepared by the PSC and incorporated in the Government response to provide a more comprehensive document.

Recommendation 1
Recommendation 2
Recommendation 3
Recommendations 4, 5, 6
Recommendation 7
Recommendation 8
Recommendation 9
Recommendation 10
Recommendation 11
Recommendation 12
Recommendation 13
Recommendation 14
Recommendation 15
Recommendation 16
Recommendation 17, 18
Recommendation 19
Recommendation 20

Appendix A
  1. As Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC)-targeted action, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:
  2. More broadly, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:
  3. To strengthen its oversight role in preparation for the future under the Public Service Modernization Act, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:

RECOMMENDATION 1

That the Public Service Commission revise its action plan to respond to the findings of the staffing audit of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner by adding target implementation and completion dates for all of the measures that it proposes and submit the revised plan to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts no later than 31 July 2004.

RESPONSE

The Public Service Commission (PSC) agrees with this recommendation. The updated action plan (attached Appendix A) identifies a target implementation date and status for each of the measures it proposes.

RECOMMENDATION 2

That the Public Service Commission revise its action plan by indicating how it intends to address the need to focus more attention on staffing activities in smaller departments and agencies.

RESPONSE

As the PSC rebuilds its audit capacity, the PSC audit group will maintain contact and collaborate with the team at the Office of the Auditor General responsible for smaller departments and agencies. As well, it will maintain close working contact with the Public Service Human Resources Management Agency of Canada. The PSC audit group is preparing its annual and long term audit plans based on an assessment of the risk to the integrity of the appointment system in each of the entities in its audit universe. At the same time, the PSC is using its other oversight activities, including policy, delegation, monitoring and reporting, to assess activities in these entities.

RECOMMENDATION 3

That the Public Service Commission monitor progress made in the implementation of all measures in its action plan, assess the outcomes achieved, record any adjustments, and include all findings in its annual performance report beginning with the report for the period ending 31 March 2004.

RESPONSE

The PSC is monitoring progress made in the implementation of its action plan. It will report, through its Annual Report to Parliament, on the major results and their implications for Public Service wide staffing. The PSC will also use its Report on Plans and Priorities and the associated Departmental Performance Report to report on its activities in this regard.

RECOMMENDATION 4

That the Public Service Commission make those with whom it has signed Staffing Delegation and Accountability Agreements aware, in writing, that failure to satisfy the terms and conditions included in the Agreements may lead to revision or withdrawal of staffing authority.

RECOMMENDATION 5

That henceforth, all Staffing Delegation and Accountability Agreements include references to the steps that will be taken should terms and conditions contained in them be breached.

RECOMMENDATION 6

That when the Public Service Commission is made aware of possible contravention of delegated staffing authority or abuse of staffing procedures, it immediately suspend such authority until such time as an audit has been conducted and the results assessed.

RESPONSE to recommendations 4, 5 and 6

The PSC plans to make the terms and conditions more explicit in the delegation instruments required to delegate appointment authorities associated with the new Public Service Employment Act (PSEA).

It is in the process of revising its expectations of departments, and specifying the consequences of breach of conditions of delegated authority, and of inadequate staffing management, performance, and reporting practices. In addition, the PSC will use a variety of tools to identify and assess risks to the integrity of the staffing system. It will take timely and appropriate steps, including, when necessary, suspension of delegated staffing authorities and the conduct of audits, to address these risks.

RECOMMENDATION 7

That Treasury Board Secretariat monitor compliance, by all entities listed in Schedule I.1 (sections 2 and 3) of the Financial Administration Act, with all applicable Treasury Board policies.

RESPONSE

The Treasury Board Secretariat carries out its oversight role for all entities to which its policies apply through its ongoing dialogue with departmental officials at all levels, Treasury Board submissions, reviewing Reports on Plans and Priorities, Departmental Performance Reports, the results of the Treasury Board Secretariat and departmental reviews, evaluations, and internal and external audits. In this way, Treasury Board Secretariat monitors the control environment of departments and agencies to become aware, as early as possible, of control deficiencies or compliance issues.

Over the last year, further to the commitments made by the President of the Treasury Board in Strengthening Public Sector Management - An Overview of the Government Action Plan and Key Initiatives, and as announced in Budget 2004, Treasury Board Secretariat is implementing broad measures to strengthen accountability and compliance across the public sector. These include: the re-establishment of the Office of the Comptroller General of Canada within the Treasury Board Secretariat to oversee rigorously all government spending; plans to appoint professionally accredited comptrollers to sign off on all new spending initiatives; bolstering the internal audit function on a government-wide basis; the development of “enterprise-wide” systems to track all spending and other tools for effective scrutiny and decision-making; and the commitment to audit all annual financial statements of departments and agencies within five years. The Treasury Board Secretariat will also continue its work to create an integrated suite of management policy instruments to support strengthened oversight and to reinforce accountabilities of departments and agencies.

The Management Accountability Framework (MAF) was issued in June 2003 to translate the vision of modern public service management, as established in Results for Canadians, into a set of management expectations. The Framework focuses on management results rather than required capabilities; to provide a basis of engagement with departments and agencies; and suggests ways for them to move forward and to measure progress. To that end, Treasury Board Secretariat is developing mechanisms to annually assess and monitor progress in the achievement of MAF expectations by departments and agencies. This includes working with departments and agencies to establish a baseline for measurement and agreeing to common indicators of effective management performance; regular bi-lateral meetings between the Secretary of the Treasury Board and Deputy Ministers and Heads of Agencies to discuss the performance of their organizations against MAF expectations; conducting annual assessments of departments and agencies; and the production of an annual report to Parliament on the Public Service and its management.

RECOMMENDATION 8

That Parliament be informed of any exemption from Treasury Board policies extended to entities listed in Schedule I.1 (sections 2 and 3) of the Financial Administration Act, and the reasons for such exemption.

RESPONSE

Treasury Board Secretariat will, upon Parliament’s request, report on exemptions to the extent that it can without revealing information that constitutes a Cabinet confidence.

RECOMMENDATION 9

That Treasury Board Secretariat intervene in a timely manner when instances of non-compliance with Treasury Board policies by all those to whom they apply come to its attention and take all necessary corrective action.

RESPONSE

The accountability regime of the Public Service confers responsibility and accountability for addressing non-compliance upon Deputy Heads. The Treasury Board Secretariat monitors the control environment of departments and agencies to become aware, as early as possible, of control deficiencies or compliance issues. Treasury Board Secretariat, in its oversight role, will intervene where necessary, using appropriate action, and will continue to monitor such situations to assess whether further action is needed to respond to identified deficiencies.

RECOMMENDATION 10

That Treasury Board Secretariat report all instances in which it has had to intervene to ensure compliance with Treasury Board policies, naming the entity involved, the nature of the non-compliance, and the corrective measures taken, in its Departmental Performance Report, beginning with the report for the period ending 31 March 2004.

RESPONSE

Treasury Board Secretariat monitors departments and agencies and intervenes as appropriate. It is departments and agencies that are accountable for reporting on the performance of their organizations including the results they achieve, as well as the actions they take to address identified deficiencies. These are to be reported in their Departmental Performance Reports, as required by Guidance for Departmental Performance Reports published by Treasury Board Secretariat. In addition, other means such as the public posting of internal audit reports, associated action plans, evaluations and other management reviews may also provide information regarding compliance with policy.

RECOMMENDATION 11

That the Treasury Board Secretariat develop a detailed action plan to focus more attention on compliance with Treasury Board policies in smaller departments and agencies, and table that plan with the Committee no later than 31 July 2004.

RESPONSE

Since the Office of the Auditor General published its report on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, the Treasury Board Secretariat, in partnership with departments, continues to strengthen a system of monitoring smaller departments and agencies. For example, Treasury Board Secretariat conducts an ongoing dialogue with departments, including the smaller departments and agencies, through the Management Accountability Framework. Treasury Board Secretariat is currently developing proposals to establish a capacity within the Secretariat to provide internal audit services on behalf of small departments and agencies. The Secretariat has also created a dedicated group to increase communication, support and oversight of smaller departments and agencies.

This approach reflects the balance between departmental accountability for ensuring that an adequate management control framework is in place within smaller departments and agencies to manage the risks associated with their activities and the Secretariat’s role of selective oversight based on risk and capacity.

Treasury Board Secretariat decisions to take further oversight action or to intervene are based on judgement taking into consideration the issues associated with a particular situation, the nature of the risks and the actions of the department in taking early and effective remedial action.

RECOMMENDATION 12

That Treasury Board Secretariat submit a copy of the new performance bonus directives to the Public Accounts Committee upon their completion.

RESPONSE

The new Public Service Human Resource Management Agency of Canada (PSRMAC), reporting to the President of the Treasury Board, is responsible for the policy respecting performance pay for executives.

PSHMRAC recognizes the need to produce guidelines that are at once accessible and visible, and that are based on the principle of sound management of public funds. In March 2005, PSHMRMAC will publish the new Performance Management Program Guidelines for the year 2004–05 on its Web site. These Guidelines set out the provisions relating to the performance bonus. The provisions of these Performance Management Program Guidelines take into account the principle of sound management of public funds.

RECOMMENDATION 13

That all departments and agencies be required to include in their departmental performance reports the criteria used to determine the eligibility of executive-level employees for receipt of performance pay, the total number of executives employed, the total number and percentage of those in receipt of performance pay, and the total amount of the bonuses awarded, beginning with the reports for the period ending 31 March 2004.

RESPONSE

PSHRMAC recognizes the need to increase the transparency of salary payments made within the framework of the Performance Management Program.

In March 2005, PSHRMAC will publish on its Web site detailed results of the Performance Management Program for all departments and agencies. Subject to certain restrictions in the Privacy Act, the following information will be made public, by department and agency: the total number of senior executives employed, the value of bonuses awarded, as well as the number and proportion of those who received a performance bonus. The admissibility criteria common to departments will be published in the Performance Management Program Guidelines in March 2005.

RECOMMENDATION 14

That the Treasury Board Secretariat fulfil all of its responsibilities in the area of contracting as set forth under Section 5.1 of the Contracting Policy, heeding in particular to communicate the results to Parliament in its annual contracting activity report.

RESPONSE

The Treasury Board Secretariat is committed to the rigorous stewardship of public funds and recognizes that effective controls, including monitoring and oversight mechanisms, are an essential part of ensuring value for money in spending decisions.

The oversight activities described in the Contracting Policy were amended in 2003 and have been expanded since the publication of the Auditor General’s report on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, through key Budget 2004 measures in Strengthening Public Sector Management. Most notably the government now publicly discloses procurement contracts worth more than $10,000.

The first two reports on procurement contracts over $10,000 were publicly available on each department’s web site and on a government-wide basis through Treasury Board Secretariat’s site on November 1, 2004.

RECOMMENDATION 15

That Treasury Board Secretariat create a pool of resources to make central internal audit services available to small departments and agencies, including the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

RESPONSE

On November 18, 2004, the President of the Treasury Board announced a multi-year initiative to strengthen the internal audit function across the federal government. This initiative is an important part of the Government's agenda to strengthen public sector management and to ensure the rigorous stewardship of public funds.

The multi-year initiative will enhance the internal audit capacity across the public sector and introduce standardized, proven audit processes. A key component of the announcement was that the Comptroller General's Office focus on internal audit services for small departments and agencies who have limited or no internal audit resources.

RECOMMENDATION 16

That in its action plan to focus more attention on compliance with Treasury Board policies in smaller departments and agencies, Treasury Board Secretariat include measures to improve the monitoring of contracting activities.

RESPONSE

Since the Office of the Auditor General published its chapter on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, the Treasury Board Secretariat, in partnership with departments, continues to strengthen a system of monitoring for contracting activities including smaller departments and agencies. Some examples include ongoing dialogue with departments through the Management Accountability Framework including small departments and agencies, monitoring of departmental internal audits and strengthening the quality of audits of contracting activities by publishing the Guide for Managers and Internal Audit: Monitoring Procurement and Contracting, Contracts Disclosure and the development of a Professional Development and Certification Program by Fall 2005.

This approach reflects the accountabilities outlined in section 5.1 of the Contracting Policy and the balance between departmental accountability for ensuring that an adequate management control framework of procurement is in place within their organizations to manage the risks associated with the activity and the Secretariat’s role of selective oversight based on risk and capacity.

Treasury Board Secretariat decisions to take further oversight action or to intervene are based on judgement taking into consideration the issues associated with a particular situation, the nature of the risks and the actions of the department in taking early and effective remedial action.

RECOMMENDATION 17

That the Privy Council Office, working with the Canadian Centre for Management Development, include the following subjects as required elements in the new training program for Governor-in-Council appointees: How Government Operates; Business Planning and Expenditure Management; Performance Measurement and Reporting to Parliament; Human Resources Management; and Access to Information Act and Privacy Act (for organizations subject to these Acts).

RECOMMENDATION 18

That Privy Council Office inform the House of Commons of the commencement date and content of the formal training program for Governor-in-Council appointees and then, in subsequent performance reports, provide information on the number of appointees trained and any subsequent changes made to course content.

RESPONSE to recommendations 17 and 18

The Canada School of Public Service (CSPS) has developed an Orientation and Continuous Learning Program for Heads of Agencies (HoAs) that addresses all of the required learning elements recommended by the Committee. The first offering of this program was on February 23 and 24, 2005.

The Program comprises of three components:

Module 1 - How Government Operates which includes values and ethics and disclosure (including the Privacy Act and the Access to Information Act), principles and processes of parliamentary government, federal agencies and the budget process, and business planning, expenditure management and relations with Treasury Board.

Module 2 - How Government Manages, which includes the Management Accountability Framework, financial management, human resources management and communications.

Module 3 - Relationship Management, which includes lessons learned by former and current HoAs, the Governor-in-Council appointment process and services offered by CSPS and the Privy Council Office.

The CSPS will conduct regular course assessments to ensure that the continuous learning requirements of HoAs are being met. The CSPS will also make available information on the number of appointees trained as well as any changes made to the program.

In addition to this program, the Privy Council Office will further support the learning needs of newly appointed HoAs by offering a mentoring program beginning in March 2005.

The main objectives of this mentoring program are to assist newly appointed HoAs in their integration into the public service by enhancing their knowledge of public service culture, values and ethics, broadening their understanding of government machinery and decision-making processes, allowing an opportunity to exchange best practices on financial and human resources management with other public service leaders and supporting their continuous learning.

Crown corporations have a different governance regime from that of agencies. Therefore, there are several components of the Orientation and Continuous Learning Program for HoAs that do not apply to the CEOs of Crown Corporations. The Privy Council Office and the Treasury Board Secretariat have tailored a two-day orientation session on Corporate Governance for newly appointed CEOs and directors of crown corporations that focuses on: Duties and Responsibilities of Directors; Values and Ethics; Principles of Corporate Governance; Public Policy Environment and Accountability Framework for Crown Corporations.

In addition, CEOs of crown corporations are offered personalized bi lateral orientation sessions that are provided by the Privy Council Office and other central agencies on the following topics: Role of the Crown Corporation in Relation to the Responsible Minister; Responsibility and Accountability of CEOs of Crown Corporations; How Government Operates; Performance Management; Values and Ethics; Governor-in-Council Appointments; Corporate Plans and Budgets; Overview of the Budget and Estimates Cycle; Conflict of Interest and Responsibilities under the Official Languages Act, Access to Information Act and Privacy Act.

RECOMMENDATION 19

That Privy Council Office conduct thorough candidate searches for all officers of Parliament in sufficient advance of vacancy to ensure that there are several candidates to choose from and that each candidate possesses the experience and integrity required to qualify for the position.

RESPONSE

The Government conducts candidate searches for officers of Parliament, with appropriate consultation of opposition parties. Candidate searches will be done well in advance of terms of office expiring to ensure a thorough and complete search process.

RECOMMENDATION 20

That the House of Commons consider amending Standing Order 111.1(1) by deleting the word “may” and replacing it with word “shall”.

RESPONSE

This recommendation falls within the purview of the House of Commons to implement.

Appendix A

PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION UPDATED ACTION PLAN IN RESPONSE TO THE STAFFING AUDIT OF THE OFFICE OF THE PRIVACY COMMISSIONER

  1. As Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC)-targeted action, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:
    1. Maintain the conditions imposed on delegated non-executive hiring and promotion, as well as the withdrawal of delegation for executive (EX) appointments, until the recommendations are addressed and their implementation confirmed by the follow-up audit.

      STATUS: The PSC is maintaining the conditions on OPC staffing until it is confident that the OPC has the necessary management capacity and human resources function in place. The OPC is making steady progress toward fulfilling the recommendations that will restore the integrity of its staffing procedures, but has not yet reached the point where its delegated authority for staffing can be restored. Follow up audit activities will continue until the PSC decides, on the basis of progress made, that the OPC has satisfied the conditions for restoration of its delegated staffing authority.

      TARGET DATE: April 2005

    2. Refer staffing files that were identified by the Public Service Commission audit as problematic to the interim Privacy Commissioner for possible disciplinary action.

      STATUS: All 12 staffing files and related management practices referred to the Privacy Commissioner for review were followed up. The OPC has indicated in writing that the four employees remaining on staff perform their duties in a highly satisfactory manner, and that further corrective action would not be constructive. It should be noted that two senior managers have resigned (D. Vallières, Director General, Communications and Strategic Analysis, and A. Lamarche, Chief of Staff), another has taken retirement (J. Delisle, Executive Director), and the Head of Human Resources (G. Gauthier) has deployed outside the OPC.

      COMPLETED: April 2004

    3. Through its Recourse Branch, conduct:

      • eight investigations into the appointments of specific individuals;
      • one investigation into the staffing patterns of senior OPC managers and Human Resources specialists;
      • possibly, more investigations; and
      • possibly, boards of enquiry.

      STATUS: Nine investigations were initiated into the appointments of specific individuals. As of 11 June 2004 all nine of these cases had been completed. Eight cases were closed with no corrective action required. One case concerning fraud resulted in the revocation of the appointment.

      Regarding the investigations into individual appointments: in several cases the investigators concluded that further intervention was not necessary because, despite lack of adherence to some of the staffing values, such as fairness, transparency and equity of access, the appointments were made in accordance with the Public Service Employment Act (PSEA) and Regulations, or the appointees were qualified for their positions, or the appointees had left the Public Service. In several instances the investigators concluded that actions taken in accordance with the PSC's Action Plan addressed the irregularities.

      One investigation into the staffing patterns of senior OPC managers and Human Resources specialists is completed. It was decided that the actions already taken by the PSC as a result of its staffing audit were an adequate response to the irregularities discovered by this systemic investigation.

      Total investigations/ inquiries = Ten

      COMPLETED: June 2004


    4. Ensure that corrective actions are taken immediately upon receiving the results of the investigations and boards of inquiry.

      STATUS: The PSC revoked the appointment of one individual (effective 9 February 2004) following the inquiry and ensured that all other recommendations were followed up on, as part of the audit process.

      COMPLETED: February 2004

    5. Work with the OPC and the Treasury Board Secretariat to address the staffing consequences of the correction of confirmed over-classification of OPC positions.

      STATUS: The PSC’s National Capital and Eastern Ontario Region (NCEOR) office started processing OPC staffing actions in July 2003. No staffing action is approved without consultation with the PSC Recourse and Audit branches, and if required, the Manager of Interpretation and Advice, Organization and Classification, at the Public Service Human Resources Management Agency of Canada. Until its disbanding in February 2004, a representative of the NCEOR was a member of the Treasury Board Secretariat organization and classification sector working group that was conducting a review of classification at the OPC.

      COMPLETED: March 2004

    6. Provide guidance to the Interim Privacy Commissioner with regard to establishing adequate management controls (for example, provide the OPC’s Human Resources specialists with training on values-based staffing).

      STATUS: In November/December 2003, the PSC conducted four workshops on values based staffing which were mandatory for OPC managers and supervisors. All 29 managers and supervisors on staff at the time participated in this training. An additional 18 employees, including two HR specialists, also attended the training. Evaluations by the participants indicated that the objectives of the training were met.

      COMPLETED: December 2003

    7. Conduct a follow-up audit in April 2004, to ascertain whether the following staffing management controls are in place:

      • recruitment and staffing strategies, plans and policies are linked to the OPC’s mission;
      • staffing specialists and managers are knowledgeable and organized;
      • communication to managers and employees regarding staffing matters is timely; and,
      • performance reports on staffing enable appropriate modifications to be made to the staffing regime.

      STATUS: The findings of the follow up to the audit were that, although by the end of the fiscal year the OPC had made some progress in addressing the findings and recommendations of the audit, indications were that in spite of significant effort, the OPC had not yet finalized, implemented and communicated its staffing strategy; nor had it put in place the required reporting and control system. The PSC is maintaining the conditions on OPC staffing until it is confident that the OPC has the necessary management capacity and human resources function in place. Follow up audit activities will continue until the PSC decides, on the basis of progress made, that the OPC has satisfied the conditions for restoration of its delegated staffing authority.

      COMPLETED: October 2004


  2. More broadly, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:
    1. Reassess its risk profiles of departments and agencies.

      STATUS: As part of the Departmental Performance Assessment Review, the PSC is in the process of updating risk profiles for all organizations.

      TARGET DATE: March 2005

    2. Review its intelligence-gathering and intervention policies and systems, including the capacity to conduct audits and investigations, and to withdraw delegation.

      STATUS: The PSC has reviewed its intelligence gathering for the assessment of accountability reports in Fall 2004. The PSC has developed a new policy and guidance. The PSC has strengthened its audit capacity and will maintain its investigation capacity.

      COMPLETED: September 2004

    3. Initiate a study on bureaucratic patronage in the Public Service.

      STATUS: The PSC began its study of bureaucratic patronage in late Fall 2003. During the first phase, based on an internal review of documentation as well as interviews, a preliminary definition of bureaucratic patronage was developed. In order to add other perspectives, on 29 April 2004, the President of the PSC hosted a meeting with select individuals from various backgrounds in public administration, human resources management and ethics.

      Consistent with recommendations from this group, in Fall 2004, the PSC conducted focus groups. As well, a survey of public servants across the country is being carried out in Winter 2005 to test the preliminary definition and to gauge perceptions of what behaviour is and is not appropriate. The PSC will also audit a sample of staffing transactions to test for bureaucratic patronage within the Public Service based on this definition. The results of this research will be reported along with the PSC's 2004 2005 Annual Report.

      TARGET DATE: October 2005 for completion of the study.

    4. In relation to executive resourcing:

      • independently choose selection board members for Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC) staffing processes, and review its general practices regarding the composition of selection boards;

        STATUS: To date, the PSC has exercised its authority to choose independent selection board members in two executive (EX) staffing processes at the OPC. It will continue to do this for future staffing processes.

        TARGET DATE: Ongoing

      • endorse the use of three mandatory assessment tools (assessment centre, interviews, structured reference checks) in instances where the initial appointment to an executive level is via a reclassification or a "without competition" process;

        STATUS: The PSC has formally signed off a "record of decision" requiring the use of these three assessment tools for all "reclassification" or "without competition" processes.

        COMPLETED: January 2004


      • review the authorities delegated to deputy heads in relation to acting appointments at the EX level, and put conditions in place to ensure meritorious acting appointments and to limit their duration; and

        STATUS: Senior personnel from the Executive Resourcing Directorate of the PSC organized a meeting with departmental executive units on 19 December 2003 and told them: "Managers should make every effort to initiate staffing processes before positions become vacant or to staff vacant positions as soon as possible to avoid long term acting situations. In order to identify a person for an anticipated acting period greater than six months, the PSC requires the use of: relative merit; or an advertised selection process; or rotational assignments."

        COMPLETED: December 2003

        Executive Resourcing Directorate subsequently revised the staffing manual to reflect the PSC’s direction.

        COMPLETED: May 2004

        A government wide audit to examine acting appointments to and within the Executive group began in September 2004.

        TARGET DATE: April 2006 for completion of audit

        In addition, with the implementation of the new PSEA, the PSC is examining the use of acting appointments to ensure that deputy heads are accountable for long term acting appointments at all levels.

        TARGET DATE: December 2005

      • review terms, conditions and reporting requirements related to delegated EX staffing, and adjust the process for departmental attestations for delegated appointments, as appropriate, to ensure full compliance.

        STATUS: Terms and requirements were reviewed. Changes will be made with the coming into effect of the new PSEA. At the meeting of representatives of departmental executive units on 19 December 2003, the Director General of Executive Resourcing Directorate told them of the requirement to submit attestations for delegated appointments no later than five working days following the appointment by the deputy head.

        COMPLETED: December 2003

        Executive Resourcing Directorate consultants reinforce this requirement in their dealings with departmental officials, particularly newly appointed resourcing officers, to ensure full compliance.

        TARGET DATE: Ongoing

        In addition, a further review of reporting requirements is being carried out in the larger context of delegating appointment authorities to deputy heads with the implementation of the new PSEA.

        TARGET DATE: December 2005

    5. Reinforce the PSC’s expectations with regard to internal management controls for staffing with departments and agencies.

      STATUS: A draft Staffing Management Accountability Framework has been developed and formed part of the set of accountability tools that was consulted upon in Spring 2004; it will subsequently become part of the accountability expectations of the PSC.

      TARGET DATE: December 2005


  3. To strengthen its oversight role in preparation for the future under the Public Service Modernization Act, the Public Service Commission (PSC) will:
    1. Ensure the future integrity of the appointment process by putting in place a policy / delegation / accountability framework, including a policy for the hiring of "casual" employees.

      STATUS: The PSC is in the process of developing a framework that clearly sets out the accountabilities of deputy heads, integrating elements of policy, delegation of authority and performance and reporting requirements, for consultation with stakeholders in anticipation of the implementation of the new PSEA.

      Consultation through various means (in particular through consultation groups formed by the Public Service Commission Advisory Council and the National Staffing Council) is ongoing. Formal consultation events were held on 29 and 30 September and 9 and 10 November 2004.

      Communication and training related to the completed framework are planned for early 2005.

      TARGET DATE: December 2005

    2. Make a submission to Treasury Board within the next two months seeking ongoing resources to strengthen the PSCs’s oversight capacity.

      STATUS: The PSC has created, as of 1 April 2004, an Audit Branch for the purpose of creating a strong audit capacity. The Audit Branch will comprise some 60 employees in three years. The PSC will review all of its activities in the context of its new mandate and priorities. As well, this process will permit internal re alignment of resources, and identify funding gaps. Resources will be reallocated to build the audit capacity. If there are, however, insufficient funds for the Audit Branch, the PSC will request additional funding to ensure that the audit capacity is funded at a sustainable level.

      TARGET DATE: April 2007

    3. Present for parliamentary review a position paper on the future service role of the PSC and its relation to the oversight role, building on the amendments to Bill C-25 regarding the appointment of the President under Parliament and additional reporting to Parliament.

      STATUS: Via its Report on Plans and Priorities and its Departmental Performance Report, the PSC will present its plan to implement its vision for the future of service delivery at the PSC as well as its relation to the oversight role.

      TARGET DATE: March 2005