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Results: 1 - 15 of 100
Daniel Paquette
View Daniel Paquette Profile
Daniel Paquette
2021-06-28 11:35
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I am now presenting a request for an exception from a member. In March 2021, the member submitted two external printing claims that exceeded the current policy limit of 5,000 copies.
You can recall that in spring 2020 there were temporary measures put in place to allow members to use external printers, in collaboration with our printing facility's team, for constituency mail in excess of 5,000 copies. These temporary measures did end on June 30, 2020, and since then the regular policies and use of House printing facilities for constituency mail have resumed.
The member did make use of the House services during this period of time, but given the board's policy in effect at the time when these costs were incurred by the member, in March 2021, the member in this case would be personally responsible for the cost of the copies in excess of 5,000 copies.
Given the current situation, the member has requested that the board make an exception and allow him to charge the full amount to his MOB. We are here to seek the board's direction on this matter.
Thank you.
View Pablo Rodriguez Profile
Lib. (QC)
Yes, Mr. Chair.
I assume that, when our colleague did that at the time, he knew the rules and regulations of what was allowed and what was not allowed.
My concern with requests for exceptions like that is that they can be used by others to break the rules. People could end up saying that so‑and‑so broke the rules, and all he had to do was go to the Board of Internal Economy and get what he wanted.
To me, the rules are the rules, and people have to follow them. It's unfortunate, but I see no reason for an exception in this case.
View Claude DeBellefeuille Profile
BQ (QC)
I agree with Mr. Rodriguez.
There also seems to be some confusion. The document before us indicates that the member did not have his salary taken. In his letter, the member says that it was taken. I would like to have that little confusion clarified.
I think everyone knows the rules. The arrangements for in‑house printing and the number of copies allowed are quite clear. For the time being, I'm not really in favour of granting this exception, unless you have other arguments to convince me.
View Blake Richards Profile
CPC (AB)
I guess what I can do is just add some additional information. I'm certainly sympathetic to some of the comments that have already been made in terms of having to be careful about making exceptions and making sure that those exceptions are appropriate.
I will just add, for the information of members in making this decision, that I have obviously talked to Mr. Vis about this situation, and my understanding of what happened here from his perspective is essentially that there was some communication with printing and mailing services and his office understood that the exceptions had been lifted for certain types of mailings, but I think they didn't realize that the exceptions had been lifted for the types of mailings they were doing. There certainly was a misunderstanding, and a bit of miscommunication possibly as well. That is kind of his version of what occurred. I thought it would be important for context for members.
Again, I do understand that we have to be very careful about when we make an exception. If that is helpful to members at all in making this decision, I wanted to make sure that Mr. Vis's understanding of the situation was put forward as well.
View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)
Are there any other comments or questions?
My understanding, just from what I've heard, is that option 1 is what we go with, the status quo that Mr. Vis is responsible for the extra costs.
View Anthony Rota Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you.
Are there any other comments regarding item number 2?
In that case, we will proceed to item number 3, improvements to the Printing and Mailing Services program.
We'll now proceed to Ms. Kletke.
Rebekah Kletke
View Rebekah Kletke Profile
Rebekah Kletke
2021-06-10 11:29
Thank you, Mr. Speaker.
I am here today with Ms. Julie Allard, director of client service delivery, to provide an update on enhancements we are implementing in printing and mailing services.
Over the past year, we have continually evolved the printing and mailing service offering in line with members’ needs. On January 28, 2021, we presented to members of the board preliminary areas of enhancement that we would further explore, and today we will share what we have implemented or will be implementing following this analysis.
During our review, we considered the lessons learned from the adjustments made over the past year. We remain focused on the changes we could make in order to meet the evolving communication needs of members based on your feedback. After careful assessment, we determined that reducing production time frames from 12 days to nine days and increasing surge capacity during peak periods were the enhancements that presented the greatest potential impact while maintaining current resource and budget levels.
We will reduce our production time frames by implementing several changes. Since the pandemic and moving forward, householder proofs are being produced digitally. This allows us to save, on average, one full day in our production process and $10,000 per year. By fall 2021, we will finish reallocating resources within PAMS to improve our front-end client service response times, verification, proofing and planning capacity.
Over the summer, we will be creating a series of instructional videos to help members' employees prepare and submit printing requests, beginning with holiday greeting cards in the fall. Examples of topics the videos will cover include members' printing allocations and the differences between householders and constituency mail.
By fall 2021, we will adjust planning mechanisms to move away from a first-come, first-served basis in favour of a more personalized approach. This means that we will take into account the location of the constituency—for example, whether it's remote and rural—and Canada Post delivery time frames to prioritize requests.
Also by fall 2021, we will allow for more flexible submission deadlines during peak periods, while achieving the same production time frames and managing costs.
Finally, following this meeting, we will modify two labour-intensive formats so they are better aligned with our production environment while still meeting client needs. These modifications are shown in the appendix included in your package. As part of our implementation strategy, members currently using these formats will be contacted individually to be informed of our modifications.
By reducing the current average internal production timelines, we will also be helping to ensure the efficient and effective use of in-house equipment and resources, consistent quality at a reasonable cost and equitable service to all members.
The second enhancement involves the establishment of framework agreements, and consultation with Canada Post, with western, central, eastern and northern print shops throughout Canada by fall 2021. This will ensure that consistent, timely and high-quality products are delivered through in-house production or by pre-approved external suppliers during peak periods when internal capacity is exceeded.
External suppliers provide services at market-value cost and they are equipped to provide services and are located near a Canada Post distribution centre capable of receiving materials.
The implementation of these enhancements will have no impact on budgets, by-laws or policies. We will continue to monitor average production time frames, including, but not limited to, the number of days for each production stage, client response times, internal and external printing costs, and client feedback to ensure that these enhancements achieve the expected benefits we have shared with you today.
We are happy to answer any questions you may have.
View Blake Richards Profile
CPC (AB)
Thank you.
I'll apologize in advance. I do have a number of questions. This has been a significant source of questions from my caucus, so I will apologize to all of my colleagues in advance. I'll try to keep it as brief as I can.
The first question relates to one of the cases that I brought forward, which was partially responsible for the request for this report today. Thank you for the efforts you made to try to find ways to improve some of the services and efficiencies. That is very much appreciated.
The case was about a colleague who ensured that he met all of the guidelines and jumped through the necessary hoops to make sure that he met all of the deadlines to submit a year-end mailing, which did seem to have to be submitted quite early, but he was able to do so. What happened was that the mailing ended up coming far before the end of the year. It was a Christmas-related thing, if I remember correctly, and it arrived way too early to be reasonably seen for Christmas. Obviously, that was a source of issues.
I'm wondering if these changes—I'm pointing to a couple of things you mentioned, like a more personalized approach to delivery times and greater submission flexibility—would apply in this case. I think that's been one of the challenges. What we're talking about there is finding ways for members to ask that it be delivered as soon as it's ready, or they can ask for it to be delivered on a certain date, etc.
Is that what you're driving at with personalized approaches and greater submission flexibility or is there more to that?
Rebekah Kletke
View Rebekah Kletke Profile
Rebekah Kletke
2021-06-10 11:36
That's exactly what we're driving at, Mr. Richards, and thank you for your question.
The greater flexibility around submission time frames will be facilitated through that more personalized approach that we'll also be implementing concurrently. We're also hoping to improve our communications on those as well and to make them more responsive.
I think those three items together will work and get at that specific case that you've raised.
Thank you.
View Blake Richards Profile
CPC (AB)
Perfect. That's great.
I've been there before, too, where, based on the average window, if I submit it here, it's probably going to arrive around there, and then sometimes it will come a little earlier and sometimes a little later.
In a case like that, a member could now say, for example, that they want this to arrive on November 15. You would tell them that it might not be possible given timelines, or that it was going to be early, that it would be November 15 exactly, or that it would be November 15 or later if you couldn't meet it.
Is that the flexibility we're talking about here? Members could say this is when they'd like it to arrive, and then you would have a conversation about whether or not it could be done?
Rebekah Kletke
View Rebekah Kletke Profile
Rebekah Kletke
2021-06-10 11:37
That is exactly the flexibility.
Julie, do you want to add any further details?
Julie Allard
View Julie Allard Profile
Julie Allard
2021-06-10 11:37
Yes, thank you.
Although we don't have any control on the Canada Post side, we'll definitely make that flexibility available.
View Blake Richards Profile
CPC (AB)
Perfect. Great. I'm glad to hear it.
I have a couple of other things. I'm going to raise the issue of the elimination of paper proofs. I've heard it from others, but it's been an issue for me personally. I have had times when I've designed something based on the folds and what people will see when they open the first fold, etc. That's a fairly important part of the mailing.
I've had times when the way we've agreed to fold it, even with a paper proof, has not ended up being the way it has been sent, which has caused an issue. I'm concerned, actually, that not having a paper proof could exacerbate that problem. I understand the idea behind it—that it improves efficiency—but I would strongly argue that you should at least leave that option available to people. I know that I still want to see a paper proof to ensure that my fold is correct. I'm not sure how else to really ensure that, so I think you should at least leave the option for members to ask for that. It doesn't have to be an absolute requirement that's sent every time, but if a member wishes to have a paper proof, I think it should still be provided.
Is that something you'd be open to?
Julie Allard
View Julie Allard Profile
Julie Allard
2021-06-10 11:38
Yes.
Thank you, Mr. Richards. Absolutely the option will always be there. The default will be no paper proof, but you can also ask for a paper proof. That option will still be available.
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