Report on Plans and Priorities (RPP) 2014-15

 

The original version was signed by

The Honourable Peter MacKay, P.C., Q.C., M.P.
Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

2014-15 Estimates

PART III – Departmental Expenditure Plans: Reports on Plans and Priorities

Purpose

Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPP) are individual expenditure plans for each department and agency. These reports provide increased levels of detail over a three-year period on an organization's main priorities by strategic outcome, program and planned/expected results, including links to related resource requirements presented in the Main Estimates. In conjunction with the Main Estimates, Reports on Plans and Priorities serve to inform members of Parliament on planned expenditures of departments and agencies, and support Parliament's consideration of supply bills. The RPPs are typically tabled soon after the Main Estimates by the President of the Treasury Board.

Estimates Documents

The Estimates are comprised of three parts:

Part I - Government Expenditure Plan - provides an overview of the Government's requirements and changes in estimated expenditures from previous fiscal years.

Part II - Main Estimates - supports the appropriation acts with detailed information on the estimated spending and authorities being sought by each federal organization requesting appropriations.

In accordance with Standing Orders of the House of Commons, Parts I and II must be tabled on or before March 1.

Part III - Departmental Expenditure Plans - consists of two components:

  • Report on Plans and Priorities (RPP)
  • Departmental Performance Report (DPR)

DPRs are individual department and agency accounts of results achieved against planned performance expectations as set out in respective RPPs.

The DPRs for the most recently completed fiscal year are tabled in the fall by the President of the Treasury Board.

Supplementary Estimates support Appropriation Acts presented later in the fiscal year. Supplementary Estimates present information on spending requirements that were either not sufficiently developed in time for inclusion in the Main Estimates or have subsequently been refined to account for developments in particular programs and services. Supplementary Estimates also provide information on changes to expenditure forecasts of major statutory items as well as on such items as: transfers of funds between votes; debt deletion; loan guarantees; and new or increased grants.

For more information on the Estimates, please consult the Treasury Board Secretariat website.

Links to the Estimates

As shown above, RPPs make up part of the Part III of the Estimates documents. Whereas Part II emphasizes the financial aspect of the Estimates, Part III focuses on financial and non-financial performance information, both from a planning and priorities standpoint (RPP), and an achievements and results perspective (DPR).

The Management Resources and Results Structure (MRRS) establishes a structure for display of financial information in the Estimates and reporting to Parliament via RPPs and DPRs. When displaying planned spending, RPPs rely on the Estimates as a basic source of financial information.

Main Estimates expenditure figures are based on the Annual Reference Level Update which is prepared in the fall. In comparison, planned spending found in RPPs includes the Estimates as well as any other amounts that have been approved through a Treasury Board submission up to February 1st (See Definitions section). This readjusting of the financial figures allows for a more up-to-date portrait of planned spending by program.   

Changes to the presentation of the Report on Plans and Priorities

Several changes have been made to the presentation of the RPP partially to respond to a number of requests – from the House of Commons Standing Committees on Public Accounts (PAC - Report 15), in 2010; and on Government and Operations Estimates (OGGO - Report 7), in 2012 – to provide more detailed financial and non-financial performance information about programs within RPPs and DPRs, thus improving the ease of their study to support appropriations approval.

  • In Section II, financial, human resources and performance information is now presented at the Program and Sub-program levels for more granularity.
  • The report's general format and terminology have been reviewed for clarity and consistency purposes.
  • Other efforts aimed at making the report more intuitive and focused on Estimates information were made to strengthen alignment with the Main Estimates.

How to read this document

RPPs are divided into four sections:

Section I: Organizational Expenditure Overview

This Organizational Expenditure Overview allows the reader to get a general glance at the organization. It provides a description of the organization's purpose, as well as basic financial and human resources information. This section opens with the new Organizational Profile, which displays general information about the department, including the names of the minister and the deputy head, the ministerial portfolio, the year the department was established, and the main legislative authorities. This subsection is followed by a new subsection entitled Organizational Context, which includes the Raison d'être, the Responsibilities, the Strategic Outcomes and Program Alignment Architecture, the Organizational Priorities and the Risk Analysis. This section ends with the Planned Expenditures, the Alignment to Government of Canada Outcomes, the Estimates by Votes and the Contribution to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy. It should be noted that this section does not display any non-financial performance information related to programs (please see Section II).

Section II: Analysis of Program(s) by Strategic Outcome(s)

This Section provides detailed financial and non-financial performance information for strategic outcomes, Programs and sub-programs. This section allows the reader to learn more about programs by reading their respective description and narrative entitled “Planning Highlights”. This narrative speaks to key services or initiatives which support the plans and priorities presented in Section I; it also describes how performance information supports the department's strategic outcome or parent program.

Section III: Supplementary Information

This section provides supporting information related to departmental plans and priorities. In  this section, the reader will find future-oriented statement of operations and a link to supplementary information tables regarding transfer payments, as well as information related to the greening government operations, internal audits and evaluations, horizontal initiatives, user fees, major crown and transformational projects, and up-front multi-year funding, where applicable to individual organizations. The reader will also find a link to the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations Report, produced annually by the Minister of Finance, which provides estimates and projections of the revenue impacts of federal tax measures designed to support the economic and social priorities of the Government of Canada.

Section IV: Organizational Contact Information

In this last section, the reader will have access to organizational contact information.

Definitions

Appropriation

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

Budgetary Vs. Non-budgetary Expenditures

Budgetary expenditures – operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to crown corporations.

Non-budgetary expenditures – net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.

Expected Result

An outcome that a program is designed to achieve.

Full-Time Equivalent (FTE)

A measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person-year charge against a departmental budget. FTEs 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.

Government of Canada Outcomes

A set of high-level objectives defined for the government as a whole.

Management Resources and Results Structure (MRRS)

A common approach and structure to the collection, management and reporting of financial and non-financial performance information.

An MRRS provides detailed information on all departmental programs (e.g.: program costs, program expected results and their associated targets, how they align to the government's priorities and intended outcomes, etc.) and establishes the same structure for both internal decision making and external accountability.

Planned Spending

For the purpose of the RPP, planned spending refers to those amounts for which a Treasury Board (TB) submission approval has been received by no later than February 1, 2014. This cut-off date differs from the Main Estimates process. Therefore, planned spending may include  amounts incremental to planned expenditure levels presented in the 2014-15 Main Estimates.

Program

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

A structured inventory of a department's programs, where programs are arranged in a hierarchical manner to depict the logical relationship between each program and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.

Spending Areas

Government of Canada categories of expenditures. There are four spending areas (social affairs, economic affairs, international affairs and government affairs) each comprised of three to five Government of Canada outcomes.

Strategic Outcome

A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the department's mandate, vision, and core functions.

Sunset Program

A time-limited program that does not have on-going funding or policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made as to whether to continue the program. (In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration).

Whole-of-Government Framework

A map of the financial and non-financial contributions of federal organizations receiving appropriations that aligns their Programs to a set of high level outcome areas defined for the government as a whole.


Table of Contents

ISSN 2292-4930

Registrar's Message

Section I: Organizational Expenditure Overview

Section II: Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Section III: Supplementary Information

Section IV: Organizational Contact Information


Registrar's Message

Picture of Roger Bilodeau, Registrar

I am pleased to present the 2014-15 Report on Plans and Priorities for the Supreme Court of Canada.

The Supreme Court of Canada is Canada's final court of appeal.  The independence of the Court, the quality of its work and the esteem in which it is held both in Canada and abroad contribute significantly as foundations for a secure, strong and democratic country founded on the Rule of Law.

The Office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court of Canada has a deep appreciation for the importance of the Court's role and focuses its efforts on a single strategic outcome, namely that ‘the administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent'.

The core work of the Office continues to be the processing and management of all cases brought to the Court.  The environment and context in which the Court manages and decides cases is continuously evolving, which in turn produces new risks and challenges.

In 2014-15, the Office will place a high priority on pursuing its work towards the adaptation of business processes in an electronic environment, with a view to continuously improving electronic access to the Court's case files and information, both for internal use by the Court as well as by the public and litigants.  In parallel with that initiative, the Office of the Registrar will pursue its focus of exploring operational efficiencies and ensuring optimal use of its resources.

Ongoing initiatives include further enhancements to the Court's overall security services, as well as the continuing work to plan a proposed refurbishment project for the aging infrastructure of the Supreme Court of Canada Building.

I wish to conclude by thanking the entire staff of the Court for their continuing hard work and enthusiasm in serving the Court and Canadians with unfailing professionalism and a dedicated sense of purpose.

 

Roger Bilodeau, Q.C.


Section I: Organizational Expenditure Overview

Organizational Profile

Minister: The Honourable Peter MacKay, P.C., Q.C., M.P.

Deputy Head: Roger Bilodeau, Q.C.

Ministerial portfolio: Justice

Year established: 1875

Main legislative authorities:

Organizational Context

Raison d'être

Created by an Act of Parliament in 1875, the Supreme Court of Canada is Canada's final court of appeal.  It serves Canadians by deciding legal issues of public importance, thereby contributing to the development of all branches of law applicable within Canada.  The independence of the Court, the quality of its work and the esteem in which it is held both in Canada and abroad contribute significantly as foundations for a secure, strong and democratic country founded on the Rule of Law.  The Supreme Court of Canada is an important national institution, positioned at the pinnacle of the judicial branch of government in Canada, separate from and independent of the executive and legislative branches of government.

The Office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court of Canada provides all necessary services and support for the Court to process, hear and decide cases.  It also serves as the interface between litigants and the Court.  The focus of this report is on the priorities and activities of the Office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court of Canada.

More detailed information on the Court's responsibilities, the hearing process and judgments is available on the Supreme Court of Canada website.

Responsibilities

In accordance with the Supreme Court Act, the Supreme Court of Canada consists of the Chief Justice and eight puisne judges, all of whom are appointed by the Governor in Council.  The Supreme Court of Canada hears appeals from the decisions of the highest courts of final resort of the provinces and territories, as well as from the Federal Court of Appeal and the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada.  In addition, the Court provides advisory opinions on questions referred to it by the Governor in Council.  The importance of the Court's decisions for Canadian society is well recognized.  The Court assures uniformity, consistency and correctness in the articulation, development and interpretation of legal principles throughout the Canadian judicial system.  Its jurisdiction is derived from the Supreme Court Act and other Acts of Parliament, such as the Criminal Code.

The Registrar, also a Governor in Council appointee, heads the Office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court of Canada and is responsible for the management of its employees, resources and activities.  The Supreme Court Act provides that the Registrar shall, under the direction of the Chief Justice, superintend the officers, clerks and employees of the Court, report and publish the judgments of the Court, as well as manage and control the library of the Court.  The organization of the Office of the Registrar is depicted in the following diagram and further explained in the paragraphs that follow.

 

Office of the Registrar's Organizational Chart

Description of image

The chart shows the organizational structure of the Court. Under the direction of the Chief Justice, who is supported by the Executive Legal Officer, the Registrar is the Deputy Head of the Court. He is responsible for the Judicial Support and Protocol Sector and the Corporate Services Sector. The Registrar is seconded by the Deputy Registrar who is responsible for the Court Operations Sector and the Communications Services.

 

Judicial Support and Protocol Services Sector: The Judicial Support and Protocol Services Sector is responsible for the delivery of all judicial support services to the Chief Justice of Canada and the eight puisne judges of the Supreme Court of Canada, including protocol, the development and delivery of integrated judicial support programs and services, judicial administration, and the Law Clerk program.

Court Operations Sector: Composed of the Law Branch, Reports Branch, Registry Branch and the Library and Information Management Branch, this sector is responsible for the planning, direction and provision of legal advice and operational support for the judges of the Supreme Court of Canada, respecting all aspects of the case management process, from the initial filing to the final judgment on an appeal.  This includes processing and recording proceedings, scheduling of cases, legal and jurilinguistic services, legal research and library services, legal editing services and publication of the Canada Supreme Court Reports.  The Registry is the point of contact between the Court and litigants and it provides information and services to counsel and litigants, including unrepresented litigants.  Information management services, including case-related and corporate records information, are also provided by the Sector.

Communications Services: The Communications Services Branch develops and implements communication strategies, plans and programs to increase public awareness and understanding of the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as to enhance internal communications within the Court.

Corporate Services Sector: Administrative and operational support for all the Court's judges and staff is provided by the Corporate Services Sector, which is responsible for: strategic, business and resource planning; corporate reporting; management accountability; integrated risk management; finance; procurement; accommodation (including telecommunications, mail and printing services); human resources; security; health and safety; emergency management and preparedness; IT services; as well as business continuity planning.

Strategic Outcome(s) and Program Alignment Architecture (PAA)

1 Strategic Outcome: The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

1.1 Program: Court Operations

1.2 Program: Processing of Payments to the Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada Pursuant to the Judges Act

Internal Services

Organizational Priorities

Priority Type1 Strategic Outcome and Program
Business Transformation Previously committed to

The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent; and

Court Operations

Note 1- Type is defined as follows: previously committed to—committed to in the first or second fiscal year prior to the subject year of the report; ongoing—committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the report; and new—newly committed to in the reporting year of the RPP or DPR.

Description
Why is this a priority?

In order to support the Court in its work and to ensure that necessary business processes and technologies are in place to enable the electronic processing of cases, thereby allowing parties to access case file documents, data and information online (based on their entitlements), and to provide the public with better access to Court information online, enabling litigants to file documents electronically through a secure portal, as well as protecting and preserving archival and historical information in an electronic format.

What are the plans for meeting this priority?
  • Modernization of critical legacy IT systems to reduce the risk of system failure and to be in a better position to achieve transformational objectives.
  • Business process mapping and analysis of potential efficiencies.
  • Review of the workflows and processes for the translation and publishing of judgments.
  • Development of new case management system requirements to support current case management processes.
  • Implementation of an enterprise information management system, including the definition of the business requirements for a seamless flow of information through an e-filing portal, document and case management systems for the preservation of case records in an electronic document and records management system.
  • Review of the policy on access to court records.
  • Investigation of e-signature requirements and scanning solutions to reduce the paper burden.
  • Conceptualization and design of key application architecture systems.
Priority Type2 Strategic Outcome
Enhancement of the security program to better meet the overall needs of the Court Previously committed to

The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Internal Services

Note 2- Type is defined as follows: previously committed to—committed to in the first or second fiscal year prior to the subject year of the report; ongoing—committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the report; and new—newly committed to in the reporting year of the RPP or DPR.

Why is this a priority?

Due to the sensitive nature of the Court's business and its high level profile as the court of last resort in Canada's judicial branch of government, it is essential to continue enhancing the Court's security program which has many components, such as physical security, information technology security and business continuity planning.

What are the plans for meeting this priority?
  • Continued update of the security policy framework and operations in line with emerging trends.
  • Organizational changes to ensure readiness and capacity in the context of a proposed building rehabilitation project.
  • Renewal of governance arrangements with the RCMP.
  • Options to acquire additional funding are being explored to support planned enhancements to the security program.
  • Continued enhancement of the Court's IT Security Posture.
Priority Type3 Strategic Outcome
Identification of cost-saving opportunities and resource management optimization Ongoing The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Internal Services

Note 3- Type is defined as follows: previously committed to—committed to in the first or second fiscal year prior to the subject year of the report; ongoing—committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the report; and new—newly committed to in the reporting year of the RPP or DPR.

Why is this a priority?

In light of the current climate of fiscal restraint, the Court, much like any other public sector organization, is faced with the continuing challenge of doing more with less.  As such, efforts will need to be dedicated in the short and medium term to ensuring that all resources are used in the most efficient and effective manner.

What are the plans for meeting this priority?
  • Identification and analysis of cost-saving opportunities and potential efficiency gains.
  • Implementation of opportunities/projects aimed at increasing efficiency and/or reducing operating costs.
  • Development of efficiency indicators to track the impact of opportunities which are implemented.
  • Implementation of additional controls aimed at improving resource management.

Risk Analysis

Key Risks
Risk Risk Response Strategy Link to Program Alignment Architecture

IT Security (cyber threats)

Unintentional or unauthorized access, use, manipulation, interruption or destruction (via electronic means) of electronic information held by the Court and the electronic and physical infrastructure used to process, communicate and/or store that information.  Risk to the security and confidentiality of judicial information and data.
  • IT security action plans
  • IT security awareness plans/staff awareness
  • Periodic vulnerabilities assessment and penetration testing
  • Regular IT Threat and Risk Assessments

The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Internal Services

Security (persons, building, information, infrastructure)

Threats to the safety of Judges, staff or visitors, and to the security of the building, information and infrastructure.  Balancing security measures required for the protection of judges, staff and visitors with the principle of an open court (the Supreme Court of Canada building is a high volume tourism destination).
  • Security governance structure
  • Security Action Plan
  • Security Risk Register under development
  • Policies and procedures updated regularly
  • Security audits/threat and risk assessments
  • Business Continuity Plan
  • Staff awareness
  • Effective relationship with the RCMP

The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Internal Services

Aging legacy IT systems and applications

Failure of aging legacy systems and applications, such as the Case Management System (CMS), as evidenced by system downtime or failure, flexibility of systems to handle new requirements or integrate with newer products, lack of ability of the Court staff to address technical issues and to interface systems and data, and systems becoming obsolete and unmanageable if the Court waits too long to redesign and port to a new platform.
  • Threat and Risk Assessments
  • Back-up operations and tools kept up-to-date
  • In-house expertise available to support CMS and operational systems
  • Identification of key significant upgrades in the Investment Plan (capital replacement), and provision of sufficient funding to meet requirements
  • Business Continuity Planning and Disaster Recovery plans
  • Ongoing maintenance of systems and equipment/systematic checks

The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Internal Services

Infrastructure failure within building

The Supreme Court of Canada building is aging, and consequently there is a growing risk of infrastructure and building systems failure as a result of continuing property deterioration.
  • Working with PWGSC on a major proposed building rehabilitation project
  • Ongoing operational relationship and communications with PWGSC
  • PWGSC space/accommodation audits and regular investigative work
  • Business Continuity Plan
Internal Services
Operating Environment

The environment within which the Office of the Registrar must carry out its activities is continually evolving.  First, to counter various ongoing pressures placed on the Court to update its facilities, systems and services, the Office of the Registrar's focus in recent years has been on courtroom modernization, information management, and on enhancing electronic access to the Court for litigants and the public.  Major technological changes have now been instituted and the Office of the Registrar is solidifying and leveraging these new technologies by ensuring that work processes are adapted to the new technological environment.  As well, in order to meet the pressures relating to aging facilities, a significant increase in time and resources has been dedicated to ongoing long term planning efforts and short term activities aimed at identifying and executing building enhancement projects.

Second, there has been a need for continued focus on the electronic exchange of information between or from the Judges, Court staff, the legal community and the public.  The public has become more technologically savvy and comfortable using electronic tools to carry out a wide variety of functions.  Consistent with this broad trend, the public expects to be able to use electronic tools to interact with the Office of the Registrar's systems to obtain information, for example, by viewing webcasts of Court hearings or accessing written submissions via the Internet.  Judges and counsel are increasingly preparing their cases using electronic documents. Meanwhile, the number of electronic documents and judgments produced by the lower courts is increasing.  While the Office of the Registrar has increased the electronic processing of cases with all main appeal documents, principal documents on applications for leave to appeal and motions being filed electronically, paper versions of the documents are still required and will be for some time.  As a result, parallel streams (paper and electronic) of case and information processing are required.  The business transformation program will now focus on providing an electronic filing portal to improve the user experience and to realize greater efficiencies and effectiveness in all sectors of the Court's operations. Implications for the Office of the Registrar include but are not limited to:

  • Storage, retention and disposal or preservation of Court information in electronic format.
  • Ability to hyperlink between documents and outside sources (e.g., from factum to public electronic legal databases).  This will require a revision of guidelines and rules.
  • Increased access by parties to a single source of information on the web (with differentiated access rights assigned to Court documents based on the status of a party in a given case, along with applicable privacy restrictions).
  • Ability to manage both paper and electronic systems at the same time.
  • Capacity to manage documents which are not provided to the Court electronically, either through scanning or alternative workflows. 
  • Need to redesign the Court's Case Management System (CMS) to align with current information management standards and e-filing, as well as to address aging technology issues.
  • The need to be conscious of the expectations of judges and other organizations in considering and introducing new technology.

Third, factors such as globalization and the growing influence of privacy, national security and human rights issues continue to increase the complexity of cases being heard.  More complicated motions are also being filed and the Court is frequently asked to deal with cases or issue rulings on an expedited basis.  In addition, a significant number of applications for leave to appeal are being filed by self-represented litigants (29% of all applications in 2013).  Addressing the particular needs of self-represented litigants causes additional pressure on all of the Court's operations.

Planned Expenditures

Budgetary Financial Resources (Planned Spending—dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2015-16
Planned Spending
2016-17
Planned Spending
31,389,794 32,538,179 31,721,311 31,774,633

 

Human Resources (Full-time equivalents—FTEs)
2014-15 2015-16 2016-17
215 215 215

 

Budgetary Planning Summary for Strategic Outcome and Programs (dollars)
Strategic Outcome(s), Program(s) and Internal Services 2011-12 Expenditures 2012-13 Expenditures 2013-14 Forecast Spending 2014-15 Main Estimates
Strategic Outcome 1: The administration of Canada’s final court of appeal is effective and independent
Court Operations 14,768,158 16,012,731 16,721,365 15,765,325
Processing of Payments to Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada Pursuant to the Judges Act 5,724,347 6,025,983 6,371,407 6,756,473
Strategic Outcome 1 Subtotal 20,492,505 22,038,714 23,092,772 22,521,798

Internal Services

Subtotal
10,962,683 9,181,104 8,576,270 8,867,996
Total 31,455,188 31,219,818 31,669,042 31,389,794

 

Budgetary Planning Summary for Strategic Outcome and Programs (dollars)
Strategic Outcome(s), Program(s) and Internal Services 2014-15 Planned Spending 2015-16 Planned Spending 2016-17 Planned Spending
Strategic Outcome 1: The administration of Canada’s final court of appeal is effective and independent
Court Operations 16,977,173 15,765,325 15,765,325
Processing of Payments to Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada Pursuant to the Judges Act 6,756,473 7,087,990 7,141,312
Strategic Outcome 1 Subtotal 23,733,646 22,853,315 22,906,637

Internal Services

Subtotal
8,804,533 8,867,996 8,867,996
Total 32,538,179 31,721,311 31,774,633

 

The Court's spending trend remains fairly stable, with a few fluctuations resulting mainly from amounts paid for the immediate settlement of severance pay. The increase in planned spending for 2014-15 is mostly attributable to increases in salaries and wages resulting from collective agreements.

Forecasted spending for 2013-14 includes all approved allotments to date as well as a forecast for the remainder of the fiscal year. Planned spending for 2014-15 is a forecast of reasonable expenditures to be incurred, based on historical trends. 

Planned spending for 2015-16 and 2016-17 is based on the 2014-15 Main Estimates.

Alignment to Government of Canada Outcomes

2014-15 Planned Spending by Whole-of-Government-Framework Spending Area (dollars)
Strategic Outcome Program Spending Area Government of Canada Outcome 2014-15 Planned Spending
1 The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent 1.1 Court Operations Government Affairs Strong and independent democratic institutions 16,977,173
  1.2 Processing of Payments to the Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada Pursuant to the Judges Act Government Affairs Strong and independent democratic institutions 6,756,473

 

Total Planned Spending by Spending Area (dollars)
Spending Area Total Planned Spending
Economic Affairs -
Social Affairs -
International Affairs -
Government Affairs 32,538,179

Departmental Spending Trend

Departmental Spending Trend Graph

Expenditure Profile

Description of image

Spending Trend: This graph illustrates the spending trend for actual spending from 2011-12 to 2012-13, forecast spending for 2013-14, and planned spending from 2014-15 to 2016-17. Financial figures are presented in dollars.

Actual Spending indicates the amounts the Department spent: $31,455,188 in 2011-12, and $31,219,818 in 2012-13.

Forecast Spending indicates the amount the Department is forecasting to spend in 2013-14: $31,669,042.

Planned Spending indicates the amounts the Department is planning to spend: $32,538,179 in 2014-15, $31,721,311 in 2015-16, and $31,774,633 in 2016-17.

 

For fiscal years 2011-12 and 2012-13, actual spending represents the actual expenditures as reported in the Public Accounts, whereas for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 fiscal years, the forecasted spending represents the planned budgetary and statutory expenditures as presented in the Future-oriented Statement of Operations. For the period of 2015-16 to 2016-17, the planned spending reflects approved funding by Treasury Board to support the institution's strategic outcome.

The decrease of $235,370 in actual spending from 2011-12 to 2012-13 is mostly attributable to a decrease in the immediate settlement of severance pay. For the two following years, both forecasted periods present slight increases in the contribution to employee benefits and statutory expenditures for the Judges' salaries, allowances and annuities. The opening balance for the 2014-15 reference levels also reflects an increase in operating funding for various collective agreement settlements, which were ratified in 2013-14.

When reasonable assumptions (such as Paylist requirements and Operating budget carry-forward) could be estimated, they have been included in the Future-oriented Statement of Operations, thus explaining the variance when comparing to 2015-16 and 2016-17.

Estimates by Vote

For information on the Supreme Court of Canada's organizational appropriations, please see the 2014-15 Main Estimates publication.

Contribution to the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS)

The 2013-16 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS) tabled on November 4, 2013, guides the Government of Canada's 2013-16 sustainable development activities and priorities for a period of three years.  The Supreme Court of Canada contributes to Theme IV - Shrinking the Environmental Footprint – Beginning with Government. For details on the Supreme Court of Canada's activities to support sustainable development, please see the Greening Government Operations Supplementary Table of this RPP.


Section II: Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Strategic Outcome: The administration of Canada's final court of appeal is effective and independent

Performance Measurement
Performance Indicators Targets Date to be Achieved
Level of satisfaction among judges regarding quality of service Satisfied Ongoing
Level of satisfaction among lawyers in the legal community regarding quality of service Satisfied Ongoing

Program 1.1: Court Operations

Description:

In order to render decisions, the Court requires the support of the Office of the Registrar in the management of cases from the receipt of an application for leave to appeal up to and including the release of a judgment on appeal. This support includes providing services to the litigants; reviewing applications for leave to appeal and preparing advice as to whether leave to appeal should be granted; preparing summaries of the leave applications; providing procedural advice; reviewing and summarizing factums where leave to appeal is granted; receiving, controlling and preserving all incoming case documentation; tracking various time periods to ensure compliance by the parties with the Rules of the Supreme Court of Canada; recording proceedings on appeals; answering queries with regard to cases; editing and summarizing decisions of the Court; publishing decisions in the Supreme Court Reports, in accordance with the Supreme Court Act; and providing law library services with an extensive collection in both print and electronic formats to support legal research undertaken by users within the Court and members of the legal community.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2014-15
Main Estimates

2014-15
Planned Spending

2015-16
Planned Spending

2016-17
Planned Spending

15,765,325 16,977,173 15,765,325 15,765,325

 

Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalent - FTEs)
2014-15 2015-16 2016-17
145 145 145

 

Performance Measurement
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Date to be Achieved
Cases processed without delay Number of weeks between filing of application for leave and decision on application for leave 14 weeks

Ongoing

Frequency: Annually

Number of months between hearing and judgment 6 months

Ongoing

Frequency: Annually

Access to Court services and information % of lawyers and unrepresented litigants in appeals with the Supreme Court of Canada that were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with Registry services 95%

Ongoing

Frequency: Every 4 years

Access to reference information % of factual/bibliographic requests for reference assistance responded to within service standard of 1 working day 95%

Ongoing

Frequency: Annually

% of complex/substantive requests for reference assistance responded by date required by client 95%

Ongoing

Frequency: Annually

% of users that were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with library services 95%

Ongoing

Frequency: Twice per year

Planning Highlights

The Supreme Court has a consistent record of meeting its objectives in processing cases without delay, providing effective access to Court services and programs, including reference information, and providing reliable courtroom services.  At the same time, the Office of the Registrar has maintained stakeholder satisfaction and high standards of service quality. 

Over the last two fiscal years, the Court has focused on its Business Transformation Initiative to address issues associated with aging mission critical systems while moving the Court towards increased electronic access and processing of cases, more effective and efficient work processes, as well as the protection and preservation of historical and archival information in electronic format. Electronic recordkeeping, through the implementation of an enterprise information management strategy, will continue to be considered as a core foundation of business transformation.  Business process mapping will look at current work processes and will identify workflows which may be streamlined or made more efficient through the introduction of new technologies.

With the enactment of amendments to its Rules of Court, the Court will be receiving key case documents in leave applications and motions in electronic format, as well as in paper format.  This will enable more case management to be done electronically, which should lead to greater efficiencies. 

With the completion of the mapping of key business processes and business requirements for electronic filing, the Business Transformation team will focus on defining more efficient processes.

Workload projections for 2014
Category Projected workload
Leave applications filed 540
Leave applications submitted to the Court 540
Appeals as of right filed 15
Appeals heard 75
Judgments 75

Program 1.2: Processing of Payments to Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada Pursuant to the Judges Act

Description:

The Judges Act is an Act respecting all federally appointed judges, and thereby applies to the judges of the Supreme Court of Canada. The Judges Act specifies the salaries of the judges of the Supreme Court of Canada and prescribes other payments to be made to judges, namely allowances for removal, representation, incidentals, conferences and seminars, as well as annuities. The Office of the Registrar processes these payments as required by the Judges Act.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2014-15
Main Estimates

2014-15
Planned Spending

2015-16
Planned Spending

2016-17
Planned Spending

6,756,473 6,756,473 7,087,990 7,141,312

 

Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalent - FTEs)
2014-15 2015-16 2016-17
0 0 0

 

Performance Measurement
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Date to be Achieved
Timely and accurate processing of various allowances to Judges of the Supreme Court of Canada pursuant to the Judges Act % of payments processed within service standards 95%

Ongoing

Frequency: Annually

% of errors on payments 2%

Ongoing

Frequency: Every 2-3 years

Average time to process payments 5 business days

Ongoing

Frequency: Every 4 years

 

Planning Highlights

The timeliness of various allowances paid to the judges of the Court is assessed internally through the maintenance of receipt and processing dates for individual claims.  In an effort to constantly improve its services, the Office of the Registrar has implemented processes to ensure accuracy and an adequate level of satisfaction. The Office of the Registrar has set targets of 95% for the timely processing of payments pursuant to the Judges Act, within service standards of five days and a 2% error rate in the accuracy of the payment of these claims. The accuracy of these payments is monitored on a regular basis.

Internal Services

Description:

Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. These groups 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; Acquisition Services; and Other Administrative Services. Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not to those provided specifically to a program.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)

2014-15
Main Estimates

2014-15
Planned Spending

2015-16
Planned Spending

2016-17
Planned Spending

8,867,996 8,804,533 8,867,996 8,867,996

 

Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalent - FTEs)
2014-15 2015-16 2016-17
70 70 70

Planning Highlights

Internal services support the Court by providing timely and responsive services that are effective and efficient as per established service standards.  Some key initiatives planned for 2014-15 are:

  • Continued improvements to the security and IT security programs, including the governance model, policies, operating procedures and practices, equipment upgrades, as well as training and awareness.
  • Continued efforts for better integration of financial and non-financial information at all levels of the organization so as to strengthen planning and reporting, and identify and explore potential operational efficiencies.
  • With the implementation of a Treasury Board Secretariat Policy on Internal Controls, a Core Control Audit (CCA) by the Office of the Comptroller General (OCG) is planned in 2014-15 to assess the operational effectiveness of some key processes in the Office of the Registrar. (i.e. Payroll, Procurement and Payments).
  • Continued collaboration with Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) regarding the Supreme Court's proposed building rehabilitation project.
  • Increased focus of Human Resources (HR) efforts on knowledge transfer/succession planning, specifically to identify essential positions and opportunities to streamline services.
  • The Information Technology Branch is an integral part of the Court's business as a partner and enabler in supporting the Business Transformation efforts.  Priorities for 2014-15 include:
    • Provide strategies and options for the upgrade of key legacy applications, including the Case Management System (CMS).
    • Strive for greater interoperability between new and older systems, and focus on getting the most out of the investments made in technologies over the last few years.
  • The Library and Information Management Branch supports the information management needs of the organization.  Priorities for 2014-15 include:
    • Assessing the Enterprise Information System Proof of Concept/prototype in support of business transformation. Implementing GCDOCS across the organization to manage documents and records of business value, including closed case-related records.
    • Ensuring that the Office of the Registrar is able to meet its obligations under the Treasury Board Secretariat's Directive on Recordkeeping.

Section III: Supplementary Information

Future-Oriented Statement of Operations

The future-oriented condensed statement of operations presented in this subsection is intended to serve as a general overview of the Office of the Registrar's operations. The forecasted financial information on expenses and revenues is prepared on an accrual accounting basis to strengthen accountability and to improve transparency and financial management. 

Because the future-oriented statement of operations is prepared on an accrual accounting basis and the forecast and planned spending amounts presented in other sections of this report are prepared on an expenditure basis, amounts will differ. 

A more detailed future-oriented statement of operations and associated notes, including a reconciliation of the net costs of operations to the requested authorities, can be found on the Supreme Court of Canada's website.

Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations
For the Year ended March 31 (dollars)
Financial Information Estimated Results
2013−14
Planned Results
2014–15
Change
Total expenses 42,015,659 42,765,251 749,592
Total revenues 4,000 5,500 1,500
Net cost of operations 42,011,659 42,759,751 748,092

The variance between the figures above and the planned spending amounts provided in other sections of the Report on Plans and Priorities is mainly explained by items such as services provided without charge by other government departments and amortization.  The increase of $749,592 in total expenses between both forecasted fiscal years is mostly attributable to salaries. These statements have been adjusted for the impact of the salary in arrears approach for salary payments starting in April 2014. The variance in net revenues is related to the estimated amount to be received upon the disposal of motor vehicles.

List of Supplementary Information Tables

The supplementary information tables listed in the 2014–15 Report on Plans and Priorities can be found on the Supreme Court of Canada's website.

Tax Expenditures and Evaluations

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 publishes cost estimates and projections for these measures annually in the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations publication. The tax measures presented in the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations publication are the sole responsibility of the Minister of Finance.


Section IV: Organizational Contact Information

Supreme Court of Canada Building
301 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0J1

General Enquiries
Telephone: (613) 995-4330
Fax: (613) 996-3063
Email: reception@scc-csc.ca

Roger Bilodeau, Q.C. - Registrar
Telephone: (613) 996-9277
Email: reception@scc-csc.ca

Mary McFadyen - Deputy Registrar
Telephone: (613) 996-7521
Email: reception@scc-csc.ca

Barbara Kincaid - General Counsel and Director General, Court Operations Sector
Telephone: (613) 996-7721
Email: law-droit@scc-csc.ca

Catherine Laforce - Director General, Corporate Services Sector
Telephone: (613) 947-0682
Email: Catherine.Laforce@scc-csc.ca

Michel Gallant - Director, Judicial Support and Protocol Sector
Telephone: (613) 996-4841
Email: Michel.Gallant@scc-csc.ca