open Secondary menu

Elections Canada Quarterly Financial Report 2018–2019
For the quarter ended December 31, 2018

Statement outlining results, risks and significant changes in operations, personnel and programs

Introduction

This quarterly financial report has been prepared by management, as required by section 65.1 of the Financial Administration Act and in the form and manner prescribed by the Treasury Board. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the Main Estimates. This quarterly financial report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

The Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, commonly known as Elections Canada, is an independent, non-partisan agency that reports directly to Parliament. Its mandate is to:

  • be prepared to conduct a federal general election, by-election or referendum
  • administer the political financing provisions of the Canada Elections Act
  • monitor compliance with electoral legislation
  • conduct public information campaigns on voter registration, voting and becoming a candidate
  • conduct education programs for students on the electoral process
  • provide support to the independent commissions in charge of adjusting the boundaries of federal electoral districts following each decennial census
  • carry out studies on alternative voting methods and, with the approval of parliamentarians, test alternative voting processes for future use during electoral events
  • provide assistance and co-operation in electoral matters to electoral agencies in other countries or to international organizations

A summary description of the agency's programs.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly financial report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities (see Table A.1 below) includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency that are consistent with the Main Estimates for the 2018–2019 fiscal year. This quarterly financial report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before monies can be spent by the government. Approvals are given in the form of annually approved limits through appropriation acts, or through legislation in the form of statutory spending authority for specific purposes. With respect to Elections Canada, the Canada Elections Act, the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act and the Referendum Act provide for all expenditures, with the exception of salaries of indeterminate employees, which are funded through an annual appropriation. The budgetary statutory authorities amounts presented in the tables below reflect only year-to-date expenditures, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred.

When Parliament is dissolved for the purposes of a general election, section 30 of the Financial Administration Act authorizes the Governor General, under certain conditions, to issue a special warrant authorizing the government to withdraw funds from the Consolidated Revenue Fund. A special warrant is deemed to be an appropriation for the fiscal year in which it is issued.

Elections Canada uses the full accrual method of accounting to prepare and present its annual financial statements that are part of the departmental results reporting process. However, the spending authorities voted by Parliament remain on an expenditure basis.

Highlights of fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date (YTD) results

During the first three quarters of 2018–2019, Elections Canada continued the preparatory activities for the 2019 general election and its process for asset renewal and electoral services modernization.

First three quarters year-over-year variance

In the first three quarters of 2018–2019, budgetary expenditures totalled $115.1 million compared to $86.8 million in the same period of 2017–2018. The net increase of $28.3 million is explained by:

  • a net increase of $28.9 million in electoral expenditures and employee benefit plans (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by a $20.9 million increase in expenditures for preparatory activities for the 2019 general election, a $12.1 million increase in investment in asset renewal and modernization of electoral services, a decrease of $4.1 million resulting from conducting only two by-elections (instead of eleven during the same period in 2017–2018); and
  • a net decrease of $0.6 million in program expenditures (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by a reduction due to the payment of $1.6 million in retroactive salary to indeterminate employees following the signing of collective agreements during the second quarter of 2017–2018, and by a $1.0 million increase, which is largely explained by the salaries of employees hired to fill vacant positions.

Third quarter year-over-year variance

In the third quarter of 2018–2019, budgetary expenditures totalled $45.1 million compared to $31.0 million in the same period of 2017–2018. The net increase of $14.1 million is explained by:

  • a net increase of $13.4 million in electoral expenditures and employee benefit plans (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by a $12.5 million increase in expenditures for preparatory activities for the 2019 general election, a $2.4 million increase in investment in asset renewal and modernization of electoral services, a $1.3 million increase due to a timing difference in the payment of office rent, a decrease of $2.8 million resulting from conducting only one by-election (instead of six during the same period in 2017–2018); and
  • a net increase of $0.7 million in program expenditures (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by a reduction due to the payment of $0.2 million in retroactive salary to indeterminate employees following the signing of collective agreements during the second quarter of 2017–2018, and by a $0.9 million increase, which is largely explained by the salaries of employees hired to fill vacant positions.
Figure 1 – First Three Quarters Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)

Figure 1 – First Three Quarters Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)
Text version of "Figure 1 – First Three Quarters Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)"

*Annual authorities for statutory funds reflect expenditures only for the first, second and third quarters, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred. Please refer to Tables A.1 and A.2 for details.

Risks and uncertainties

Elections Canada's expenditures are influenced by the frequency, length and number of electoral events (general elections and by-elections) and by infrequent exercises such as referendums and the electoral district boundaries readjustment process. Any of these events can significantly change expenditures from one fiscal year to the next.

Elections Canada is continually updating its corporate risk framework and monitoring the risk environment. Elections Canada has identified electoral integrity and security issues, specifically during the general election, as the key risks to delivering on its mandate in 2019–2020. These risks may compromise the privacy of Canadians and their trust and ability to participate in the electoral process. The agency has undertaken actions to mitigate these potential risks.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

No significant changes in relation to operations, personnel or programs occurred during the third quarter of 2018-2019.

Approval by senior officials

Stéphane Perrault
Chief Electoral Officer

Gatineau, Canada
March 1, 2019

Hughes St-Pierre, CPA, CMA
Chief Financial Officer


Table A.1
Elections Canada
Quarterly financial report
For the quarter ended December 31, 2018

Statement of Authorities (unaudited)

Fiscal year 2017–2018 (in thousands of dollars)
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2018Footnote 1 Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2017 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Program expendituresFootnote 2 32,302 7,536 23,663
Statutory authorities      
Electoral expendituresFootnote 3 58,103 21,809 58,103
Contributions to employee benefit plans 5,089 1,696 5,089
Salary of the Chief Electoral Officer - - -
Collection agency fees under section 17.1 of the Financial Administration Act - - -
Spending of Amounts Equivalent to Proceeds from Disposal of Surplus Moveable Crown Assets - - -
Total statutory authorities 63,192 23,505 63,192
Total authorities 95,494 31,041 86,855

Statement of Authorities (unaudited) (continued)

Fiscal year 2018–2019 (in thousands of dollars)
Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2019Footnote 1 Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2018 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Program expendituresFootnote 2 32,504 8,210 23,024
Statutory authorities
Electoral expendituresFootnote 3 85,347 34,605 85,347
Contributions to employee benefit plans 6,436 2,145 6,436
Salary of the Chief Electoral Officer 268 87 268
Collection agency fees under section 17.1 of the Financial Administration Act 1 - 1
Spending of Amounts Equivalent to Proceeds from Disposal of Surplus Moveable Crown Assets 11 11 11
Total statutory authorities 92,063 36,848 92,063
Total authorities 124,567 45,058 115,087

More information is available in Table A.2.

Footnote 1 Budgetary statutory authorities amounts in the "Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 201x" columns reflect first three quarters expenditures only, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred.

Footnote 2 Program expenditures is an annual appropriation that funds the salaries of Elections Canada's indeterminate employees.

Footnote 3 Under the Statutory authority, Electoral expenditures funds the operating expenditures of the agency and those incurred in preparing and conducting elections, reimbursing election expenses to eligible candidates and parties, and monitoring compliance to the Canada Elections Act.

Table A.2
Elections Canada
Quarterly financial report
For the quarter ended December 31, 2018

Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited)

Fiscal year 2017–2018 (in thousands of dollars)
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2018Footnote 1 Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2017 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Expenditures:
PersonnelFootnote 2 58,036 17,345 49,397
Transportation and communications 4,033 1,927 4,033
Information 1,351 334 1,351
Professional and special services 19,071 7,644 19,071
Rentals 9,224 3,076 9,224
Repair and maintenance 238 173 238
Utilities, materials and supplies 810 174 810
Acquisition of land, buildings and works 4 - 4
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 1,032 438 1,032
Transfer payments 1,674 (54) 1,674
Public debt charges - - -
Other subsidies and payments 21 (16) 21
Total gross budgetary expenditures 95,494 31,041 86,855
Less revenues netted against expenditures:
Revenues - - -
Total revenues netted against expenditures: - - -
Total net budgetary expenditures 95,494 31,041 86,855


Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited) (continued)

Fiscal year 2018–2019 (in thousands of dollars)
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2019Footnote 1 Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2018 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Expenditures:
PersonnelFootnote 2 66,577 22,596 57,097
Transportation and communications 5,287 2,525 5,287
Information 2,867 1,627 2,867
Professional and special services 33,510 10,186 33,510
Rentals 11,125 5,545 11,125
Repair and maintenance 424 157 424
Utilities, materials and supplies 795 264 795
Acquisition of land, buildings and works - - -
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 2,934 2,101 2,934
Transfer payments 1,014 44 1,014
Public debt charges - - -
Other subsidies and payments 34 13 34
Total gross budgetary expenditures 124,567 45,058 115,087
Less revenues netted against expenditures:
Revenues - - -
Total revenues netted against expenditures: - - -
Total net budgetary expenditures 124,567 45,058 115,087

Footnote 1 Statutory expenditures in the "Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 201x" columns reflect first three quarters expenditures only, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred.

Footnote 2 Personnel expenditures include both Vote 1 – Program expenditures and budgetary statutory authorities; all other categories of expenditures are solely budgetary statutory.