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Office of the Chief Electoral Officer
Quarterly Financial Report 2021–2022
For the quarter ended December 31, 2021

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.

This quarterly report addresses the financial reporting requirements of both Elections Canada (EC) and the Commissioner of Canada Elections (CCE), referred to hereafter as the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer (OCEO) or the agency.

A summary description of the agency's programs can be found at https://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?section=res&dir=rep/rpp/dp2022&document=p2&lang=e.

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 20212022 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 the OCEO, 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.

The OCEO 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 results

During the third quarter of 20212022, the agency initiated the post-event activities of the 44th general election, and launched the decennial electoral boundaries redistribution exercise.

First three quarters' year-over-year variance

In the first three quarters of 20212022, budgetary expenditures totalled $503.0 million compared with $113.6 million in the same period of 20202021. The increase of $389.4 million is explained by:

  • an increase of $383.9 million in Electoral expenditures and an increase of $1.5 million in Contributions to employee benefit plans (see Table A.1), which are largely explained by the delivery of the 44th general election;
  • an increase of $1.6 million in Expenditures under the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act (see Table A.1), which is explained by activities related to the decennial electoral boundaries redistribution exercise; and
  • an increase of $2.4 million in Program expenditures (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by salaries of employees who filled vacant indeterminate positions.

Third quarter year-over-year variance

In the third quarter of 20212022, budgetary expenditures totalled $270.7 million compared with $45.5 million in the same period of 20202021. The net increase of $225.2 million is mainly explained by:

  • an increase of $223.4 million in Electoral expenditures and an increase of $0.5 million in Contributions to employee benefit plans (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by the delivery of the 44th general election;
  • an increase of $1.0 million in Expenditures under the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act (see Table A.1), which is explained by activities related to the decennial electoral boundaries redistribution exercise; and
  • a increase of $0.3 million in Program expenditures (see Table A.1), which is largely explained by salaries of employees who filled vacant indeterminate positions.
Figure 1 Third Quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)

Third Quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)

Text version of "Third Quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities (Appropriation and Statutory Authority)"

The bar graph shows a comparison of annual authorities and the first three quarter expenditures for 2020-2021 and 2021-2022.

  • "2020-2021: annual authorities $129,122 thousands; first quarter expenditures $28,538 thousands, second quarter expenditures of $39,546 thousands, third quarter expenditures of $45,505 thousands for a total of $113,589 thousands."
  • "2021-2022: annual authorities $518,161 thousands; first quarter expenditures $45,699 thousands, second quarter expenditures of $186,556 thousands, third quarter expenditures of $270,740 thousands for a total of $502,995 thousands."

*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

The OCEO'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. Any of these events can significantly change expenditures from one fiscal year to the next.

The agency is continually updating its corporate risk framework and monitoring the risk environment and has identified the following risks:

  • Security: There is a risk that serious security and cybersecurity issues compromise EC's services, the privacy of Canadians and their trust and ability to participate in the electoral process.
  • Disinformation: There is a risk that inaccurate information will compromise electors' ability to vote and/or their trust in the electoral process or the correctness of results.
  • Long-term strategy: There is a risk that the preparation demands related to a minority government context hinder the agency's ability to deliver on longer term strategies, thereby limiting the agency's ability to meet the needs of Canadians.
  • Snap election: There is a risk that a general election is called before Elections Canada completes its return to readiness activities, which may compromise election delivery.
  • Future of Work: There is a risk that the transition to a new hybrid work model does not offer the correct balance of flexibility while maintaining full productivity and meeting employee expectations.

The agency has undertaken actions to mitigate these risks. As part of its readiness planning, the agency has a new operational approach to deliver an election in a pandemic and post-pandemic context.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There was the following appointment during the third quarter of 20212022:

  • Effective December 30, 2021, Olivier Girouard was appointed Senior Director, Field Governance and Operational Readiness.

Approval by senior officials

Original signed by:

Stéphane Perrault
Chief Electoral Officer

Marc Limoges
Chief Financial Officer


Gatineau, Canada
February 28, 2022

Table A.1
Office of the chief electoral officer
Quarterly financial report
For the quarter ended December 31, 2021

Statement of Authorities (unaudited)

Fiscal year 20202021 (in thousands of dollars)
Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 1 Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 Program expenditures 2 50,187 11,983 34,654
Statutory authorities
Electoral expenditures 3 71,239 30,937 71,239
Contributions to employee benefit plans 7,430 2,476 7,430
Expenditures underElectoral Boundaries Readjustment Act 31 31 31
Salary of the Chief Electoral Officer 235 78 235
Total statutory authorities 78,935 33,522 78,935
Total authorities 129,122 45,505 113,589

Statement of Authorities (unaudited) (continued)

Fiscal year 2021–2022 (in thousands of dollars)
Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 1 Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Program expenditures 2 52,231 12,236 37,065
Statutory authorities
Electoral expenditures 3 455,068 254,418 455,068
Contributions to employee benefit plans 8,941 2,980 8,941
Expenditures under Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act 1,648 1,015 1,648
Salary of the Chief Electoral Officer 273 91 273
Total statutory authorities 465,930 258,504 465,930
Total authorities 518,161 270,740 502,995

More information is available in Table A.2.

Footnotes

1 Budgetary statutory authorities amounts in the "Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 20xx" columns reflect first, second and third quarters expenditures only, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred.

2 Program expenditures is an annual appropriation that funds the salaries of the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer's indeterminate employees.

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

Table A.2
Office of the Chief Electoral Officer
Quarterly financial report
For the quarter ended December 31, 2021

Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited)

Fiscal year 20202021 (in thousands of dollars)
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 1 Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Expenditures:
Personnel 2 83,662 25,755 68,129
Transportation and communications 1,751 1,801 1,751
Information 5,163 3,445 5,163
Professional and special services 19,684 8,115 19,684
Rentals 18,885 10,282 18,885
Repair and maintenance 115 (97) 115
Utilities, materials and supplies 2,310 1,676 2,310
Acquisition of land, buildings and works 230 86 230
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 3,264 586 3,264
Transfer payments (6,012) (6,151) 3 (6,012)
Public debt charges - - -
Other subsidies and payments 70 7 70
Total gross budgetary expenditures 129,122 45,505 113,589
Less revenues netted against expenditures:
Revenues - - -
Total revenues netted against expenditures: - - -
Total net budgetary expenditures 129,122 45,505 113,589


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

Fiscal year 2021–2022 (in thousands of dollars)
Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 1 Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Year-to-date used at quarter-end
Expenditures:
Personnel 2 320,592 157,005 305,426
Transportation and communications 40,356 12,536 40,356
Information 19,953 15,917 19,953
Professional and special services 30,482 15,760 30,482
Rentals 70,227 38,843 70,227
Repair and maintenance 410 144 410
Utilities, materials and supplies 15,453 11,529 15,453
Acquisition of land, buildings and works - - -
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 57 13 57
Transfer payments 20,011 18,798 20,011
Public debt charges - - -
Other subsidies and payments 620 195 620
Total gross budgetary expenditures 518,161 270,740 502,995
Less revenues netted against expenditures:
Revenues - - -
Total revenues netted against expenditures: - - -
Total net budgetary expenditures 518,161 270,740 502,995

Footnotes

1 Statutory expenditures in the "Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 20xx" columns reflect first, second and third quarters expenditures only, since statutory authorities are granted as expenditures are incurred.

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

3 Transfer Payments, in fiscal year 2020-2021, includes a $7.1 million credit.