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ARCHIVED - Transport Canada - Supplementary Tables

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Response to Parliamentary Committees and External Audits

Response to Parliamentary Committees


Response to the Auditor General (including to the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development)

For the 2009-2010 fiscal year, 2 external studies were published and 8 external audits were tabled that were specific to Transport Canada or horizontal in nature. The external entities involved were the Office of the Auditor General, the Public Service Commission, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner and the Office of the Comptroller General.

Office of the Auditor General

On May 12, 2009, the Auditor General tabled her Spring 2009 Report. Transport Canada was included in three of the nine chapters as follows:

Chapter 1, Gender-Based Analysis

Transport Canada is cited as considering its work as gender neutral and will be highlighting the requirements for gender-based analysis in a departmental guide for processing Treasury Board submissions. There were no audit recommendations directed at the department. The audit report is available online.

Chapter 3, Health and Safety in Federal Office Buildings

Transport Canada was assessed along with a number of entities to determine whether they were planning for fire emergencies in compliance with key requirements, including conducting required fire drills. The department was directed to ensure to prepare and administer its fire safety plan in accordance with established federal legislation and Treasury Board policies and standards as well as to hold all evacuation drills required. The audit report is available online.

Chapter 7, Special Examinations of Crown Corporations – 2008

This chapter included the main points for the special examinations carried out between March 1 and December 1, 2008. Five of the eight Crown corporations fell within the Transport, Infrastructure and Communities portfolio: Federal Bridge Corporation Limited (FBCL), Great Lakes Pilotage Authority (GLPA), Pacific Pilotage Authority (PPA), Parc Downsview Park Inc. (PDP) and via Rail Canada Inc. Two significant deficiencies were found for FBCL, one for GLPA and via and none for PDP or PPA. The audit report is available online.

Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development

The Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development tabled his fall report on November 3, 2009. Transport Canada was included in two of the four chapters as follows:

Chapter 1 Applying the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act

The audit focused on the government’s performance in general in complying with the environmental assessment process established by the Act for projects subject to entities’ decision-making authority as a project proponent, regulator, land administrator or funding source. The audit examined whether the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency is fulfilling its responsibilities for administering the Act, establishing a quality assurance program and maintaining a public Registry Internet Site of environmental assessments. All of the recommendations are directed at the Agency. The audit report is available online.

Chapter 4 Environmental Petitions

This chapter, which is required annually under the Auditor General Act, reports on the quantity, nature and status of petitions received this year and on the timeliness of ministerial responses to the petitioners. Transport Canada was responsible for responding to two petitions between July 1, 2008, and June 30, 2009, both of which were considered late. The audit report is available online.

External Audits (Note: These refer to other external audits conducted by the Public Service Commission of Canada or the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages)

Public Service Commission

In October 2009, the Public Service Commission (PSC) published its Study on the Data Collection of Non-Advertised Appointment Processes. The study focused on the non-advertised appointment activities of four departments for the period of April 1, 2007, to March 31, 2008. The purpose was to examine data collection practices related to those activities and the limits of the data available as well as to explore associated risks and areas for improvement for both the PSC and the organizations involved. Overall the comments about Transport Canada in this study are positive. Indeed, of the four departments included, we are cited as a "best practice" for having a centrally managed system that can easily perform customized queries. The study can be viewed online.

The Office of the Privacy Commissioner

On November 17, 2009, the Privacy Commissioner of Canada tabled her annual report in Parliament that included a summary of audit findings for work undertaken during the course of the year, and published the full audit reports on its website. The Passenger Protect Program (PPP) at Transport Canada was audited to determine whether the department had adequate controls and safeguards to collect, use, disclose, retain, dispose, protect and ensure the accuracy of personal information under the program. The audit found that Transport Canada does collect and use personal information within the PPP in accordance with the Privacy Act and the Aeronautics Act. As well, the department uses the appropriate physical measures, training programs and security clearances to safeguard personal information within the program. Nevertheless, four recommendations were made and the department responded accordingly with a management action plan. The audit report is available online.

Office of the Comptroller General

On December 15, 2009, the Office of the Comptroller General (OCG) published its horizontal audit on high-risk expenditure controls in large departments and agencies. The audit examined the risk management over expenditure controls and the practices in place in a sample of large departments including Transport Canada to determine whether expenditure management was being carried out in a cost-effective and efficient manner while maintaining the required level of control. Three recommendations were directed at Transport Canada and the department responded accordingly with a management action plan. The audit report is available online.

During 2009, Transport Canada was also included in the OCG’s horizontal audit of corporate risk profile activities in 13 departments from April 1, 2006, to December 31, 2008. The overall objective of the audit was to determine whether systems and processes related to the development of corporate risk profiles are in place and are adequate and effective to respond to changing risk environments and establish interfaces between the risk profile, business planning and performance management. There were no areas of concern found for Transport Canada and no recommendations were made to the department. Consequently, we did not prepare a management action plan. The audit report is available online.