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Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended September 30, 2023

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2023–24 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates.  Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2023–24 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended September 30, 2023.

NSIRA Secretariat spent approximately 33% of its authorities by the end of the second quarter, compared with 23% in the same quarter of 2022–23 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2023–24 and Q2 2022–23

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2023–24 and Q2 2022–23
  2023-24 2022-23
Total Authorities $24.3 $29.7
Q2 Expenditures $3.8 $3.6
Year-to-Date Expenditures $8.1 $6.9

Significant changes to authorities

As at September 30, 2023, Parliament had approved $24.3 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA Secretariat for 2023–24 compared with $29.7 million as of September 30th, 2022, for a net decrease of $5.4 million or 18.2% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2023

Graph: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2023 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2023 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2022-23 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2023 Fiscal year 2023-24 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2024
Vote 1 – Operating 28.0 22.6
Statutory 1.7 1.7
Total budgetary authorities 29.7 24.3

*Details may not sum to totals due to rounding*

The decrease of $5.4 million in authorities is mostly explained by a gradual reduction in NSIRA Secretariat’s ongoing operating funding due to an ongoing construction project nearing completion.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The second quarter expenditures totalled $3.8 million for an increase of $0.2 million when compared with $3.6 million spent during the same period in 2022–2023.  Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2023–24: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2023 Fiscal year 2022–23: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 3,014 2,903 111 4%
Transportation and communications 62 70 (8) (11%)
Information 4 0 4 100%
Professional and special services 504 578 (74) (13%)
Rentals 25 39 (14) (36%)
Repair and maintenance 3 33 (30) (91%)
Utilities, materials and supplies 50 12 38 317%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 4 4 0 0%
Other subsidies and payment 118 3 115 3833%
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,784 3,642 142 4%

Repair and maintenance

The decrease of $30,000 is due to the timing of invoicing for an ongoing capital project.

Utilities, materials and supplies

The increase of $38,000 is due to a temporarily unreconciled suspense account.

Other subsidies and payments

The increase of $115,000 is explained by an increase in payroll system overpayments which were subsequently resolved.

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

The year-to-date expenditures totalled $8.1 million for an increase of $1.1 million (17%) when compared with $6.9 million spent during the same period in 2022–23. Table 2 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2023–24: year-to-date expenditures as of September 30, 2023 Fiscal year 2022–23: year-to-date expenditures as of September 30, 2022 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 5,900 5,248 652 12%
Transportation and communications 192 114 78 68%
Information 4 5 (1) (20%)
Professional and special services 1,669 1,424 245 17%
Rentals 73 49 24 49%
Repair and maintenance 27 64 (37) (58%)
Utilities, materials and supplies 57 28 29 104%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 52 13 39 300%
Other subsidies and payment 122 1 121 12100%
Total gross budgetary expenditures 8,096 6,946 1,150 17%

Personnel

The increase of $652,000 relates to an increase in average salary and an increase in full time equivalent (FTE) positions.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $78,000 is due to the timing of invoicing for the organization’s internet connections.

Professional and special services

The increase of $245,000 is explained by an increase in IT support costs and guard services associated to a capital construction project.

Repair and maintenance

The decrease of $37,000 is due to the timing of invoicing for an ongoing capital project.

Utilities, materials and supplies

The increase of $29,000 is due to a temporarily unreconciled suspense account.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $39,000 is mainly explained by the one-time purchase of a specialized laptop.

Other subsidies and payments

The increase of $121,000 is explained by an increase in payroll system overpayments which were subsequently resolved.

Risks and uncertainties

The Secretariat assisted NSIRA in its work with the departments and agencies subjected to reviews to ensure a timely and unfettered access to all the information necessary for the conduct of reviews. While work remains to be done on this front, we acknowledge the improvements in cooperation and support to the independent review process demonstrated by some reviewees.

There is a risk that the funding received to offset pay increases anticipated over the coming year will be insufficient to cover the costs of such increases and the year-over-year cost of services provided by other government departments/agencies is increasing significantly.

NSIRA Secretariat is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA Secretariat’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been two new Governor-in-Council appointments during the Second quarter, Ms. Colleen Swords and Mr. Jim Chu. 

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Secretariat Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Marc-André Cloutier
Director General, Corporate Services, Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2023–24 Fiscal year 2022–23
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2024 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2023 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 22,564 3,345 7,218 27,931 3,210 6,082
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,755 439 878 1,728 432 864
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 24,319 3,784 8,096 29,659 3,642 6,946

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2023–24 Fiscal year 2022–23
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2024 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2023 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2023 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,303 3,014 5,900 13,245 2,903 5,248
Transportation and communications 650 62 192 597 70 114
Information 371 4 4 372 0 5
Professional and special services 4,906 504 1,669 4,914 578 1,424
Rentals 271 25 73 271 39 49
Repair and maintenance 4,580 24 27 9,722 33 64
Utilities, materials and supplies 73 50 57 173 12 28
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 132 4 52 232 4 13
Other subsidies and payments 33 118 122 133 3 1
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
24,319 3,784 8,096 29,659 3,642 6,946

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended June 30, 2023

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2023–24 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates.  Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2023–24 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended June 30, 2023.

NSIRA spent approximately 19% of its authorities by the end of the first quarter, compared with 12% in the same quarter of 2022–23 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2023–24 and Q1 2022–23

Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2023–24 and Q1 2022–23
  2023-24 2022-23
Total Authorities $23.0 $28.3
Q1 Expenditures $4.3 $3.3

Significant changes to authorities

As of June 30, 2023, Parliament had approved $23.0 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA for 2023–24 compared with $28.3 million as of June 30th, 2022, for a net decrease of $5.3 million or 8.1% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2023

Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2023 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2022-23 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2023 Fiscal year 2023-24 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2024
Vote 1 – Operating 26.5 21.3
Statutory 1.7 1.8
Total budgetary authorities 28.2 23.0

*Details may not sum to totals due to rounding*

The decrease of $5.3 million in authorities is mostly explained by a reduction in capital funding for infrastructure projects.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The first quarter expenditures totalled $4.3 million for an increase of $1 million when compared with $3.3 million spent during the same period in 2022–23.  Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2023–24: expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2023 Fiscal year 2022–23: expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,886 2,345 541 23%
Transportation and communications 130 44 86 195%
Information 0 5 (5) 100%
Professional and special services 1,165 846 319 38%
Rentals 48 10 38 380%
Repair and maintenance 24 31 (7) (23%)
Utilities, materials and supplies 7 16 (9) (56%)%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 48 9 39 433%
Other subsidies and payment 4 (2) (6) (300%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 4,312 3,304 1,008 31%

Personnel

The increase of $541,000 is largely caused by an increase in cost per FTE and change in the timing of Member’s pay.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $86,000 is explained by a change in the timing of invoicing for the internet connection.

Professional and special services

The increase of $319,000 is mainly explained by an increase in the cost of the maintenance and services in support of our classified IT network infrastructure. It also relates to the use of guard services for office accommodation fit-up.

Rentals

The increase of $38,000 is explained by a change in the timing of invoicing for the rent for temporary office space.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $39,000 is explained by a one-time purchase of a specialized laptop along with a wall mounted charging station and warranty.

Risks and uncertainties

The Secretariat assisted NSIRA in its work with the departments and agencies subjected to reviews to ensure a timely and unfettered access to all the information necessary for the conduct of reviews. While work remains to be done on this front, we acknowledge the improvements in cooperation and support to the independent review process demonstrated by some reviewees.

There is a risk that the funding received to offset pay increases anticipated over the coming year will be insufficient to cover the costs of such increases and the year-over-year cost of services provided by other government departments/agencies is increasing significantly.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the first quarter.

Mr. Pierre Souligny, NSIRA’s Senior Director, Corporate Services and CFO since 2020, has retired. He has been replaced by Mr. Marc-André Cloutier.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2023–24 Fiscal year 2022–23
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2024 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2023 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 21,254 3,873 3,873 26,523 2,872 2,872
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,728 439 439 1,728 432 432
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 23,009 4,312 4,312 28,251 3,304 3,304

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2023–24 Fiscal year 2022–23
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2024 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2023 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2023 Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,303 2,886 2,886 13,245 2,345 2,345
Transportation and communications 650 130 130 597 44 44
Information 372 0 0 372 5 5
Professional and special services 3,596 1,165 1,165 3,506 846 846
Rentals 271 48 48 271 10 10
Repair and maintenance 4,580 24 24 9,722 31 31
Utilities, materials and supplies 73 7 7 103 3 3
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 132 48 48 232 9 9
Other subsidies and payments 33 4 4 133 (2) (2)
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
23,009 4,312 4,312 28,251 3,304 3,304

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended December 31, 2022

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2022–23 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates.  Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2022–23 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended December 31st, 2022.

NSIRA spent approximately 39% of its authorities by the end of the third quarter, compared with 33% in the same quarter of 2021–22 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2022–23 and Q3 2021–22

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2022–23 and Q3 2021–22
  2022-23 2021-22
Total Authorities $29.8 $31.3
Q3 Expenditures $4.7 $3.7
Year-to-Date Expenditures $11.6 $10.2

Significant changes to authorities

As at December 31, 2022, Parliament had approved $29.8 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA for 2022–23 compared with $31.3 million as of December 31st, 2021, for a net decrease of $1.5 million or 4.8% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2022

Graph: Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2022 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2022 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022 Fiscal year 2022-23 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2023
Vote 1 – Operating 29.6 28.1
Statutory 1.7 1.7
Total budgetary authorities 31.3 29.8

*Details may not sum to totals due to rounding*

The decrease of $1.5 million in authorities is mostly explained by a gradual reduction in NSIRA’s ongoing operating funding.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The third quarter expenditures totalled $4.7 million for an increase of $1.0 million (26%) when compared with $3.7 million spent during the same period in 2021–2022.  Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2022-23: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2022 Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,503 2,654 (151) (6%)
Transportation and communications 82 93 (11) (12%)
Information 4 24 (20) (83%)
Professional and special services 1,271 404 867 215%
Rentals 83 64 19 30%
Repair and maintenance 685 398 287 72%
Utilities, materials and supplies 21 13 8 62%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 2 72 (70) (97%)
Other subsidies and payment 17 (21) 38 (181%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 4,668 3,701 967 26%

Information

The decrease of $20,000 is explained by a decrease in the use of communications consultants.

Professional and special services

The increase of $867,000 is explained by the timing of payment for NSIRA’s internal support services agreement with the Privy Council Office. In fiscal year 2021-2022 most of the payments went through in the fourth quarter however in fiscal year 2022-2023, most of the payments went through in the third quarter.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $287,000 is due to fit-up costs for one large infrastructure project that ramped up in 2022-2023.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $70,000 is explained by several one-time computer equipment and storage solution purchases in fiscal year 2021-2022.

Other subsidies and payments

The increase of $38,000 is explained by an increase in payroll system overpayments.

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

The year-to-date expenditures totalled $11.6 million for an increase of $1.4 million (14%) when compared with $10.2 million spent during the same period in 2021–22. Table 2 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2022-23: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2022 Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,503 2,654 (151) (6%)
Transportation and communications 82 93 (11) (12%)
Information 4 24 (20) (83%)
Professional and special services 1,271 404 867 215%
Rentals 83 64 19 30%
Repair and maintenance 685 398 287 72%
Utilities, materials and supplies 21 13 8 62%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 2 72 (70) (97%)
Other subsidies and payment 17 (21) 38 (181%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 4,668 3,701 967 26%

Transportation and communications

The increase of $66,000 is due to increased travel, as travel restrictions due to COVID-19 are no longer in place in Canada.

Information

The decrease of $32,000 is explained by a decrease in the use of communications consultants and electronic subscriptions.

Professional and special services

The increase of $1,255,000 is mainly due to increases in information technology support services by the Communications Security Establishment ($173K), and more advanced billing for Internal Support Services by the Privy Council Office ($722K).

Rentals

The increase of $51,000 is mainly explained by the purchase of Visio Pro, Project Pro, and FoxIT software licenses in 2022-2023.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $138,000 is due to fit-up costs for one large infrastructure project that ramped up in 2022-2023.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $431,000 is mainly explained by several one-time computer equipment purchases made in the first and second quarter of 2021-2022.

Risks and uncertainties

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to conduct its reviews and complaints investigations is closely tied to the capacity of the reviewed or investigated departments and agencies to respond to NSIRA’s demands. While most pandemic constraints have subsided, there continues to be recruitment challenges in a tight labour market.  To address this challenge, NSIRA is experimenting with hybrid workplace approaches, launching internal career development programs and focusing on onboarding practices to attract and retain talent.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the third quarter.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 28,063 4,236 10,318 29,615 3,275 8,922
Budgetary statutory authorities  
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,728 432 1,296 1,705 426 1,278
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 29,791 4,668 11,614 31,319 3,701 10,200

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended December 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 Expended during the quarter ended December 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,389 2,503 7,751 13,222 2,654 7,407
Transportation and communications 597 82 196 673 93 130
Information 372 4 9 375 24 41
Professional and special services 4,902 1,271 2,695 7,029 404 1,440
Rentals 271 83 132 188 64 81
Repair and maintenance 9,722 685 749 8,737 398 611
Utilities, materials and supplies 173 21 49 103 13 25
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 232 2 15 991 72 446
Other subsidies and payments 133 17 18 0 (21) 19
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
29,791 4,668 11,614 31,319 3,701 10,200

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended September 30th, 2022

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2022–23 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates.  Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2022–23 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended September 30, 2022. 

NSIRA spent approximately 23% of its authorities by the end of the second quarter, compared with 21% in the same quarter of 2021–22 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2022–23 and Q2 2021–22

Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2022–23 and Q2 2021–22
  2022-23 2021-22
Total Authorities $29.7 $31.3
Q2 Expenditures $3.6 $3.7
Year-to-Date Expenditures $6.9 $6.5

Significant changes to authorities

As at September 30, 2022, Parliament had approved $29.7 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA for 2022–23 compared with $31.3 million as of September 30th, 2021, for a net decrease of $1.6 million or 5.1% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2022

Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2022 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022 Fiscal year 2022-23 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2023
Vote 1 – Operating 29.6 28.0
Statutory 1.7 1.7
Total budgetary authorities 31.3 29.7

*Details may not sum to totals due to rounding*

The decrease of $1.6 million in authorities is mostly explained by a gradual reduction in NSIRA’s ongoing operating funding.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The second quarter expenditures totalled $3.6 million for a decrease of $0.1 million when compared with $3.7 million spent during the same period in 2021–2022.  Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2022-23: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,903 2,441 462 19%
Transportation and communications 70 24 46 192%
Information 0 15 (15) (100%)
Professional and special services 578 840 (262) (31%)
Rentals 39 17 22 129%
Repair and maintenance 33 205 (172) (84%)
Utilities, materials and supplies 12 9 3 33%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 4 158 (154) (97%)
Other subsidies and payment 3 28 (25) (90%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,642 3,737 (95) (3%)

Personnel

The increase of $462,000 in personnel is due to an increase in average salary and an increase of 2 full time equivalent (FTE) positions.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $46,000 relates to increased travel, as travel restrictions due to COVID-19 are no longer in place in Canada.

Information

The decrease of $15,000 is explained by a decrease in the use of communications consultants.

Professional and special services

The decrease of $262,000 is explained by the timing of payment for NSIRA’s IT support services. In fiscal year 2021-2022 most of the payments went through in the second quarter however in fiscal year 2022-2023, the majority of the payments went through in the first quarter.

Rentals

The increase of $22,000 is explained by an increase in the second quarter invoice for NSIRA’s Memorandum of Understanding with Treasury Board for support costs of our financial system.

Repair and maintenance

The decrease of $172,000 is due to fit-up costs for two projects that were completed in fiscal year 2021-2022.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $154,000 is explained by a one-time computer equipment purchase in regard to a network extension in fiscal year 2021-2022.

Other subsidies and payments

The decrease of $25,000 is explained by a reduction in payroll system overpayments. 

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

The year-to-date expenditures totalled $6.9 million for an increase of $0.4 million (7%) when compared with $6.5 million spent during the same period in 2021–22. Table 2 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2022-23: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 5,249 4,753 495 10%
Transportation and communications 114 37 77 208%
Information 5 17 (12) (71%)
Professional and special services 1,424 1,036 388 37%
Rentals 49 17 32 188%
Repair and maintenance 64 213 (149) (70%)
Utilities, materials and supplies 28 12 16 133%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 13 374 (361) (97%)
Other subsidies and payment 1 40 (39) (98%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 6,946 6,499 447 7%

Personnel

The increase of $495,000 relates to an increase in average salary and an increase of 2 full time equivalent (FTE) positions.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $77,000 is due to increased travel, as travel restrictions due to COVID-19 are no longer in place in Canada.

Information

The decrease of $12,000 is explained by a decrease in the use of communications consultants and electronic subscriptions.

Professional and special services

The increase of $388,000 is mainly due to increases in information technology support services by the Communications Security Establishment ($173K), IT/Telecom consultants ($126K) and translations services ($91K).  

Rentals

The increase of $32,000 is mainly explained by an increase in the second quarter invoice for NSIRA’s Memorandum of Understanding with Treasury Board for support costs of our financial system, and the billing for the rent of our temporary office swing space.

Repair and maintenance

The decrease of $149,000 is explained by a decrease in the fit-up costs as a result of the completion of two projects in fiscal year 2021-2022.

Utilities, materials and supplies

The increase of $16,000 is due to an increase in the purchasing of office supplies and unreconciled MasterCard payments.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $361,000 is mainly explained by several one-time computer equipment purchases made in the first and second quarter of 2021-2022.

Other subsidies and payments

The decrease of $39,000 is explained by a reduction in payroll system overpayments and no salary advances issued over the last year. 

Risks and uncertainties

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to conduct its reviews and complaints investigations is closely tied to the capacity of the reviewed or investigated departments and agencies to respond to NSIRA’s demands. While most pandemic constraints have subsided, there continues to be recruitment challenges in a tight labour market.  To address this challenge, NSIRA is experimenting with hybrid workplace approaches, launching internal career development programs and focusing on onboarding practices to attract and retain talent.  

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the second quarter.  

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 27,931 3,210 6,082 29,615 3,311 5,647
Budgetary statutory authorities  
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,728 432 864 1,705 426 852
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 29,659 3,642 6,946 31,319 3,737 6,499

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,245 2,903 5,248 13,222 2,441 4,753
Transportation and communications 597 70 144 673 24 37
Information 372 0 5 375 15 17
Professional and special services 4,914 578 1,424 7,029 840 1,036
Rentals 271 39 49 188 17 17
Repair and maintenance 9,722 33 64 8,737 205 213
Utilities, materials and supplies 173 12 28 103 9 12
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 232 4 13 991 158 12
Other subsidies and payments 133 3 1 0 28 40
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
29,659 3,642 6,946 31,319 3,737 6,499

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended June 30, 2022

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2022–23 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2022–23 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended June 30, 2022.

NSIRA spent approximately 12% of its authorities by the end of the first quarter, compared with 9% in the same quarter of 2021–22 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2022–23 and Q1 2021–22

Graph: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2022 - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2022–23 and Q1 2021–22
  2022-23 2021-22
Total Authorities $28.3 $30.2
Q1 Expenditures $3.3 $2.8

Significant changes to authorities

As at June 30, 2022, Parliament had approved $28.3 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA for 2022–23 compared with $30.2 million as of June 30th, 2021, for a net decrease of $1.9 million or 6.3% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2022

Graph: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2022 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2022 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022 Fiscal year 2022-23 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2023
Vote 1 – Operating 28.5 26.5
Statutory 1.7 1.7
Total budgetary authorities 30.2 28.3

*Details may not sum to totals due to rounding*

The decrease of $1.9 million in authorities is mostly explained by a gradual reduction in NSIRA’s ongoing operating funding.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The first quarter expenditures totaled $3.3 million for an increase of $0.5 million when compared with $2.8 million spent during the same period in 2021–22. Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2022–23: expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Fiscal year 2021–22: expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2021     Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,345 2,312 33 1%
Transportation and communications 44 13 31 23*
Information 5 2 3 150%
Professional and special services 846 196 650 332%
Rentals 10 0 10
Repair and maintenance 31 8 23 288%
Utilities, materials and supplies 16 3 13 433%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 9 216 (207) (96%)
Other subsidies and payment (2) 12 (14) (117%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,304 2,762 541 20%

Transportation and communications

The increase of $31,000 relates to increased travel, as travel restrictions due to COVID-19 are no longer in place in Canada.

Professional and special services

The increase of $650,000 is explained by a change in the timing of invoicing for the maintenance and services in support of our classified IT network infrastructure.

Rentals

The increase of $10,000 is explained by rent for temporary office space and software support licenses.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $23,000 is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs.

Utilities, materials and supplies

The increase of $13,000 is explained by the acquisition office supplies.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $207,000 is explained by a one-time bulk purchase of monitors and other computer equipment made in the first quarter of 2021-22.

Other subsidies and payments

The decrease of $14,000 is explained by a reduction in emergency salary advances and payroll system overpayments. NSIRA is showing a negative balance here because of the acquisition card rebates.

Risks and uncertainties

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to conduct its reviews and complaints investigations is closely tied to the capacity of the reviewed or investigated departments and agencies to respond to NSIRA’s demands. While most pandemic constraints have subsided, there continues to be recruitment challenges in a tight labour market. To address this challenge, NSIRA is experimenting with hybrid workplace approaches, launching internal career development programs and focusing on onboarding practices to attract and retain talent.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been two new Governor-in-Council appointments during the first quarter, Dr. Foluke Laosebikan and Mr. Matthew Cassar. Existing member, Mr. Craig Forcese, has been named Vice Chair of NSIRA.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 26,523 2,872 2,872 28,490 2,3 5,647
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,728 432 432 1,705 426 426
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 28,251 3,304 3,304 30,195 2,762 2,762

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2023 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2022 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,245 2,345 2,345 13,222 2,312 2,312
Transportation and communications 597 44 44 673 13 13
Information 372 5 5 375 2 2
Professional and special services 3,506 846 846 5,904 196 196
Rentals 271 10 10 188 0 0
Repair and maintenance 9,722 31 31 8,737 8 8
Utilities, materials and supplies 173 16 16 103 3 3
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 232 9 9 991 216 216
Other subsidies and payments 133 (2) (2) 0 12 12
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
28,251 3,304 3,304 30,195 2,762 2,762

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended December 31, 2021

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2021–22 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body that reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description NSIRA’s program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. Information on NSIRA’s mandate can be found on its website.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the agency’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the agency, consistent with the 2021–22 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special-purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended December 31, 2021.

NSIRA spent approximately 33% of its authorities by the end of the third quarter, compared with 28% in the same quarter of 2020–21 (see graph 1).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2021–22 and Q3 2020–21

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2021–22 and Q3 2020–21
  2021-22 2020-21
Total Authorities $31.3 $24.0
Q3 Expenditures $3.7 $2.7
Year-to-Date Expenditures $10.2 $6.6

Significant changes to authorities

As at December 31, 2021, Parliament had approved $31.3 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA for 2021–22 compared with $24.0 million as of December 31, 2020, for a net increase of $7.3 million or 30.4% (see graph 2).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2021

Graph: Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2021 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2021 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2020-21 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2021 Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022
Vote 1 – Operating $22.6 $29.6
Statutory $1.4 $1.7
Total budgetary authorities $24.0 $31.3

The increase of $7.3 million in authorities is mostly explained by the ramp-up of approved funding for the mandate of NSIRA and the approval of a funding re-profile into fiscal year 2021–22 for accommodation and infrastructure projects.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The third quarter expenditures totaled $3.7 million for an increase of $1.0 million when compared with $2.7 million spent during the same period in 2020–21. Table 1 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object (in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Fiscal year 2020-21: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,654 1,732 922 53%
Transportation and communications 93 19 74 389%
Information 24 37 (13) (35%)
Professional and special services 404 389 15 4%
Rentals 64 41 23 56%
Repair and maintenance 398 189 209 111%
Utilities, materials and supplies 13 21 (8) (38%)
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 72 258 (185) (72%)
Other subsidies and payment (22) (13) (9) 69%
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,700 2,671 1,029 39%

Details may not sum to totals due to rounding

Personnel

The increase of $922,000 relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s mandate.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $74,000 relates to new internet connections as part of the office accommodation fit-up costs.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $209,000 is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The decrease of $185,000 is mainly explained by capital costs not needed in 2021–22 because they were ramp-up and pandemic-related expenditures in 2020–21: buying furniture acquisitions, redesigning office space to accommodate more employees, and equipping NSRIA personnel to work from home.

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

The year-to-date expenditures totaled $10.2 million for an increase of $3.6 million (54%) when compared with $6.6 million spent during the same period in 2020–21. Table 2 presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Fiscal year 2020-21: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 7,407 5,072 2,335 46%
Transportation and communications 130 37 93 251%
Information 41 78 (37) (47%)
Professional and special services 1,440 731 709 97%
Rentals 81 104 (23) (22%)
Repair and maintenance 611 247 364 147%
Utilities, materials and supplies 25 28 (3) (11%)
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 446 300 146 49%
Other subsidies and payment 18 28 (10) (36%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 10,199 6,626 3,573 54%

Details may not sum to totals due to rounding

Personnel

The increase of $2,335,000 relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s mandate.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $93,000 is mainly explained by the installation of new internet connections as part of the office accommodation fit-up costs, and some relocation and travel expenses.

Professional and special services

The increase of $709,000 is mainly due to information technology support services by the Communications Security Establishment and an increased use of procurement advisory services.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $364,000 is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $146,000 is mainly explained by informatics equipment acquisitions.

Risks and uncertainties

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to conduct its reviews and complaints investigations is closely tied to the capacity of the reviewed or investigated departments and agencies to respond to NSIRA’s demands. The pandemic continues to hinder the agency’s ability to conduct classified work in the workplace. When combined with existing resource constraints of the reviewed departments and agencies, the conduct of reviews continues to be delayed.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach and timelines for the execution of its mandated activities.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the third quarter.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2022–23 Fiscal year 2021–22
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 29,615 3,274 8,921 22,565 2,300 5,513
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,705 426 1,278 1,484 371 1,113
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 31,319 3,700 10,199 24,049 2,671 6,626

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2021–22 Fiscal year 2020–21
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 Expended during the quarter ended December 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,222 2,654 7,407 11,510 1,732 5,072
Transportation and communications 673 93 130 1,162 19 37
Information 375 24 41 364 37 78
Professional and special services 7,029 404 1,440 3,250 389 731
Rentals 188 64 81 237 41 104
Repair and maintenance 8,737 398 611 6,681 189 247
Utilities, materials and supplies 103 13 25 173 21 28
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 991 72 446 393 257 300
Other subsidies and payments 0 (22) 18 278 (13) 28
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
31,319 3,700 10,199 24,049 2,671 6,626

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended September 30th, 2021

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2021-22 Main Estimates.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review. 

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body, which reports to Parliament. Established in July 2019, NSIRA is responsible for conducting reviews of the Government of Canada’s national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and their activities.

A summary description of the program activities of NSIRA can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. For more information on NSIRA’s mandate, please visit its website at https://nsira-ossnr.gc.ca.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the department’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the department, consistent with the 2021-22 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before money 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 authorities for specific purposes.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended September 30, 2021.

NSIRA spent approximately 21% of its authorities by the end of the second quarter, compared with 20% in the same quarter of 2020-21 (see graph 1, below).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2021–22 and Q2 2020–21

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2021–22 and Q2 2020–21
  2021-22 2020-21
Total Authorities $31.3 $20.5
Q2 Expenditures $3.7 $2.7
Year-to-Date Expenditures $6.5 $4.0

Significant changes to authorities

As at September 30, 2021, Parliament had approved $31.3 million in total authorities for use by NSIRA 2021-22 compared with $20.4 million as of September 30, 2020, for a net increase of $10.9 million or 53.4% (see graph 2, below).

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2021

Graph: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2021 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2021 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2020-21 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2021 Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022
Vote 1 – Operating $19.2 $29.6
Statutory $1.2 $1.7
Total budgetary authorities $20.4 $31.3

The increase of $10.9 million in authorities is mostly explained by the ramp-up of approved funding for the mandate of NSIRA and the approval of a funding reprofile into fiscal year 2021-22 for accommodation and infrastructure projects. 

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The second quarter expenditures totalled $3.7 million for an increase of $1.0 million when compared with $2.7 million spent during the same period in 2020- 21. Table 1 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Variances in expenditures by standard object(in thousands of dollars) Fiscal year 2021-22: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Fiscal year 2020-21: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,441 2,229 212 10%
Transportation and communications 24 12 12 100%
Information 15 (9) 24 (267%)
Professional and special services 840 275 565 205%
Rentals 17 64 (47) (73%)
Repair and maintenance 205 4 201 100%
Utilities, materials and supplies 9 (3) 12 (400%)
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 158 43 115 100%
Other subsidies and payment 28 42 (14) 100%
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,737 2,658 1,079 41%

Personnel

The increase of $0.2 million relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s departmental mandate. 

Professional and special services

The increase of $0.6 million is mainly due to an agreement for ongoing information technology (IT) support services with a partnering federal organization.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $0.2 million is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs. 

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $0.1 million is mainly explained by the acquisitions of informatics hardware.  

Risks and uncertainties

The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on NSIRA’s ability to grow the organization in a way as would be expected under its new mandate. The physical distancing requirements decreased the ability of staff to concurrently work with departments and agencies subject to reviews.

The ability to hire a sufficient number of qualified personnel within relevant timelines remains a short- and medium-term risk for NSIRA, particularly given the specialized knowledge and skillset that many positions require. This is further compounded by the requirement for candidates to obtain a Top Secret security clearance, which can incur significant delays, especially during the pandemic.

While NSIRA has been able to secure temporary space to address its immediate space requirements, the pandemic caused significant delays for the fit-up of this space. NSIRA is working closely with Public Services and Procurement Canada and Shared Services Canada to expedite the office expansion plans.

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to do its work and speak to the relevant stakeholders to understand policies, operations and ongoing issues is closely tied to the capacity of the reviewed departments and agencies to respond to the demands of NSIRA. The pandemic impacts including the ability to conduct classified work in the workplace combined with existing resource constraints of the reviewed departments and agencies continue to delay the conduct of reviews.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach to the execution of its mandate.  

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

The pandemic forced changes in the way NSIRA conducts operations. The requirement for physical distancing and the existing challenge with respect to the high security zone accommodation has led NSIRA to authorize staff to work with non-sensitive files from home.

In late March 2021, NSIRA was a victim of a cyber attack on its public network. The attack did not affect its classified networks. That attack led NSIRA to change its IT operating model; since then, NSIRA has been using the Privy Council Office IT infrastructure to conduct activities that are unclassified and up to protected B activities.

The Honourable Marie Deschamps, C.C., currently a member of the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA), became the chair of the NSIRA, effective August 11, 2021.

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the second quarter.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Senior Director, Corporate Services, Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2021–22 Fiscal year 2020–21
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 29,615 3,311 5,647 19,217 2,285 3,213
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,705 426 852 1,237 371 742
Total budgetary authorities 31,319 3,737 6,499 20,453 2,656 3,955

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2021–22 Fiscal year 2020–21
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,222 2,441 4,753 9,592 2,229 3,340
Transportation and communications 673 24 37 968 12 19
Information 375 15 17 303 (9) 41
Professional and special services 7,029 840 1,036 2,708 275 343
Rentals 188 17 17 197 64 64
Repair and maintenance 8,737 205 213 5,945 4 57
Utilities, materials and supplies 103 9 12 144 (3) 7
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 991 158 374 327 43 43
Other subsidies and payments 0 28 40 268 42 42
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
31,319 3,737 6,499 20,453 2,656 3,955

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended June 30, 2021

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2021-22 Main Estimates.

A summary description of the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency Secretariat (NSIRA) program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. For information on the mandate of NSIRA, please visit its website at https://nsira-ossnr.gc.ca.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review.

Mandate

The NSIRA is an independent external review body, which reports to Parliament. NSIRA was established in July of 2019 and is responsible to conduct reviews of the Government of Canada national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and activities. NSIRA replaces the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC), which reviewed CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) activities as well as those related to the revocation or denial of security clearances. It also hears complaints regarding the Communication Security Establishment (CSE), as well as national security-related complaints regarding the RCMP.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the department’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the department, consistent with the 2021-22 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before moneys 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.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended June 30, 2021.

NSIRA spent approximately 9% of its authorities by the end of the first quarter, compared to 5% in the same quarter of 2020-21 (see graph 1 below).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2021–22 and Q1 2020–21

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q1 2021–22 and Q1 2020–21
  2021-22 2020-21
Total Authorities $30.2 $24.3
Q1 Expenditures $2.8 $1.2

Significant changes to authorities

As per graph 2 below as at June 30, 2021, NSIRA had authorities available for use of $30.2 million in 2021-22 compared to $24.3 million as of June 30, 2020, for a net increase of $5.9 million or 24.3%.

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2021

Graph: Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2021 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at June 30, 2021 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2020-21 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2021 Fiscal year 2021-22 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2022
Vote 1 – Operating $22.8 $28.5
Statutory $1.5 $1.7
Total budgetary authorities $24.3 $30.2

The authorities’ increase of $5.9 million is mostly explained by the ramp-up of approved funding for the mandate of NSIRA and the approval of a funding reprofile into fiscal year 2021-22 for accommodation and infrastructure projects.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The first quarter expenditures totaled $2.7M for an increase of $1.5M when compared to $1.2M spent during the same period in 2020-21. Table 1 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

(in thousands of dollars)

Material Variances to Expenditures by Standard Object YTD Expenditures as of June 30, 2021 YTD Expenditures as of June 30, 2020 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,312 1,111 1,201 108%
Transportation and communications 13 7 6 86%
Information 2 50 (48) (96%)
Professional and special services 196 68 128 188%
Repair and maintenance 8 0 8 100%
Utilities, materials and supplies 3 9 (6) (67%)
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 216 0 216 100%
Other subsidies and payment 12 0 12 100%
Total gross budgetary expenditures 2,762 1,246 1,516 122%

Personnel

The increase of $1.2M relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s departmental mandate as well as higher statutory expenditures in 2021-22.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $6K is mainly explained by the relocation of an employee.

Information

The decrease of $48K is explained by lower expenditures for electronic subscriptions.

Professional and special services

The increase of $128K is mainly due to contracts in management consulting, including procurement and business advisory services.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $8K is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs.

Utilities, Materials and Supplies

The decrease of $6K is mainly explained by lower expenditures for cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment for the pandemic over the previous year.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $216K is mainly explained by the acquisitions of informatics equipment and related cyber security products.

Other Subsidies and payments

The increase of $12K due to multiple payroll system overpayments processed in the first quarter of 2021-22.

Risks and uncertainties

The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the ability of NSIRA to grow its organization in a way that is commensurate with its new mandate. The physical distancing requirements decreased the ability of staff to concurrently work with departments and agencies subject to reviews. In light of that, NSIRA revised its Review Plan and has advanced the introduction of a new approach to the review of complaints.

The ability to hire a sufficient number of qualified personnel within relevant timelines remains a short- and medium-term risk for NSIRA, particularly given the specialized knowledge and skillset required for many positions. This is further compounded by the requirement for candidates to obtain a Top Secret security clearance, which can incur significant delays, especially during the pandemic.

While NSIRA has been able to secure temporary space to address its immediate space requirements, significant delays have been incurred for the fit-up of this space due to the pandemic. NSIRA is working closely with Public Services and Procurement Canada and Shared Services Canada to expedite the office expansion plans.

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to do its work and speak to the relevant stakeholders to understand policies, operations and ongoing issues is closely tied to the reviewed departments’ and agencies’ capacity to respond to the demands of NSIRA. The pandemic impacts including the ability to conduct classified work at the workplace combined with existing resource constraints of the reviewed departments and agencies continue to delay the conduct of reviews.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls, which were implemented in 2016.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach to the conduct of its mandate.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

The pandemic forced changes in the way NSIRA conducts operations. The requirement for physical distancing and the existing challenge with respect to the high security zone accommodation has led NSIRA to authorize staff to work with non-sensitive files from home.

In late March 2021, NSIRA was victim of a cyber attack on its public network. The attack did not affect its classified networks. That attack has led NSIRA to change its Information Technology (IT) operating model and NSIRA has since then been using the Privy Council Office IT infrastructure for the conduct of it’s unclassified and up to protected B activities.

The Honourable Marie Deschamps has also recently been named interim Chair for NSIRA.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Senior Director, Corporate Services, Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2021–22 Fiscal year 2020–21
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended June 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 28,490 2,336 2,336 22,801 875 875
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,705 426 426 1,484 371 371
Total budgetary authorities (note 2) 30,195 2,762 2,762 24,285 1,246 1,246

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2021–22 Fiscal year 2020–21
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2022 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2021 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 Expended during the quarter ended June 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 13,222 2,312 2,312 11,510 1,111 1,111
Transportation and communications 673 13 13 1,162 7 7
Information 375 2 2 364 50 50
Professional and special services 5,904 196 196 3,250 68 68
Rentals 188 0 0 237 0 0
Repair and maintenance 8,737 8 8 7,134 0 0
Utilities, materials and supplies 103 3 3 173 9 9
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 991 216 216 393 0 0
Other subsidies and payments 0 12 12 63 0 0
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
30,195 2,762 2,762 24,285 1,246 1,246

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended December 31, 2020

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2020- 21 Main Estimates.

A summary description of the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency Secretariat (NSIRA) program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. For information on the mandate of NSIRA, please visit its website at http://www.nsira-ossnr.gc.ca.

Mandate

The NSIRA is an independent external review body, which reports to Parliament. NSIRA was established in July of 2019 and is responsible to conduct reviews of the Government of Canada national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and activities.

NSIRA replaces the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC), which reviewed CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) activities as well as those related to the revocation or denial of security clearances. It also hears complaints regarding the Communication Security Establishment (CSE), as well as national security-related complaints regarding the RCMP.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the department’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the department, consistent with the 2020-21 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before moneys 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.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended December 31, 2020.

NSIRA spent approximately 28% of its authorities by the end of the third quarter, compared to 15% in the same quarter of 2019-20 (see graph 1 below).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2020–21 and Q3 2019–20

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q3 2020–21 and Q3 2019–20
  2020-21 2019-20
Total Authorities $24.0 $24.8
Q3 Expenditures $2.7 $2.0
Year-to-Date Expenditures $6.6 $3.8

Significant changes to authorities

As per graph 2 below as at December 31, 2020, NSIRA had authorities available for use of $24.0 million in 2020-21 compared to $24.8 million as of December 31, 2019, for a net decrease of $0.8 million or 3.2%.

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2020

Graph: Variance in authorities as at December 30, 2020 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at December 31, 2020 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2019-20 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2020 Fiscal year 2020-21 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2021
Vote 1 – Operating $23.6 $22.6
Statutory $1.2 $1.4
Total budgetary authorities $24.8 $24.0

The authorities’ decrease of $0.8 million is mostly explained by a transfer of funding to CSE for the fit-up and maintenance of office space.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The third quarter expenditures totaled $2.7M for an increase of $0.7M when compared to $2.0M spent during the same period in 2019-20. Table 1 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Material Variances to Expenditures by Standard Object Fiscal year 2020-21: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Fiscal year 2019-20: expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2019 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 1,732 1,504 228 15%
Transportation and communications 19 99 (80) (81%)
Information 37 3 34 1133%
Professional and special services 389 377 12 3%
Rentals 41 4 37 925%
Repair and maintenance 189 47 142 302%
Utilities, materials and supplies 21 14 7 50%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 257 6 251 4183%
Other subsidies and payment (13) (68) 55 (81%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 2,671 1,985 686 35%

* Details may not sum to totals due to rounding

Personnel

The increase of $0.2M relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s new departmental mandate as well as higher statutory expenditures in 2020-21.

Transportation and communications

The decrease of $80K is mainly explained by the absence of travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Information

The increase of $34K is explained by a contract for communication services.

Rentals

The increase of $37K is mostly due to new fees paid for the maintenance of NSIRA’s Finance and HR systems.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $142K is explained by office accommodation fit-up costs.

Utilities, Materials and Supplies

The increase of $7K is mainly explained by higher expenditures for cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment due to the pandemic.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $251K is mainly explained by furniture acquisitions and office redesign to accommodate more employees and to equip NSIRA personnel to work from home.

Other Subsidies and payments

The increase of $55K is explained by fewer salary overpayment recoveries processed in the third quarter of 2020-21 compared to 2019-20.

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

Year-to-date expenditures recorded to the end of the third quarter totaled $6.7M for an increase of $2.8M when compared to the same year-to-date expenditures in 2019-20. Table 2 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Material Variances to Expenditures by Standard Object YTD Expenditures as of 31 December, 2020 YTD Expenditures as of 31 December 2019 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 5,072 2,814 2,258 80%
Transportation and communications 37 184 (147) (80%)
Information 78 7 71 1014%
Professional and special services 731 555 176 32%
Rentals 104 43 61 142%
Repair and maintenance 247 53 194 366%
Utilities, materials and supplies 28 20 8 40%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 300 35 265 757%
Other subsidies and payment 28 76 (48) (63%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 6,626 3,786 2,840 75%

Details may not sum to totals due to rounding

Personnel

The increase of $2.3M is mainly explained by additional staffing to support NSIRA’s new departmental mandate as well as higher statutory payments.

Transportation and communications

The decrease of $147K is mainly explained by the absence of travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Information

The increase of $71K is explained by higher expenditures for electronic subscriptions and communication consultants.

Professional and special services

The increase of $176K is mainly due to additional management consulting contracts.

Rentals

The increase of $61K is mostly explained by new fees paid for the maintenance of NSIRA’s corporate information technology systems.

Repair and maintenance

The increase of $194K is mainly due to office accommodation fit-up costs.

Utilities, Materials and Supplies

The increase of $8K is mainly explained by higher expenditures of cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment due to the pandemic.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $265K is mainly explained by furniture acquisitions and office redesign to accommodate more employees and to support home offices.

Other Subsidies and payments

The decrease of $48K is due to multiple salary overpayments processed in the first three quarters of 2019-20.

Risks and uncertainties

The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the ability of NSIRA to grow its organization in a way that is commensurate with its new mandate. The physical distancing requirements decreased the ability of staff to concurrently work with departments and agencies subject to reviews. In light of that, NSIRA revised its Review Plan and has advanced the introduction of a new approach to the review of complaints.

The ability to hire a sufficient number of qualified personnel within relevant timelines remains a short- and medium-term risk for NSIRA, particularly given the specialized knowledge and skillset required for many positions. This is further compounded by the requirement for candidates to obtain a Top Secret security clearance, which can incur significant delays, especially during the pandemic.

While NSIRA has been able to secure temporary space to address its immediate space requirements, significant delays have been incurred for the fit-up of this space due to the pandemic. The timing at which staff will be able to operate within this high security zone has yet to be determined. NSIRA is working closely with Public Services and Procurement Canada and Shared Services Canada to expedite the office expansion plans.

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to do its work and speak to the relevant stakeholders to understand policies, operations and ongoing issues is closely tied to the reviewed departments’ and agencies’ capacity to respond to the demands of NSIRA. The pandemic impacts including the ability to conduct classified work at the workplace combined with existing resource constraints of the reviewed departments and agencies could delay NSIRA’s ability to deliver on its mandate in a timely way.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls, which were implemented in 2016.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach to the conduct of its mandate. 

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

The pandemic forced changes in the way NSIRA conducts operations. The requirement for physical distancing and the existing challenge with respect to the high security zone accommodation has led NSIRA to authorize staff to work with non-sensitive files from home.

In September 2020, Murray Rankin stepped down as Chair of NSIRA. The Honourable L. Yves Fortier was named acting Chair until the end of his term. Since, The Honourable Dr. Ian Holloway acted as Chair and now The Honourable MarieLucie Morin has been reappointed as acting Chair.

In addition, Faisal Mirza has been appointed as a new member of NSIRA. 

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Deputy Head

Pierre Souligny
Senior Director, Corporate Services, Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2020–21 Fiscal year 2019–20
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2020 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2019 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 22,565 2,300 5,513 23,618 1,854 3,392
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,484 371 1,113 1,240 131 394
Total budgetary authorities 24,049 2,671 6,626 24,858 1,985 3,786

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2020–21 Fiscal year 2019–20
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2020 Expended during the quarter ended December 30, 2019 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 11,512 1,732 5,072 8,677 1,504 2,814
Transportation and communications 1,162 19 37 961 99 184
Information 364 37 78 402 3 7
Professional and special services 3,250 389 731 3,353 377 555
Rentals 237 41 104 229 4 43
Repair and maintenance 6,681 189 247 9,641 47 53
Utilities, materials and supplies 173 21 28 179 14 20
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 293 257 299 1,356 6 25
Other subsidies and payments 278 (13) 28 70 (68) 76
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
24,049 2,671 6,626 24,858 1,985 3,786

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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Date Modified:

Quarterly Report: For the quarter ended September 30th, 2020

Date of Publishing:

Introduction

This quarterly 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 Directive on Accounting Standards, GC 4400 Departmental Quarterly Financial Report. This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the 2020- 21 Main Estimates.

A summary description of the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency Secretariat (NSIRA) program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates. For information on the mandate of NSIRA, please visit its website at http://www.nsira-ossnr.gc.ca.

This quarterly report has not been subject to an external audit or review. 

Mandate

The National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) is an independent external review body, which reports to Parliament. NSIRA was established in July of 2019 and is responsible to conduct reviews of the Government of Canada national security and intelligence activities to ensure that they are lawful, reasonable and necessary. NSIRA also hears public complaints regarding key national security agencies and activities. NSIRA replaces the Security Intelligence Review Committee (SIRC), which reviewed CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) activities as well as those related to the revocation or denial of security clearances. Going forward, it will also hear complaints regarding the Communication Security Establishment (CSE), as well as national security-related complaints regarding the RCMP.

Basis of presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes the department’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the department, consistent with the 2020-21 Main Estimates. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework (cash basis) designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

The authority of Parliament is required before moneys 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.

Highlights of the fiscal quarter and fiscal year-to-date results

This section highlights the significant items that contributed to the net increase or decrease in authorities available for the year and actual expenditures for the quarter ended September 30, 2020.

NSIRA spent approximately 20% of its authorities by the end of the second quarter, compared to 34% in the same quarter of 2019-20 (see graph 1 below).

Graph 1: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2020–21 and Q2 2019–20

Graph: Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures - Text version follows
Comparison of total authorities and total net budgetary expenditures, Q2 2020–21 and Q2 2019–20
  2020-21 2019-20
Total Authorities $20.5 $5.3
Q2 Expenditures $2.7 $1.0
Year-to-Date Expenditures $4.0 $1.8

Significant changes to authorities

As per graph 2 below as at September 30, 2020, NSIRA had authorities available for use of $20.5 million in 2020-21 compared to $5.3 million as of September 30, 2019, for a net increase of $15.2 million or 287%.

Graph 2: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2020

Graph: Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2020 - Text version follows
Variance in authorities as at September 30, 2020 (in millions)
  Fiscal year 2019-20 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2020 Fiscal year 2020-21 total available for use for the year ended March 31, 2021
Vote 1 – Operating $4.8 $19.2
Statutory $0.5 $1.2
Total budgetary authorities $5.3 $20.5

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and limited sessions in the spring for Parliament to study supply, the Standing Orders of the House of Commons were amended to extend the study period into the Fall. As a result, NSIRA is expected to receive full supply for the 2020-21 Main Estimates in December 2020.

The authorities’ increase of $15.2 million is explained by the approval of funding for the mandate of NSIRA. A portion of the increase, $5.0 M, is to be used to initiate temporary and permanent accommodation projects.

Significant changes to quarter expenditures

The second quarter expenditures totaled $2.7M for an increase of $1.7M when compared to $1M spent during the same period in 2019-20. Table 1 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 1

Material Variances to Expenditures by Standard Object Fiscal year 2020-21: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Fiscal year 2019-20: expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2019 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 2,229 761 1,468 193%
Transportation and communications 12 55 (43) (78%)
Information (9) 0 (9)
Professional and special services 275 91 184 202%
Rentals 64 14 50 357%
Repair and maintenance 4 6 (2) (33%)
Utilities, materials and supplies (3) 3 (6) (200%)
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 43 23 20 87%
Other subsidies and payment 42 47 (5) (11%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 2,656 1,000 1,656 166%

Personnel

The increase of $1.5M relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s new departmental mandate.

Transportation and communications

The increase of $1.5M relates to additional staffing to support NSIRA’s new departmental mandate.

Information

The decrease of $9K is explained by a reallocation of expenditures between standard objects.

Professional and special services

The increase of $184K is mainly due to large contracts in Management consulting.

Rentals

The increase of $50K is mostly explained by the timing of the invoices as well as new software licence costs.

Utilities, Materials and Supplies

The decrease of $6K is explained by a reallocation of expenses between standard objects.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $20K is mainly explained by furniture acquisitions and office remodelling to accommodate the increased number of employees.

Other Subsidies and payments

The decrease of $5K is due to multiple salary overpayments processed in the second quarter of 2019-20 which didn’t occur in 2020-21

Significant changes to year-to-date expenditures

Year-to-date expenditures recorded to the end of the second quarter totaled $4.0M for an increase of $2.2M when compared to $1.8M spent during the same period in 2019-20. Table 2 below presents budgetary expenditures by standard object.

Table 2

Material Variances to Expenditures by Standard Object YTD Expenditures as of September 30, 2020 YTD Expenditures as of September 30, 2019 Variance $ Variance %
Personnel 3,340 1,310 2,030 155%
Transportation and communications 19 85 (66) (78%)
Information 41 4 37 925%
Professional and special services 343 178 165 93%
Rentals 64 39 25 64%
Repair and maintenance 57 7 50 714%
Utilities, materials and supplies 7 7 0 0%
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 43 28 15 54%
Other subsidies and payment 42 144 (102) (71%)
Total gross budgetary expenditures 3,955 1,801 2,154 120%

Personnel

The increase of $2M is mainly related to staffing to support NSIRA’s new departmental mandate as well as timing of salary recoveries by other government departments.

Transportation and communications

The decrease of $66K is mainly explained by lack of travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Information

The increase of $37K is explained by higher expenditures for electronic subscriptions and communication consultants.

Professional and special services

The increase of $165K is mainly due to large contract in Management consulting.

Rentals

The increase of $25K is mostly explained by new software licence costs.

Acquisition of machinery and equipment

The increase of $15K is mainly explained by furniture acquisitions and office remodelling to accommodate the increase in number of employees.

Other Subsidies and payments

The decrease of $102K is due to multiple Salary Overpayments processed in first two quarters of 2019-20.

Risks and uncertainties

The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the ability of NSIRA to grow its organization in a way that is commensurate with its new mandate. The physical distancing requirements decreased the ability of staff to concurrently work with departments and agencies subject to reviews. In light of that, NSIRA revised its Review Plan and has advanced the introduction of a new approach to the review of complaints.

The ability to hire a sufficient number of qualified personnel within relevant timelines remains a short- and medium-term risk for NSIRA, particularly given the specialized knowledge and skillset required for many positions. This is further compounded by the requirement for candidates to obtain a Top Secret security clearance, which can incur significant delays, especially during the pandemic.

While NSIRA has been able to secure temporary space to address its immediate space requirements, the timing at which this staff will be able to operate within this high security zone has still not been determined. NSIRA is working closely with Public Services and Procurement Canada to expedite the fit-up plans.

The ability of NSIRA to access the information it needs to do its work and speak to the relevant internal stakeholders to understand policies, operations and ongoing issues is closely tied to the reviewed departments’ capacity to respond to the demands of NSIRA. The pandemic impacts and existing resource constraints of the reviewed departments could delay NSIRA’s ability to deliver on its mandate in a timely way.

NSIRA is closely monitoring pay transactions to identify and address over and under payments in a timely manner and continues to apply ongoing mitigating controls, which were implemented in 2016.

Mitigation measures for the risks outlined above have been identified and are factored into NSIRA’s approach to the conduct of its mandate.

Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

The pandemic forced changes in the way NSIRA conducts operations. The requirement for physical distancing and the existing challenge with respect to high security zone accommodation has led NSIRA to authorize staff to work with nonsensitive files from home.

Murray Rankin, Chair of NSIRA, has left the Agency. Honourable L. Yves Fortier has been designated acting Chair.

There have been no new Governor-in-Council appointments during the second quarter.

There have been no changes to the NSIRA Program.

Approved by senior officials:

John Davies
Executive Director

Pierre Souligny
Senior Director, Corporate Services, Chief Financial Officer

Appendix

Statement of authorities (Unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2020–21 Fiscal year 2019–20
  Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2020 (note 1) Used during the quarter ended September 30, 2019 Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 1 – Net operating expenditures 19,217 2,285 3,213 4,809 869 1,538
Budgetary statutory authorities
Contributions to employee benefit plans 1,237 371 742 526 131 263
Total budgetary authorities 20,453 2,656 3,955 5,334 1,000 1,801

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not add to totals due to rounding

Departmental budgetary expenditures by standard object (unaudited)

(in thousands of dollars)

  Fiscal year 2020–21 Fiscal year 2019–20
  Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2021 (note 1) Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2020 Year to date used at quarter-end Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2020 Expended during the quarter ended September 30, 2019 Year to date used at quarter-end
Expenditures
Personnel 9,592 2,229 3,340 4,142 761 1,310
Transportation and communications 968 12 19 232 55 85
Information 303 (9) 41 76 4
Professional and special services 2,708 275 343 465 91 178
Rentals 197 64 64 70 14 39
Repair and maintenance 5,945 4 57 4 6 7
Utilities, materials and supplies 144 (3) 7 29 3 7
Acquisition of machinery and equipment 327 43 43 315 23 28
Other subsidies and payments 268 42 42 2 47 144
Total gross budgetary expenditures
(note 2)
20,453 2,656 3,955 5,334 1,000 1,801

Note 1: Includes only authorities available for use and granted by Parliament as at quarter-end.

Note 2: Details may not sum to totals due to rounding.

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