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THE STANDING COMMITTEE ON INTERNAL ECONOMY, BUDGETS AND ADMINISTRATION

MINUTES OF PROCEEDINGS


OTTAWA, Thursday, February 27, 2020
(4)

[English]

The Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration met this day at 8:30 a.m., in room C128, Senate of Canada Building, the chair, the Honourable Sabi Marwah, presiding.

Members of the committee present: The Honourable Senators Batters, Boehm, Dalphond, Dean, Forest, LaBoucane-Benson, Marshall, Marwah, Moncion, Plett, Poirier, Saint-Germain, Seidman and Smith (14).

Other senators present: The Honourable Senators Omidvar, Verner, P.C. and White (3).

Also in attendance: Pascale Legault, Chief Corporate Services Officer and Clerk of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration; Richard Denis, Interim Clerk of the Senate and Clerk of the Parliaments and Chief Legislative Services Officer; Philippe Hallée, Law Clerk and Parliamentary Counsel; senior Senate officials and other support staff.

Also present: The official reporters of the Senate.

WITNESS:

Senate of Canada:

Pierre Lanctôt, Chief Financial Officer, Finance and Procurement Directorate;

Nathalie Charpentier, Comptroller and Deputy Chief Financial Officer, Finance and Procurement Directorate.

KPMG:

Andrew Newman, Partner, Audit Leader;

Charly Thivierge-Lortie, Senior Manager, Audit.

Pursuant to rule 12-7 (1) of the Rules of the Senate, the committee continued its consideration of financial and administrative matters concerning the Senate’s internal administration.

CIBA/2020-02-27/033(P) — Adoption of Minutes of Proceedings from February 6, 2020

The committee considered the Minutes of Proceedings of Thursday, February 6, 2020, public portion.

The Honourable Senator Saint-Germain moved:

That the Minutes of Proceedings of Thursday, February 6, 2020 be adopted.

The question being put on the motion, it was adopted.

CIBA/2020-02-27/034(P) — Report from the Subcommittee on Audit — Financial Statements of the Senate of Canada for the Year Ended March 31, 2019

The Chair of the Audit Subcommittee, the Honourable Senator Moncion, presented the eighteenth report of the subcommittee as follows:

Thursday, February 27, 2020

The Audit Subcommittee of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration has the honour to present its

EIGHTEENTH REPORT

(Intersessional Authority)

Your subcommittee has approved the Audited Financial Statements of the Senate of Canada for the year ended March 31, 2019. The audit was conducted in accordance with Canadian generally accepted auditing standards by the professional services firm of KPMG.

The audit resulted in an unqualified auditor’s report indicating that the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Senate of Canada as at March 31, 2019 and the results of its operations and cash flows in accordance with Canadian public sector accounting standards.

Your subcommittee recommends that these financial statements be tabled in the Senate.

Respectfully submitted,

LUCIE MONCION

Chair

The Honourable Senator Moncion, Pierre Lanctôt and Andrew Newman each made a statement.

Pierre Lanctôt and Andrew Newman answered questions.

The Honourable Senator Moncion moved:

That the report be adopted and that the financial statements be tabled in the Senate.

The question being put on the motion, it was adopted.

It was agreed that all staff leave the room with the exception of Gérald Lafrenière, Andrew Newman and Charly Thivierge-Lortie.

At 8:40 a.m., the committee suspended.

At 8:43 a.m., the committee resumed in camera, pursuant to rule 12-16(1).

At 9:09 a.m., the committee suspended.

At 9:11 a.m., the committee resumed in public.

CIBA/2020-02-27/035(P) — Report from the Subcommittee on Audit — Quarterly Financial Report for the Quarter Ended June 30, 2019 and for the Quarter Ended September 30, 2019

The Chair of the Audit Subcommittee, the Honourable Senator Moncion, tabled the nineteenth report of the subcommittee as follows:

Thursday, February 27, 2020

The Audit Subcommittee of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration has the honour to table its

NINETEENTH REPORT

(Intersessional Authority)

Your subcommittee received the document on the financial highlights and results for the first and second quarters for the fiscal year 2019-20, including the summary of budgetary authorities, the analysis of current expenditures and forecasted expenditures. Your subcommittee informs you that the first-quarter and second-quarter financial results are compliant. We have reviewed and discussed the risks and uncertainties associated with the institution’s financial performance.

Your subcommittee has approved and now tables the Quarterly Financial Reports of the Senate of Canada for the quarter ended June 30, 2019 and for the quarter ended September 30, 2019.

Respectfully submitted,

LUCIE MONCION

Chair

The Honourable Senator Moncion made a statement and, with Pierre Lanctôt, answered questions.

CIBA/2020-02-27/036(P) — Allocation of Caucus/Group and House Officer Budgets for 2020-2021

The Chair made a statement regarding a letter from leadership on the allocation of caucus/group and House Officer budgets for 2020-2021 and, together with Pascale Legault and Pierre Lanctôt, answered questions.

After debate, the Honourable Senator Plett moved:

That, notwithstanding the provisions of the Finance Rule in the Schedule of the Senate Administrative Rules, the additional financial allowance for the fiscal year commencing on April 1, 2020, for the following be as follows:

a) Leader, Deputy Leader and Whip of the Government in the Senate: total amount of $1,510,000;

b) Leader, Deputy Leader and Whip of the Opposition in the Senate and research fund for the Opposition: total amount of $1,279,792;

c) Research fund for the Independent Senators Group: total amount of $1,435,000; and

d) Research fund for the Canadian Senators Group: total amount of $ 460,000.

For greater certainty, the allocated amounts are in effect until the end of the 43rd Parliament and the amounts provided for group and caucus are conditional on the caucus of the relevant party or parliamentary group meeting the minimum size requirement to be a recognized party or a recognized parliamentary group under the Rules of the Senate; and

That the committee undertake a review of the formulae for determining all House Officer Budgets, with a view to establishing a fair and consistent approach to budget determination.

The question being put on the motion, it was adopted.

At 9:23 a.m., the committee suspended.

At 9: 25 a.m., the committee resumed in camera, pursuant to rule 12-16(1).

At 10:36 a.m., the committee adjourned to the call of the chair.

ATTEST:

Pascale Legault

Chief Corporate Services Officer and Clerk of the Standing Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration

Gérald Lafrenière

Recording Secretary