Transportation Safety Board of Canada, 2013–14 Report on Plans and Priorities

______________________________
Wendy A. Tadros
Chair


Transportation Safety Board of Canada

______________________________
Peter Penashue
President


Queen's Privy Council for Canada

Chair's message

All Canadians are affected by transportation safety. Aircraft carry us from coast to coast to coast. Pipelines transport oil and gas to key markets. Trains and ferries connect us to loved ones throughout our nation. We expect them to be safe, and that's where the Transportation Safety Board of Canada comes in.

For 23 years, it's been our job to get to the bottom of accidents, and with each safety lesson learned, our experts call upon those best placed to take action. And yet there are challenges: in the aviation, rail and marine sectors the regulatory processes are complex, and poor industry buy-in continues to hinder progress on key issues, leaving long standing risks unaddressed.

To continue moving safety forward, we've changed as an organization—we've had to. In addition to modernizing the rail and pipeline databases and strengthening our strategic human resources planning, we have made notable improvements to the website user experience, implemented a digital media strategy and drew greater attention to each investigation. By renewing our call for action on the issues that pose the greatest risk to Canadians, the introduction of Watchlist 2012 has helped advance the discussion on safety and expand stakeholder engagement as well. And even though we've seen encouraging progress with 72% of our outstanding recommendations now rated Fully Satisfactory, our goals for the future remain ambitious. This means taking a hard look at why we do the things we do, and then finding innovative ways to do them better. In the wake of the new reality of fiscal constraints, this holds true now more than ever.

Over the next year, we will focus on overcoming these obstacles by further streamlining our operations, improving information management, adopting new ways to track safety communications, and implementing a corporate communications framework. We will continue to use new technology to reach Canadians, government and industry, ensuring our safety messages are not only heard, but heeded.

By blending solid experience with a forward thinking approach, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada stands ready to embrace a future filled with even more change. Through our unwavering commitment to advancing transportation safety, we will push again and again for the improvements that need to be made to ensure the safety of all Canadians—on our waterways, along our pipelines and railways, and in our skies.

Section 1: Organizational overview

1.1 Raison d'être

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) is an independent agency created in 1990 by an Act of Parliament (Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act). It operates at arm's length from other government departments and agencies to ensure that there are no real or perceived conflicts of interest.

The TSB's sole objective is to advance transportation safety. This mandate is fulfilled by conducting independent investigations into selected transportation occurrences. The purpose of these investigations is to identify the causes and contributing factors and the safety deficiencies evidenced by an occurrence. The TSB then makes recommendations to improve safety and reduce or eliminate risks to people, property and the environment.

The jurisdiction of the TSB includes all aviation, marine, rail and pipeline transportation occurrencesFootnote 1 in or over Canada that fall under federal jurisdiction. The TSB may also represent Canadian interests in foreign investigations of transportation accidents involving Canadian registered, licensed or manufactured aircraft, ships or railway rolling stock. In addition, the TSB carries out some of Canada's obligations related to transportation safety at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

1.2 Responsibilities

The TSB exists as an independent investigation body with the sole goal of advancing transportation safety. Since its inception in 1990, the TSB has conducted thousands of investigations across the modes of transportation for which it is responsible.

The TSB is one of many Canadian and foreign organizations involved in improving transportation safety nationally and internationally. Because it has no formal authority to regulate, direct or enforce specific actions, the TSB can succeed in fulfilling its strategic outcome only through the actions of others. Operating at arm's length from other federal departments involved in the transportation field, the Board must present its findings and recommendations in a manner that compels others to act. This implies ongoing dialogue, information sharing and strategic coordination with organizations such as Transport Canada, the National Energy Board and the Canadian Coast Guard. The TSB must engage industry and foreign regulatory organizations in a similar fashion. Through various means, the TSB must present compelling arguments that will convince these "change agents" to take action in response to identified safety deficiencies.

As one of the world leaders in its field, the TSB regularly shares its investigation techniques, methodologies and tools with foreign safety organizations by inviting them to participate in in-house training programs in the areas of investigation methodology and human and organizational factors. Under the terms of international agreements, the TSB also provides investigation assistance to foreign safety boards, such as decoding and analyzing flight recorder data or overseeing engine tear-downs. The TSB also shares data and reports with sister organizations, in addition to participating in international working groups and studies to advance transportation safety.

For more details on the TSB investigation process or the links between the TSB and other federal organizations visit the TSB website.Footnote i

1.3 Strategic outcome and program alignment architecture

The chart below illustrates the program alignment framework that contributes to progress toward the TSB strategic outcome.

1.4 Organizational priorities

The TSB Strategic PlanFootnote ii outlines the four strategic objectives and associated priorities that have been identified by senior management for 2011–12 to 2015–16 in order to achieve its strategic outcome. This plan provides the framework that guides the review of TSB's environment and the identification of the investments and activities for the current exercise.

Strategic objective 1: Responding

Priority Strengthened organizational readines
Type OngoingFootnote 2a
Programs
  • Air Investigations
  • Marine Investigations
  • Rail Investigations
  • Pipeline Investigations
Description The TSB will continue to focus on strategic human resources management by investing in the training and development of its employees. In particular, the update of the accident investigation training program, the manuals of investigations and the Occurrence Classification Policy will continue in 2013–14.

Strategic objective 2: Managing

Priority Improved information and data management
Type OngoingFootnote 2b
Programs
  • Air Investigations
  • Marine Investigations
  • Rail Investigations
  • Pipeline Investigations
Description

The TSB will continue to enhance its information management processes and tools by:

  • completing the formal identification of its information resources of business value and consequently implementing changes to its information management policies and practices;
  • completing the modernization of the database that manages information on Marine occurrences and initiating the modernization of the Air occurrences database;
  • implementing a multi-modal safety communications tracking tool to monitor safety issues;
  • exploring means to more broadly share safety information with stakeholders.

Strategic objective 3: Communicating

Priority Increased awareness of the TSB
Type Previously committedFootnote 3a
Programs
  • Air Investigations
  • Marine Investigations
  • Rail Investigations
  • Pipeline Investigations
Description The TSB will implement its corporate communications framework. It will also leverage new technologies to expand its communications and outreach activities to improve awareness of its products and services.

Strategic objective 4: Advocating

Priority Increased effectiveness of TSB products and services
Type Previously committedFootnote 3b
Programs
  • Air Investigations
  • Marine Investigations
  • Rail Investigations
  • Pipeline Investigations
Description The TSB will endeavor to increase the uptake of recommendations and other safety communications by stakeholders by increasing awareness of the issues through continuously improved communication products and broader outreach activities.

1.5 Risk analysis

The TSB operates within the context of a very large and complex Canadian and international transportation system. The following strategic risks have been identified for 2013–14. Each of these risks represents a potential threat to the achievement of the department's strategic objectives.

Safeguarding, retention and retrieval of information

The TSB's work is fundamentally reliant on the collection, retention, management and analysis of occurrence information. The TSB must therefore ensure that information is current, appropriately stored and readily accessible to employees. The TSB has an established Investigation Management System as well as a database application for each transportation mode in which investigation and occurrence information is collected and managed. The TSB must continue to enhance the processes, tools and technology in support of the management of its information resources to mitigate the risk of losing critical information and corporate knowledge.

Protection of investigation information

In recent years, there has been a greater push on the TSB to release privileged information such as on-board voice recordings and transcripts, as well as witness statements. The Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation Safety Board Act requires this information to be protected; however, this protection may be challenged for release under the Access to Information Act or through court proceedings. The perception that privileged information will be made available to the public or in court proceedings may affect witnesses' willingness to share information with the TSB and thus may compromise the effectiveness of its operations. In order to mitigate this risk, the TSB's position of restricting access to privileged information is being consistently maintained and defended when challenged.

Recruitment, development and maintenance of a knowledge workforce

The success of the TSB and its credibility depends largely on the expertise, professionalism and competence of its employees. Certain key positions at the TSB are "one deep" which means that there is only one person responsible for a specific task, with limited back-up. In addition, some of these key positions also require strong managerial and technical skills. Given the on-going attrition due to employee retirements, the loss of expertise and knowledge may pose a significant risk to the TSB's success. The TSB is increasing its efforts to maintain its knowledge base and technical expertise through effective recruitment, training and development in order to mitigate this risk.

Financial resources

Progressive reductions of the TSB's budget will be fully implemented by the end of 2014–15. The TSB anticipates being able to reduce its planned spending without significantly affecting the number or timeliness of investigations. However, the reductions in funding have significantly reduced the flexibility in the TSB's budget to respond to unforeseen changes in its operating environment.

1.6 Planning summary

Planned spending and planned FTEs

The two tables below show information on TSB's planned spending and planned full-time equivalents (FTEs) for the next three fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
29,568 30,168 29,598 29,598
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
227 225 225
Planning summary table—Strategic outcome programs: Actual and planned spending, by program, 2010–11 to 2015–16 ($ thousands), to achieve TSB's strategic outcome, "Risks to the safety of the transportation system are reduced", which aligns with the Government of Canada outcome, "A safe and secure Canada".Footnote iii
Program Actual spending
2010–11
Actual spending
2011–12
Forecast spending
2012–13
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
Air Investigations 14,311 14,442 14,051 13,334 13,075 13,075
Rail Investigations 4,598 5,106 5,049 4,894 4,809 4,809
Marine Investigations 4,474 4,620 4,910 4,915 4,823 4,823
Pipeline Investigations 489 525 473 446 438 438
Sub-total 23,872 24,693 24,483 23,589 23,145 23,145
Planning summary table—Internal Services: Actual and planned spending, 2010–11 to 2015–16 ($ thousands)
Program Actual spending
2010–11
Actual spending
2011–12
Forecast spending
2012–13
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
Internal Services 6,826 7,101 7,460 6,579 6,453 6,453
Sub-total 6,826 7,101 7,460 6,579 6,453 6,453
Planning summary table—Total: Total actual and planned spending, 2010–11 to 2015–16 ($ thousands)
Strategic outcome programs and internal services Actual
spending 2010–11
Actual
spending 2011–12
Forecast
spending 2012–13
Planned
spending 2013–14
Planned
spending 2014–15
Planned
spending 2015–16
Total 30,698 31,794 31,943 30,168 29,598 29,598

1.7 Expenditures profile

The figure below illustrates TSB's spending trend from 2009–10 to 2015–16.

TSB's spending trend from 2009–10 to 2015–16

(1) Costs of services received without charge are not included in the total spending.

TSB spending trend from 2009–10 to 2015–16, accessible table.
TSB spending trend from 2009–10 to 2015–16 ($ millions)
2009–10 2010–11 2011–12 2012–13 2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
Total 31.5 30.7 31.8 31.9 30.2 29.6 29.6

Costs of services received without charge are not included in the total spending.

The spending amounts presented in the chart for fiscal years 2009–10 to 2011–12 are actual results as presented in the Public Accounts of Canada. Spending in fiscal year 2010–11 was lower than prior years primarily as a result of reduced expenditures on salaries and related expenses due to employee turnover and a planned decrease in discretionary spending in response to restraint measures.

Forecast spending for fiscal year 2012–13 is $31.9 million. This estimate is based on total available authorities less an estimated lapse of $0.2 million. Available authorities include reductions of $1.3 million by 2014–15. These permanent reductions are reflected in TSB's planned spending amounts for 2012–13 and onward.

Fiscal year 2013–14 projected spending includes funding to be received through Main Estimates plus an estimated carry-forward of lapsed funds from 2012–13 of $0.2 million, as well as an estimate for terminable allowances of $0.4 million. It does not include increases in funding for collective bargaining agreements to be received in Supplementary Estimates or other transfers from Treasury Board that cannot be estimated at this time.

Projected spending for fiscal years 2014–15 and 2015–16 consists of funding anticipated to be received through Main Estimates plus an estimated amount for compensation adjustments for terminable allowances. These amounts are slightly underestimated as they do not include funding that should eventually be received through Supplementary Estimates, transfers from Treasury Board Votes 10 and 30 or respendable revenues.

1.8 Estimates by vote

The TSB has one operating budget vote and one statutory vote for contributions to employee benefit plans. For information on TSB appropriations, please see the 2013–14 Main Estimates publication.Footnote iv

Section 2: Analysis of programs by strategic outcome

2.1 Strategic outcome

The risks to the safety of the transportation system are reduced.

Programs

As shown in the 2013–14 Main Estimates, the TSB has the following four key programs:

  • Air Investigations
  • Rail Investigations
  • Marine Investigations
  • Pipeline Investigations

The TSB has completed the revision of its performance management framework, and revised performance indicators are introduced in this year's Report on Plans and Priorities. However, the key performance indicator for each program remains the response of change agents to TSB recommendations. As of September 2012, 72% of the responses to the TSB's recommendations were assessed as fully satisfactory, while the organization is striving to achieve an overall rate of 80% by 2016–17. It should be noted that the TSB has no control or authority over the change agents and the actions they take in response to its recommendations. However, this performance indicator is still a good measure of the TSB's ability to influence other organizations and compel them to implement safety actions.

During 2013–14, the TSB expects to complete the review of its Regulations and their publication in the Canada Gazette II. Outreach activities will then be undertaken across the four key program areas to inform stakeholders of the changes and ensure a smooth implementation. A review and update of TSB Board policies was also undertaken and is expected to be completed in 2013–14. Furthermore, the TSB will explore means to improve its sharing of safety information with its stakeholders to help promote the proactive identification and mitigation of safety risks.

2.2 Air Investigations program

Description

Under the Air Investigations program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected air transportation occurrences in or over Canada and in certain circumstances internationally, to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation of recommendations to improve safety, the communication of safety information, the conduct of outreach activities to advocate for changes, and the follow-up on responses to recommendations and other safety communications. The Air Investigations program also includes the fulfillment of Canada's obligations related to transportation safety as required by the International Civil Aviation Organization. This program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act, the Transportation Safety Board Regulations, and Annex 13 of the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

Resources

The two tables below show the total planned spending and FTEs for the Air Investigations program for 2013–14 and the next two fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
13,128 13,334 13,075 13,075
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
103 102 102

Note: The methodology for allocating FTEs performing common investigation–related activities to each program was modified for 2013–14.

Expected results and performance indicators

The following table shows the expected results along with the associated performance indicators and targets for the Air Investigations program.

Program expected results Performance indicators Targets
Safety deficiencies in the aviation industry are addressed. Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 65% by March 31, 2014
Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 60% by March 31, 2014
Air investigations are efficient. Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days by March 31, 2014
Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% by March 31, 2014

Planning highlights

The TSB faces significant challenges in achieving the published performance targets for the Air Investigations program. Over the past two years there has been some progress in removing key aviation safety issues from the TSB Watchlist, but four key safety issues remain outstanding. Progress on the satisfactory implementation of TSB recommendations is very slow due to the complexity of the regulatory process, the need to harmonize standards with other countries, and the lack of buy-in from some industry stakeholders. Sustained and targeted outreach efforts will continue to be made to try and convince regulators and industry to take safety actions to mitigate these safety risks.

The TSB also faces challenges in achieving its performance targets for the timely completion of aviation investigation reports. A number of measures have recently been implemented to improve the tracking and management of the investigation workload. A review of the investigation process will be undertaken to identify opportunities to improve the efficiency and timeliness of the process. Additional training will also be provided to staff to strengthen their skills in some key areas.

Approximately 20% of the Air Investigations workforce is eligible for retirement in 2013–14. Effective succession planning, proactive staffing, and investments in training and knowledge transfer will therefore be a priority for 2013–14. Efforts will also be made to initiate the modernization of the Air investigations database.

2.3 Rail Investigations program

Description

Under the Rail Investigations program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected rail transportation occurrences to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation of recommendations to improve safety, the communication of safety information, undertaking outreach activities to advocate for change, and the follow-up on responses to recommendations and other safety communications. The Rail Investigations program also includes the provision of assistance, upon request, to the provinces for the investigation of short-line railway occurrences under provincial jurisdiction. This program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and the Transportation Safety Board Regulations.

Resources

The two tables below show the planned total spending and planned FTEs for the Rail Investigations program for 2013–14 and the next two fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
4,731 4,894 4,809 4,809
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
37 36 36

Expected results and performance indicators

The following table shows the expected results along with the associated performance indicators and targets for the Rail Investigations program.

Program expected results Performance indicators Targets
Safety deficiencies in the rail industry are addressed. Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 87% by March 31, 2014
Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 60% by March 31, 2014
Rail investigations are efficient. Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days by March 31, 2014
Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% by March 31, 2014

Planning highlights

Very good progress has already been made towards achieving the performance targets set for the Rail Investigations program. Some of the targets have already been met (i.e. recommendations assessed as fully satisfactory). Since the release of the initial Watchlist in March 2010, three key safety issues for Rail have been removed and two new safety issues have been added, leaving three outstanding issues to be addressed. Despite the very positive responses and high level of safety actions taken, significant issues remain unresolved. Continued efforts are therefore required to encourage the regulator to focus on the remaining recommendations and Watchlist issues, and to take appropriate safety actions. Industry buy-in is also key to the successful mitigation of the residual safety risks.

Good progress has been made towards ensuring that the timeliness targets for safety communications are consistently achieved. The Rail Branch will continue to manage its investigation process rigorously. Through effective coordination within the investigation team, early development of the sequence of events and early identification of safety deficiencies, concise, focused reports will be completed in a timely manner.

Staffing is currently on-going to replace retiring personnel. During 2013–14, a priority will therefore be placed on the training of new staff and knowledge transfer. As approximately 20% of the Rail personnel will be eligible to retire within 24 months, effective succession planning and proactive staffing will remain a priority for the next two years.

2.4 Marine Investigations program

Description

Under the Marine Investigations program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected marine transportation occurrences in Canada, and in certain circumstances internationally to identify causes and contributing factors. This program includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation of recommendations to improve safety, the communication of safety information, outreach activities to advocate for change, and the follow-up on responses to recommendations and other safety communications. The Marine Investigations program also includes the fulfillment of some of Canada's obligations related to transportation safety as required by the International Maritime Organization. This program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act, the Transportation Safety Board Regulations, and the Casualty Investigation Code of the International Maritime Organization.

Resources

The two tables below show the total planned spending and FTEs for the Marine Investigations program for 2013–14 and the next two fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
4,731 4,915 4,823 4,823
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
36 36 36

Note: The methodology for allocating FTEs performing common investigation related activities to each program was modified for 2013–14.

Expected results and performance indicators

The following table shows the expected results along with the associated performance indicators and targets for the Marine Investigations program.

Program expected results Performance indicators Targets
Safety deficiencies in the marine industry are addressed. Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 80% by March 31, 2014
Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 60% by March 31, 2014
Marine investigations are efficient. Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days by March 31, 2014
Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 75% by March 31, 2014

Planning highlights

Good progress has been made towards achieving the performance targets of the Marine Investigations program. Two Marine issues have been removed from the TSB Watchlist and two issues remain outstanding. A few more recommendations have been assessed as fully satisfactory and it is anticipated that Transport Canada's new Fishing Vessel Safety Regulations will further increase this in the next few years.

Progress has also been made in reducing the number of days required to complete an investigation. It is anticipated that the targeted time required to complete a report will be achieved in 2013–14, mainly due to the implementation of more rigorous project management concepts and practices, as well as investments in investigator training.

On-going attrition due to employee retirements is expected over the next few years. Effective succession planning, proactive staffing plans and knowledge transfer will be required to ensure that an adequate workforce is maintained. Continued efforts will also be made to complete the modernization of the Marine investigations database.

2.5 Pipeline Investigations program

Description

Under the Pipeline Investigations program, the TSB conducts independent investigations into selected pipeline occurrences under federal jurisdiction within Canada to identify causes and contributing factors. This program also includes the publication of investigation reports, the formulation of recommendations to improve safety, the communication of safety information, undertaking outreach activities to advocate for change, and the follow-up on responses to recommendations and other safety communications. This program is governed by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and the Transportation Safety Board Regulations.

Resources

The two tables below show the total planned spending and FTEs in the Pipeline Investigations program for 2013–14 and the next two fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
443 446 438 438
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
3 3 3

Expected results and performance indicators

The following table shows the expected results along with the associated performance indicators and targets for the Pipeline Investigations program.

Program expected results Performance indicators Targets
Safety deficiencies in the pipeline industry are addressed. Percentage of responses to recommendations assessed as Fully Satisfactory (since TSB's creation) 95% by March 31, 2014
Percentage of safety advisories on which safety actions have been taken 75% by March 31, 2014
Pipeline investigations are efficient. Average time for completing investigation reports 450 days by March 31, 2014
Percentage of investigations completed within the published target time 100% by March 31, 2014

Planning highlights

The performance targets for the Pipeline Investigations program have been achieved. At this time, there are no remaining active Pipeline recommendations: all have been assessed as Fully Satisfactory. The TSB has also been successful in ensuring the timeliness targets of its safety communications and anticipates being able to continue meeting the targets through careful and effective management of resources.

Efforts are being made to analyze the increasing trend in the number of reported small incidents within the pipeline industry. The results of this analysis will be used as a basis to support outreach activities aimed at increasing the level of awareness and ultimately reducing the number of small incidents.

2.6 Internal services

Description

The Internal Services program includes the functions and resources required to support the needs of the operational programs associated with the four transportation modes, as well as to meet the department's corporate obligations. These activities are coordinated by the Corporate Services Branch and include the services relating to human resources management; financial management; information management; information technology; corporate planning and reporting; procurement; materiel management, and other administrative services.

Resources

The two tables below show the total planned spending and FTEs for the Internal Services program for 2013–14 and the next two fiscal years.

Financial resources ($ thousands)
Total budgetary expenditures
(main estimates)
2013–14
Planned spending
2013–14
Planned spending
2014–15
Planned spending
2015–16
6,535 6,579 6,453 6,453
Human resources (FTEs)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
48 48 48

Expected results and performance indicators

The following table shows the expected results along with the associated performance indicators and targets for the Internal Services program.

Program expected results Performance indicators Targets
Effective support to program delivery Provision of effective and efficient support services Not applicable
Strengthened management practices Continuous improvement in ratings for the areas of management in the Treasury Board Secretariat's Management Accountability Framework (MAF) assessment Rating of acceptable or above in all areas
Continuous improvement in ratings from the Public Service Commission's assessment of the TSB's Departmental Staffing Accountability Report and the PSC's audit of TSB staffing Rating of acceptable or above in all areas
Effective financial management to ensure corporate commitments towards spending restraints are met without significant impact on operations Corporate commitments are met

Planning highlights

One of the Internal Services' main priorities for 2013–14 will be the implementation of the reductions in TSB funding. Effective financial management will be required in order to ensure that savings are achieved without impacting on the delivery of the TSB's mandate. The Internal Services areas will absorb a significant portion of the funding reductions, so efficiencies in the delivery of internal services will be continue to be identified and implemented during 2013–14.

The Corporate Services Branch will continue to monitor offerings of shared administrative services and systems, and the centralization of certain informatics services in 2013–14. While there are many benefits to centralized services, the TSB is concerned that the cost of these services may exceed the department's current costs and create further pressures on the operating budget.

The second priority for Internal Services in 2013–14 is to improve the tools and guidance with respect to information management. During 2012–13, the TSB undertook two important initiatives that serve as important information management foundation work: the identification of information resources of business value and the implementation of an electronic records and data management system on a pilot basis. The TSB will build on the lessons learned from these initiatives in prioritizing the next steps to improve its information management tools and guidance. Additionally, the TSB will complete its work on the modernization of the Marine investigations database that captures occurrence information and initiate work on the modernization of the Air investigations database.

Section 3: Supplementary information

3.1 Financial highlights

The future-oriented financial highlights presented in this report are intended to serve as a general overview of the TSB's projected financial position and results of operations for fiscal year-ends 2012–13 and 2013–14. These financial statements are prepared on an accrual accounting basis and are based on assumptions and estimates that ultimately may be significantly different from final results.

Future-oriented condensed statement of operations and departmental financial position for the year ended March 31 ($ thousands)
$ Change Forecast
2013–14
Estimated Results
2012–13
Total expenses -1,903 33,453 35,356
Total revenues -17 44 61
Net cost of operations before government funding -1,886 33,409 35,295
Departmental net financial position 913 1,608 695

As shown in the table above, the TSB is projecting a net cost of operations of $33.4 million. This projection is based upon funding requested in the 2013–14 Main Estimates, plus estimated unused funding carried forward from 2012–13 and compensation adjustments for terminable allowances. The forecast decrease in expenses in 2013–14 of $1.9 million is due primarily to lower funding, and a lower estimate of carry-forward funding between years.

Future-oriented condensed statement of financial position for the year ended March 31 ($ thousands)
$ Change Forecast
2013–14
Estimated results
2012–13
Total net liabilities -273 6,154 6,427
Total financial assets 251 1,624 1,373
Departmental net debt -524 4,530 5,054
Total non-financial assets 389 6,138 5,749
Departmental net financial position 913 1,608 695

No significant change is anticipated in the composition of assets, liabilities and equity between fiscal years 2012–13 and 2013–14. The decline in liabilities between years is due to an anticipated decrease in the employee severance benefits liability as employees select optional payouts under signed collective agreements. The increase in forecast non-financial assets is as a result of an expected increase in tangible capital assets resulting from the modernization of the Marine and Air investigation databases.

3.2 Future-oriented financial statements

3.3 Supplementary information table

Section 4: Other item of interest

4.1 Contacting the TSB

Additional information about the Transportation Safety Board of Canada and its activities is available by contacting us at:

Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Place du Centre
200 Promenade du Portage, 4th floor
Gatineau, QC  K1A 1K8

E-mail: communications@bst-tsb.gc.ca
Toll-free telephone: 1–800–387–3557

Find us on the Web www.tsb.gc.ca
Follow us on Twitter @TSBCanada
Watch us on YouTube /TSBCanada
See our photos on Flickr /tsbcanada

Endnotes

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