Northern Pipeline Agency
Quarterly Financial Report (unaudited)
For the Quarter Ended December 31, 2012
Statement outlining results, risks and significant changes in operations, personnel and programs
This quarterly financial report should be read in conjunction with the Main Estimates, Supplementary Estimates (A), Supplementary Estimates (B), and the Net Budgetary Authorities published on the Treasury Board Secretariat website, as well as Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2012 (Budget 2012). It has been prepared by management as required by section 65.1 of the Financial Administration Act and in the form and manner prescribed by Treasury Board. This quarterly financial report has not been subject to an external audit or review.
1.1 Authority, Mandate and Program Activities
The Northern Pipeline Agency (hereinafter referred to as “the Agency”) was created by legislation in 1978 to carry out federal responsibilities in relation to the planning and construction in Canada of the Alaska Highway Gas Pipeline (AHGP) project by Foothills Pipe Lines Limited. The pipeline is to carry natural gas from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, to the lower 48 states. Foothills Ltd. is now owned by TransCanada PipeLines Ltd.
Further details on the Agency’s authority, mandate and program activities are available in Part II of the 2012-2013 Main Estimates.
1.2 Basis of Presentation
This quarterly financial 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 authorities used by the Agency are consistent with the Main Estimates and Supplementary Estimates (A) and Supplementary Estimates (B) as well as transfers from Treasury Board, for the 2012-2013 fiscal year. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework.
The authority of Parliament is required before monies can be spent by the Government. Approvals are given in the form of annually approved limits through appropriation acts or through legislation in the form of statutory spending authority for specific purposes.
As part of the Parliamentary business of supply, the Main Estimates must be tabled in Parliament on or before March 1 preceding the new fiscal year.
Budget 2012 was tabled in Parliament on March 29, after the tabling of the Main Estimates on February 28, 2012. As a result, the measures announced in the Budget 2012 could not be reflected in the 2012-2013 Main Estimates.
In fiscal year 2012-2013, frozen allotments were established by Treasury Board authority in departmental votes to prohibit the spending of funds identified as savings measures in Budget 2012. The changes to departmental authorities for future years were implemented through the Annual Reference Level Update, as approved by Treasury Board, and reflected in the subsequent Main Estimates tabled in Parliament.
Although the Agency uses the full accrual method of accounting to prepare and present its annual audited financial statements that are part of the Departmental Performance Report and its Annual Report, the spending authorities voted by Parliament remain on an expenditure basis.
2. Highlights of the Second Fiscal Quarter and Comparative Results
This Quarterly Financial Report reflects the result as at December 31, 2012, including Main Estimates, Supplementary Estimates (A), Supplementary Estimates (B), and the Operating Budget Carry Forward for which full supply was released. The details presented in this report focus on and compare the third quarter results of 2012-2013 with those of 2011-2012.
2.1 Authorities Available for Use and Planned Spending for the Year
As at December 31, 2012, the Agency has authorities available for use of $3,285,470 in 2012-2013 compared to $3,088,250 in 2011-2012, for a net increase of $ 197,220 or 6.4%. The differences are due to the following:
- An increase in contribution funds of $180,000 to conduct consultations, primarily with Aboriginal groups who may be affected by the project;
- An increase in operating funds of $20,000 to support the consultation activities;
- A decrease in employee benefit plans of $2,780.
2.2 Authorities Used and Amounts Expended During the Quarter
Year-to-date spending in 2012-2013 represents $679,064 (20.7%) of total funding available compared to $1,029,560 (33.3%) spent at the same time last year, a net decrease of $350,496.
During the third quarter in 2012-2013, the Agency spent $(40,900) of the total funding available, compared to $585,114 or 19%, the same period in 2011-2012, for a net decrease of $626,014, which are primarily as a result of personnel costs, professional and special services and transfer payments.
- Unlike the salary accrual in the third quarter of 2011-2012, a salary accrual was not done in the third quarter of 2012-2013.
- The expense of professional and special services decreased by $57,745 between the third quarter of 2011-2012 ($79,287) and 2012-2013 ($21,542) due to reduced requirements for temporary help and legal services.
- No contribution funds were issued in the third quarter of 2012-2013.
3. Risks and Uncertainties
The Agency must plan for an efficient and effective review and regulation of the project taking into account changes since the Northern Pipeline Act (the Act) came into force and the pipeline was certificated in the late 1970s. Some of the changes in Yukon include new environmental legislation, devolution of some federal responsibilities, and settlement of most of the First Nations land claims along the pipeline route.
The Agency must also adapt to the pace of project development by the proponent, i.e., to carry out its responsibilities and to make the necessary preparations.
Failure to make timely preparations could jeopardize the Government of Canada’s performance of responsibilities under the 1977 Canada-US Agreement (the Agreement) and the Northern Pipeline Act, and pursuant to TransCanada’s rights related to its existing Certificates of Public Convenience and Necessity, and its existing pipeline easement in the Yukon.
3.1 Risk Mitigation Framework
The Agency identifies and responds to the pace of the project’s development by continuous corporate-level forecasting, tracking and management of issues that could affect or require a response from the Agency. For example, on March 30, 2012, ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, BP and TransCanada announced a work plan to assess liquefied natural gas exports from south-central Alaska as an alternative to a natural gas pipeline through Canada.
During this period, the Agency will continue to work with federal agencies, provincial and territorial governments, the United States and Aboriginal organizations to meet the objectives of the Act and the Agreement. The Agency remains ready, engaged and prepared to lead the review of the AHGP project, if and when the project moves forward.
4. Significant Changes in Relation to Operations, Personnel and Programs
There were no significant changes to operations, personnel and programs.
5. Budget 2012 Implementation
This section provides an overview of the measures announced in Budget 2012 which aim to refocus government and programs; make it easier for Canadians and business to deal with their government; and modernize and reduce the back office.
Budget 2012 provided the Agency with authorities of $47 million over two years (to be cost recovered) to carry out federal regulatory responsibilities related to the AHGP project. However, the Agency will not be drawing on Budget 2012 funding for 2012-2013, in light of the March 30, 2012 announcement noted in the Risk Mitigation Framework section above.
|Serge P. Dupont
|27 February 2013
|Fiscal year 2012-2013||Fiscal year 2011-2012|
|Budgetary Authorities||Total available for use for the year ending* March 31, 2013||Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2011||Year-to-date used at quarter-end||Total available for use for the year ending March 31, 2012||Used during the quarter ended December 31, 2012||Year-to-date used at quarter-end|
|Net Operating expenditures - Vote 30||3,163,150||(71,480)||587,324||2,963,150||585,114||935,735|
|Statutory Authority - Employee Benefit Plans||122,320||30,580||91,740||125,100||-||93,825|
|Total Budgetary Authorities||3,285,470||(40,900)||679,064||3,088,250||585,114||1,029,560|
* Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter-end: Main and Supplementary Estimates (A) and Supplementary Estimates (B).
|Fiscal year 2012-2013||Fiscal year 2011-2012|
|Expenditures:||Planned expenditures for the year ending* March 31, 2013||Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2012||Year-to-date used at quarter-end||Planned expenditures for the year ending March 31, 2012||Expended during the quarter ended December 31, 2011||Year-to-date used at quarter-end|
|Transportation and communication
|Professional and special services
|Repair and maintenance
|Utilities, materials and supplies
|Acquisition of machinery and equipment
|Other subsidies and payments
|Total net budgetary expenditures||3,285,470||(40,900)||679,064||3,088,250||585,114||1,029,560|