Veterans Review and Appeal Board Quarterly Financial Report

For the quarter ended June 30, 2015

Table of Contents


I. Statement outlining results, risks and significant changes in operations, personnel and program for the quarter ended June 30, 2015

1. Introduction

This quarterly report has been prepared by management as required by section 65.1 of the Financial Administration Act (Opens a New Window) and in the form and manner prescribed by the Treasury Board. This quarterly report should be read in conjunction with the Main Estimates.

The Veterans Review and Appeal Board (VRAB) is an independent, quasi-judicial tribunal that fulfills an important role within Canada’s disability benefits system for Veterans, Canadian Armed Forces members, Royal Canadian Mounted Police members and their families. Throughout the year, in locations across the country, members hear and make decisions on applications for review and appeal of disability decisions rendered by Veterans Affairs Canada. As Canadians, they carry out this work with a strong sense of the responsibility inherent in the Board’s mandate to those who have served – and continue to serve – their country. As adjudicators, they are often faced with difficult human situations and complex issues in making decisions.

The role of the Board is to determine whether the laws governing the disability benefits programs for Veterans and other applicants have been properly applied by Veterans Affairs Canada in individual cases. To accomplish this, they conduct hearings where they listen to applicants’ testimony and/or arguments from representatives and consider new evidence; interpret and apply the legislation based on the evidence; and render written decisions with reasons for their rulings. In making these decisions, Board members are required by law to resolve any doubt in favour of applicants. While the Board is not able to rule favorably in all cases, it makes every effort to issue a fair and well-reasoned decision for each applicant. The Board’s objective is to ensure that Canada’s traditional Veterans, Canadian Armed Forces members and Veterans, Royal Canadian Mounted Police members, qualified civilians and their families receive the disability pensions, disability awards and other benefits to which they are entitled under the law.

A summary description of the Veterans Review and Appeal Board program activities can be found in Part II of the Main Estimates.

Basis of Presentation

This quarterly report has been prepared by management using an expenditure basis of accounting. The accompanying Statement of Authorities includes VRAB’s spending authorities granted by Parliament and those used by the Board, consistent with the Main Estimates for the 2015-16 fiscal year. This quarterly report has been prepared using a special purpose financial reporting framework designed to meet financial information needs with respect to the use of spending authorities.

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 departmental performance reporting process, VRAB prepares its annual departmental financial statements on a full accrual basis in accordance with Treasury Board accounting policies, which are based on Canadian generally accepted accounting principles for the public sector. However, the spending authorities voted by Parliament remain on an expenditure basis.

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

2. Highlights of Fiscal Quarter and Fiscal Year-to-Date (YTD) Results

Statement of Authorities

As at June 30, 2015, the Board’s total authorities available for use remain stable and are relatively unchanged from the end of the same quarter of 2014-15. The small increase is related to statutory budget items (Employee Benefit Plan). Actual YTD expenditures at the end of the first quarter showed an increase of 3.87%, from $2.73 million in 2014-15 to $2.84 million in 2015-16.

Figure 1 - First Quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities

First Quarter Expenditures Compared to Annual Authorities

(D)

Statement of Departmental Budgetary Expenditures by Standard Object

In general, VRAB’s expenditures are distributed equally throughout the year. This trend is consistent in this fiscal year, given that expenditures at the end of the first quarter are equivalent to 26% of the authorities available for use. Most standard object category expenditures are consistent with prior year spending trends. The exception to this is the increase of $417 thousands in the Personnel category, attributed to the July 1 pay being posted at the end of June due to the statutory holiday. The other notable variance from this first quarter is Other Subsidies and Payments which was $288K in 2014-15 and Nil in 2015-16. This is attributed to the one-time transition payment for implementing salary payments in arrears by the Government of Canada in 2014-15.

3. Risks and Uncertainties

The Veterans Review and Appeal Board is funded through annual appropriations. As a result, its operations are impacted by any changes in funding approved through Parliament.

Context: The VRAB is the independent appeal tribunal for the disability pension and disability award programs administered by Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC). The Board was created by Parliament in 1995 to provide Veterans and other applicants with an independent avenue of appeal for disability decisions made by VAC, the Department. Applicants who are dissatisfied with their departmental decision have two levels of redress before VRAB: review and appeal. The Board also hears final appeals of War Veterans Allowance applications. As a service-oriented agency, the majority of VRAB’s operating expenditures are salary based and demand-driven. Managing the demand for hearings is driven by a variety of factors over which VRAB has limited control.

The Board has an Integrated Business and Human Resources Plan and holds quarterly meetings to take into account operational priorities, human and financial resources, and performance measures. VRAB recruits new employees, as required, to replace departing staff to ensure adequate operational support to the redress process. Authorities and expenditures are monitored regularly with senior management.

4. Significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs

There have been no significant changes in relation to operations, personnel and programs over the last year.

Approved by:

________________________________
Thomas W. Jarmyn, A/Chair

Veterans Review and Appeal Board
Charlottetown, PE

________________________________
Maureen Sinnott, A/Chief Financial Officer
Veterans Affairs Canada
Charlottetown, PE

II. Statement of Authorities (unaudited)

Quarterly Financial Report for the Quarter Ended June 30, 2014

Fiscal year 2014-15
(in thousands of dollars) Planned expenditures for the year ending
March 31, 2015*
Expended during the quarter ended
June 30 2014
Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 10 - Veterans Review and Appeal Board Operating expenditures 9,478 2,375 2,375
Statutory authorities - Contributions to Employee Benefit Plans - Program 1,410 353 353
Total Budgetary authorities 10,888 2,728 2,728
Non-budgetary authorities - 0 0
Total Authorities 10,888 2,728 2,728

*Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter-end.

Quarterly Financial Report for the Quarter Ended June 30, 2015

Fiscal year 2015-16
(in thousands of dollars) Planned expenditures for the year ending
March 31, 2016
Expended during the quarter ended
June 30, 2015
Year to date used at quarter-end
Vote 10 - Veterans Review and Appeal Board Operating expenditures 9,461 2,476 2,476
Statutory authorities - Contributions to Employee Benefit Plans - Program 1,436 359 359
Total Budgetary authorities 10,897 2,835 2,835
Non-budgetary authorities 0 0 0
Total Authorities 10,897 2,835 2,835

*Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter-end.

 

Departmental budgetary expenditures by Standard Object (unaudited)

Quarterly Financial Report for the Quarter Ended June 30, 2014

Fiscal year 2014-15
Expenditures
(in thousands of dollars)
Total available for use for the year ending
March 31, 2015*
Used during the quarter ended
June 30, 2014
Year to date used at quarter-end
01 Personnel 9,955 2,262 2,262
02 Transportation and communications 609 140 140
03 Information 2 0 0
04 Professional and special services 145 23 23
05 Rentals 13 1 1
06 Repair and maintenance 28 1 1
07 Utilities, materials and supplies 65 3 3
08 Acquisition of land, buildings and works 0 0 0
09 Acquisition of machinery and equipment 71 10 10
10 Transfer payments 0 0 0
11 Public debt charges 0 0 0
12 Other subsidies and payments 0 288 288
Total gross budgetary expenditures 10,888 2,728 2,728
Less Revenues netted against expenditures
Total Revenues netted against expenditures: 0 288 288
Total net budgetary expenditures 10,888 2,728 2,728

Quarterly Financial Report for the quarter ended June 30, 2015

Fiscal year 2015-16
Expenditures
(in thousands of dollars)
Total available for use for the year ending
March 31, 2016*
Used during the quarter ended
June 30, 2015
Year to date used at quarter-end
01 Personnel 9,982 2,679 2,679
02 Transportation and communications 512 117 117
03 Information 4 0 0
04 Professional and special services 310 28 28
05 Rentals 11 1 1
06 Repair and maintenance 26 0 0
07 Utilities, materials and supplies 51 7 7
08 Acquisition of land, buildings and works 0 0 0
09 Acquisition of machinery and equipment 1 3 3
10 Transfer payments 0 0 0
11 Public debt charges 0 0 0
12 Other subsidies and payments 0 0 0
Total gross budgetary expenditures 10,897 2,835 2,835
Less Revenues netted against expenditures
Total Revenues netted against expenditures: 0 0 0
Total net budgetary expenditures 10,897 2,835 2,835

*Includes only Authorities available for use and granted by Parliament at quarter-end.

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