Response to Parliamentary Committees and External Audits

Response to parliamentary committees

In February 2013, the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities issued its Sixth Report on "Innovative Transportation Technologies."  The Report included 23 recommendations for the Government. Transport Canada supports the findings of the study and is contributing to transportation innovation, research, and technology adoption as detailed in the Government Response, which was presented in the House of Commons on June 17, 2013.

Transport Canada has not received any recommendations from any reports tabled by the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications, which required a response during fiscal year 2013-14. However, a response will be provided during fiscal year 2014-15 following the tabling of the Committee’s Eighth Report, One Size Doesn't Fit All: The Future Growth and Competitiveness of Canadian Air Travel.

Response to the Auditor General (including to the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development)

Chapter 7—Federal Search and Rescue Activities was a horizontal audit of the Department of National Defence, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and Transport Canada with respect to the administration of search and rescue activities and the departments’ capacity to support search and rescue activities.  For Transport Canada, the audit looked specifically at prevention activities to reduce the number and severity of search and rescue incidents.  Transport Canada is responsible for regulating emergency beacons, which are required on all commercially operated vessels and aircraft to help identify their location in the event of an air or marine search and rescue incident.  The audit found that emergency beacons do reduce search time and recommended that Transport Canada consider extending their use to classes of boats and planes not currently using them.  The Department accepted the recommendation from the Office of the Auditor General and has implemented the commitments made in its management response, which is published in the report that is available on the Office of the Auditor General’s website. 

The horizontal follow-up audit of Internal Controls over Financial Reporting examined whether the seven departments that had been audited in 2006 and 2011 were on track for completing their first full risk-based assessment of internal controls over financial reporting, including identifying and addressing gaps and weaknesses, and whether or not they had implemented a program of ongoing monitoring.  The audit found that Transport Canada had documented business processes and internal controls, and had tested the design and effectiveness of those controls.  To address the recommendation, the Department will identify gaps and weaknesses and put in place a continuous monitoring program.  The audit report that includes the management response of Chapter 1—Follow-up Audit of Internal Controls over Financial Reporting is available on the Office of the Auditor General’s website.

Transport Canada is responsible for the regulatory framework required for the safe operation of federal railways in Canada, overseeing whether federal railways comply with this framework, and taking enforcement action where necessary.  Chapter 7—Oversight of Rail Safety – Transport Canada examined whether the Department had adequately overseen the management of federal railways’ safety management systems (SMS), and looked at the rail safety program’s regulatory framework, oversight activities, human resources, and quality assurance program.  The audit concluded that Transport Canada had made limited progress in transitioning to SMS and needed to address significant weaknesses in order to ensure that the operations of federal railways are in compliance with the regulatory framework.  The Department accepted all of the recommendations and has begun work on implementing an accelerated action plan to advance the rail safety program.

External audits conducted by the Public Service Commission of Canada or the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages

Not applicable

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