2014-15 Departmental Performance Report

Table of Contents

Minister's Message

Chief Executive Officer's Message

Section I: Organizational Expenditure Overview

Section II: Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Section III: Supplementary Information

Section IV: Organizational Contact Information

Appendix: Definitions

Endnotes


Minister’s Message

Minister Responsible for Parks Canada, Catherine McKenna

As Minister responsible for Parks Canada, I am pleased to present the 2014-15 Performance Report. This report outlines Parks Canada's results and many achievements that support the Agency's integrated mandate and benefit Canadians.

Throughout its history, Parks Canada has worked to expand Canada's network of protected areas. 2014-15 saw the formal creation of Ukkusiksalik National Park, Nááts'ihch'oh National Park Reserve and Rouge National Urban Park – Canada's first national urban park. Further progress was realized with the creation of Qausuittuq National Park and Mealy Mountains National Park Reserve. Many of these important conservation achievements have come after many years – in some cases decades – of work by dedicated Parks Canada staff.

As we near the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017, Parks Canada is celebrating national historic sites, commemorating moments that defined our nation and helping Canadians experience their rich history and heritage in a special way. Key events in 2014-15 included the 150th anniversary of the Québec and Charlottetown conferences, the 200th anniversary of the births of Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir George-Étienne Cartier – Fathers of Confederation, important anniversaries of the First and Second World Wars and the creation of Canada's national flag.

One of the Agency's most significant accomplishments of 2014 was the discovery of Sir John Franklin's flagship, HMS Erebus. In collaboration with a wide range of public and private-sector partners, the HMS Erebus discovery was realized through a unique combination of Inuit traditional knowledge and cutting-edge technology. The wreck site is now officially protected, ensuring it will be conserved, protected and presented to Canadians for all time. Parks Canada continued with the investigation of the wreck of HMS Erebus and the search for HMS Terror in 2015 to further understanding of this fascinating chapter in Canadian history.

Parks Canada's iconic locations represent Canada's natural and cultural heritage. Ongoing investments in national historic sites, national parks and heritage canals will improve the state of assets at these treasured places and preserve them for the future, while contributing to creating jobs and strengthening Canada's tourism industry.

In its more than 100-year history, Parks Canada has established a reputation for leadership in conservation and excellence as Canada's largest provider of natural and cultural tourism. Our government is committed to ensuring Parks Canada is positioned to build on this legacy for years to come.

I invite all Canadians to fully experience Canada's incredible national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas and learn more about our environment and rich history.

original signed by

The Honourable Catherine McKenna, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada


Chief Executive Officer’s Message

Parks Canada Chief Executive Officer, Daniel Watson

I am pleased to submit this 2014-15 Performance Report demonstrating Parks Canada's accomplishments. Through the dedication of team members across the country and effective relationships with Aboriginal partners, the private sector and others, Parks Canada is connecting more Canadians with their exceptional natural and cultural treasures.

The discovery of Sir John Franklin's HMS Erebus was one of Parks Canada's most significant achievements and one that will make an enduring impact on Canadian history. Captain Franklin's expedition was an international mystery solved through the use of modern technology combined with Inuit oral tradition. Parks Canada continues to work in partnership with others to investigate the wrecks of the Franklin expedition and bring this story to Canadians.

Parks Canada is taking action to protect Canada's irreplaceable cultural heritage at our national historic sites. With restoration projects across the country, including the Fortifications of Québec, and Prince Edward Island's Province House –the birthplace of Confederation, Parks Canada is protecting these treasured places and giving our past a future.

As a recognized leader in the management of protected areas, Parks Canada undertook key initiatives to help restore the ecology in national parks and is contributing to the recovery of species at risk through its Conservation and Restoration Program, the most diverse and progressive program in the Agency's history.

Equally important for the future, Parks Canada is renewing visitor facilities and continues to work to engage urban and new Canadians with innovative visitor experience offers, including the introduction of oTENTiks and holding Learn-to-Camp events. By facilitating a connection to our parks and sites, Parks Canada is helping to foster an appreciation for nature and building a "community of stewards" among Canadians of all ages.

This approach to conservation, which focuses on inspiring a new generation of youth to experience and connect with nature, has gained international recognition from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) – the world's largest and most influential conservation organization.

As a result of all our efforts, visitation to parks and sites increased by five percent in 2014-15 and is expected to continue to rise. This would not have been possible without the unwavering commitment of the entire Parks Canada team and the dedication and leadership of my predecessor, Alan Latourelle.

These accomplishments makes this one of the proudest periods in the history of Parks Canada.

original signed by

Daniel Watson
Chief Executive Officer, Parks Canada Agency


Section I: Organizational Expenditure Overview

Organizational Profile

Appropriate Minister: The Honourable Catherine McKenna, P.C., M.P.

Institutional Head: Daniel Watson, Chief Executive Officer

Ministerial Portfolio: Environment and Climate Change Canada

Enabling Instrument(s):

  • Parks Canada Agency Act; [i]
  • Canada National Parks Act; [ii]
  • Rouge National Urban Park Act; [iii]
  • Historic Sites and Monuments Act; [iv]
  • Canada National Marine Conservation Areas Act; [v]
  • Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park Act; [vi]
  • Historic Canal Regulations pursuant to the Department of Transport Act; [vii]
  • Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act; [viii]
  • Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act; [ix] and
  • Species at Risk Act.[x]

Year of Incorporation / Commencement: 1998

Organizational Context

Raison d’être

The Minister of Environment and Climate Change is responsible for the Parks Canada Agency. Parks Canada protects and presents nationally significant examples of Canada’s natural and cultural heritage, and fosters public understanding, appreciation and enjoyment in ways that ensure the ecological and commemorative[xi] integrity of these places for present and future generations. National parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas, of which Parks Canada is the proud steward, offer to Canadians the opportunity to live meaningful experiences and to personally connect with these heritage places. In carrying out its responsibilities, Parks Canada works in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, stakeholders and neighbouring communities.

Mandate

On behalf of the people of Canada, we protect and present nationally significant examples of Canada’s natural and cultural heritage, and foster public understanding, appreciation and enjoyment in ways that ensure the ecological and commemorative integrity of these places for present and future generations.

Vision

Canada’s treasured natural and historic places will be a living legacy, connecting hearts and minds to a stronger, deeper understanding of the very essence of Canada.

Responsibilities

As the first national park service in the world, Parks Canada is responsible for including representative examples of Canada’s natural regions in a system of national parks[xii]. The system, which is 77 percent complete, represents the diversity of natural regions and landscapes in Canada. Forty-six national parks represent 30 of Canada’s 39 terrestrial regions, and protect approximately 328,400 square kilometres of Canada’s lands. In managing national parks, Parks Canada is mandated to maintain or restore ecological integrity, and to provide Canadians with opportunities to discover and enjoy them.

The system of national historic sites[xiii] includes: 979 national historic sites, of which 168 are administered by Parks Canada; 690 national historic persons; and 475 events of national historic significance. The system is developed in collaboration with Canadians to define important aspects of Canada’s history and contributes to the recognition and celebration of significant anniversaries, such as Canada’s upcoming 150th birthday. The long-term objective is a system that represents the breadth and diversity of Canadian history. Parks Canada brings to life the key moments of Canada’s history at the national historic sites it administers through special programming that offers unique opportunities for visitors to personally connect with and experience these places.

The system of national marine conservation areas[xiv], which is 17 percent complete, represents five of Canada’s 29 marine regions, and protects approximately 14,800 square kilometres of Canada’s marine and freshwater ecosystems. Canada’s four national marine conservation areas span two oceans and the Great Lakes. The Agency works to foster the ecologically sustainable use of marine resources while protecting its key features for the benefit and enjoyment of Canadians, visitors and coastal communities.

Canada’s first national urban park, Rouge National Urban Park, provides a unique opportunity to connect urban Canadians to their natural and cultural heritage, and protects the park’s natural ecosystems and cultural landscapes as well as maintain its native wildlife and the health of those ecosystems.

Parks Canada’s nine heritage canals support commercial and recreational boating and include water management as well as management of bridge and dam infrastructure for the benefit of Canadians.

In 2014-15, Parks Canada welcomed more than 21 million people to the heritage places it administers.

Additional national programs focus on other heritage designations, including heritage railway stations, heritage lighthouses, federal heritage buildings and canadian heritage rivers.

Parks Canada demonstrates leadership in heritage conservation both nationally and internationally. In Canada, the Agency administers the National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program, a contribution program for non-federally-owned national historic sites of Canada. Internationally, the Agency represents Canada as a State member for the World Heritage Convention and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and through participation in other international organizations, conventions and agreements.

More information on Parks Canada’s mandate and responsibilities is available on its website[xv].

Strategic Outcome(s) and Program Alignment Architecture

Strategic Outcome: Canadians have a strong sense of connection to their national parks, national historic sites, heritage canals and national marine conservation areas and these protected places are experienced in ways that leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of present and future generations.

  • 1.1 Program: Heritage Places Establishment
    • 1.1.1 Sub-Program: National Park Establishment and Expansion
    • 1.1.2 Sub-Program: National Marine Conservation Area Establishment
    • 1.1.3 Sub-Program: National Historic Site Designations
    • 1.1.4 Sub-Program: Other Heritage Places Designations

  • 1.2 Program: Heritage Places Conservation
    • 1.2.1 Sub-Program: National Park Conservation
    • 1.2.2 Sub-Program: National Urban Park Conservation
    • 1.2.3 Sub-Program: National Marine Area Conservation
    • 1.2.4 Sub-Program: National Historic Site Conservation
    • 1.2.5 Sub-Program: Other Heritage Places Conservation

  • 1.3 Program: Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support
    • 1.3.1 Sub-Program: Heritage Places Promotion
    • 1.3.2 Sub-Program: Partnering and Participation

  • 1.4 Program: Visitor Experience
    • 1.4.1 Sub-Program: National Park Visitor Experience
    • 1.4.2 Sub-Program: National Urban Park Visitor Experience
    • 1.4.3 Sub-Program: National Marine Conservation Area Visitor Experience
    • 1.4.4 Sub-Program: National Historic Site Visitor Experience
    • 1.4.5 Sub-Program: Heritage Canal Visitor Experience

  • 1.5 Program: Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management
    • 1.5.1 Sub-Program: Townsite Management
    • 1.5.2 Sub-Program: Highway Management
    • 1.5.3 Sub-Program: Heritage Canal Management

  • Internal Services
Organizational Priorities
Priority Type1 Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
Increase revenue through more visitors and more revenue per visitor Ongoing Visitor Experience
Summary of Progress

In 2014-15, Parks Canada welcomed 21.8 million visitors, an increase of 5% over the previous year. Visitor revenues increased by 8% to $90.3 million from $83.8 million. These increases follow targeted efforts undertaken by Parks Canada to facilitate opportunities for Canadians to visit and to develop their own personal connections with their natural and cultural heritage. These initiatives included launching a national promotional campaign, supporting cross-promotional initiatives in urban markets such as Montreal, developing Park Canada’s merchandise collections, expanding the Xplorers Program[xvi], introducing a new program, Club Parka[xvii], aimed at pre-school aged children, offering 22 Learn-to Camp events, installing 114 oTENTiks, improving online reservation capabilities, and upgrading the camping offer and interpretive programming at many heritage places.

1 Type is defined as follows: previously committed to—committed to in the first or second fiscal year prior to the subject year of the report; ongoing—committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the report; and new—newly committed to in the reporting year of the Report on Plans and Priorities or the Departmental Performance Report.

Priority Type Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
Asset Strategy: Assessment of Asset Portfolio Ongoing Heritage Places Conservation

Visitor Experience

Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management
Summary of Progress

As of March 31, 2015, Parks Canada completed a strategic assessment of 93% of its built asset portfolio to identify highest priority assets for program delivery. The Agency will complete the work in 2015-16. The results of this exercise will inform investment decisions.



Priority Type Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
Conservation Gains Ongoing Heritage Places Conservation

Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

Visitor Experience
Summary of Progress

In 2014-15, through the Conservation and Restoration Program (previously known as Action on the Ground), Parks Canada undertook ecological restoration projects in national parks and national marine conservation areas across the country. The Conservation and Restoration Program is the most significant restoration effort in Parks Canada’s history, with unprecedented investments to maintain or improve ecological integrity and conditions for species at risk. This on-going work has resulted in improvements to ecological integrity indicators in 20 national parks. The Agency continued the re-introduction of fire in ecosystems; conducting 23 prescribed fires in 12 national parks. Action planning for six of the seven national parks with five or more species at risk is underway.

Parks Canada focuses its cultural resource conservation efforts and investments on the most urgently needed work. Conservation work was undertaken at Point Clark Lighthouse National Historic Site to eliminate moisture penetration into the rubble core as well as repair large vertical cracks in the masonry wall. Conservation work at Province House National Historic Site continued in 2014. This multi-year project is focused on addressing the structural stability of the building as well as roof, window and water infiltration issues. At the Fortifications of Québec National Historic Site, repairs were made to the King’s Bastion sector of the fortification walls.

In November 2014, the Government of Canada announced a $2.567 billion multi-year infrastructure investment in Parks Canada’s built asset portfolio. This investment will allow Parks Canada to improve the condition of its built heritage assets over the next five years.



Priority Type Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
Contribution to Road to 2017 New Heritage Places Conservation

Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

Visitor Experience
Summary of Progress

As Canada approaches its 150th birthday in 2017, the Government is encouraging Canadians to explore this country’s defining moments. Parks Canada worked with partners on a variety of Road to 2017 initiatives designed to raise Canadians' awareness and appreciation of their history and heritage. In 2014-15, the Agency marked significant anniversaries such as the final year of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, the 150th anniversaries of the Charlottetown and Québec Confederation conferences and the 200th birthdays of Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir George-Étienne Cartier, with a variety of programs and events including character interactions, plays and concerts, and plaque-unveiling ceremonies. This programming, closely linked to Parks Canada places, reached thousands of Canadians and contributed to the Agency’s overall increases in both visitation and revenues. Parks Canada laid the groundwork for Hometown Heroes, a coast-to-coast initiative aimed at commemorating the First and Second World Wars by telling the stories of civilians and members of the armed forces who have ties with Parks Canada places and nearby communities.



Priority Type Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
New guiding narrative for history New Heritage Places Conservation

Visitor Experience
Summary of Progress

The creation of a new framework for history at Parks Canada national historic sites is in progress. In 2014-15, Parks Canada developed historical narratives in keeping with Canada’s history. The project is continuing in alignment with Road to 2017 initiatives.



Priority Type Strategic Outcome(s) [and/or] Program(s)
Strategic and proactive branding approach for promotion New Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

Visitor Experience
Summary of Progress

With the launch of its strategic branding approach for promotion, Parks Canada reached out to target audiences, seeking to develop or deepen life-long personal connections between Canadians and their heritage places. Various initiatives were introduced or enhanced in 2014-15 in support of this multi-year plan. A new approach for promotion was launched and a national tourism campaign was featured in cinemas and popular social media channels reaching millions of Canadians ahead of the 2014 tourism season to encourage visitation. Proactive media relations with the tourism industry reached over 4.4 million readers. Parks Canada heritage places and experiences available to visitors were featured in the “Travel Guide to Canada”, a key tool for Canadian and international travel agents and tour operators. Parks Canada participated in a number of winter festivals including the Québec Winter Carnival, Montréal en Lumière, the International Pride Celebration in Toronto, and Ottawa Winterlude where programming was targeted at youth and families in urban centres. Another national tourism campaign, launched at the end of 2014-15 ahead of the 2015 tourism season, aimed at building on the momentum generated by the previous campaign to continue increasing visitation.

Risk Analysis
Key Risks

Each year, Parks Canada reviews and updates its Corporate Risk Profile. In 2014-15, the Agency maintained four of its key corporate risks identified in 2013-14: Competitive Position, Environmental Forces, Asset Management and Natural Disasters. A fifth key corporate risk identified in 2013-14, Workforce Management, was removed. A summary of these risks and planned risk responses was included in the Agency’s 2014-15 Report on Plans and Priorities[xviii].

Parks Canada’s efforts at mitigating its key corporate risks are presented in the following table and narrative section.

Risk Risk Response Strategy Link to Program Alignment Architecture

Competitive Position

Parks Canada programs, services and experiences may be less attractive or less of an interest to Canadians compared to alternative leisure activities.

Parks Canada continued to target investments in demand-driven opportunities for visitors, and to leverage event and promotion opportunities linked to the Road to 2017 celebrations to increase visitation and Canadians' awareness and appreciation of their history and heritage. In early 2014, a new approach for promotion and a national tourism campaign were launched in cinemas across Canada and on popular social media channels, reaching millions of Canadians. As a result of these nation-wide efforts, Parks Canada welcomed 21.8 million visitors in 2014-15, an increase of 5% over the previous year.

Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

Visitor Experience

Environmental Forces

Environmental forces may limit the Agency’s ability to make improvements in ecological integrity in national parks and meet legal requirements related to Species at Risk.

The implementation of the Conservation and Restoration Program (previously known as Action on the Ground) continued in 2014-15, which led to improvements in ecological integrity indicators in 20 national parks. Action planning for six of the seven national parks with five or more species at risk progressed in 2014-15. The Agency also completed the fourth year of the Understanding Climate-Driven Ecological Change in Canada’s North Program. Detailed ecological maps have now been completed for 10 northern national parks, with two remaining maps to be completed in 2015-16. These maps will assist in predicting how plants and animals may respond to climate change.

Heritage Places Conservation

Natural Disasters

Natural disasters may damage infrastructure and lead to expenses, injury, loss of life and the loss of assets of national significance.

Parks Canada continued to update and exercise emergency and business continuity plans, and to provide emergency response staff with ongoing training and awareness to ensure a state of readiness in the event of a natural disaster. The Agency implemented measures to safeguard its built assets against the impacts of natural disasters, such as more resilient designs and materials.

Heritage Places Conservation

Visitor Experience

Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management

Asset Condition

Assets are continuing to deteriorate with the result that almost half of the Agency’s built assets are in poor to very poor condition.

Parks Canada continued reviewing its $16.1 billion built asset portfolio in 2014-15, the results of which helped to inform investment decisions that maximize the asset portfolio’s contribution to program delivery and contribute to long-term sustainability. The Agency continued to transition towards a rolling five-year investment planning cycle to manage investment priorities on a multi-year basis and improve project delivery. New governance measures to strengthen oversight and accountability were also introduced.

The infusion of $391.5 million over five years, announced by the Government of Canada in 2014, enabled the Agency to initiate work on certain highways, dams and bridges to address immediate pressures. With the additional funding of $2.567 billion, the Agency will be able to address the backlog of deferred work identified in a 2012 asset review.

Heritage Places Conservation

Visitor Experience

Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management



Competitive Position

Parks Canada protected heritage places are significant economic drivers, with a contribution of over $3.3 billion annually to the Canadian economy, and to hundreds of communities across Canada, many in remote and rural areas.

Canadian travellers have a wide array of available travel choices, including low cost, low-effort all-inclusive vacations. Consequently, some opt for international destinations. However, in 2014-15, a low Canadian dollar made domestic vacations more attractive.

Changing demographics contribute to changing leisure and tourism patterns, which in turn impacts visitation to Parks Canada sites. One in five Canadians are foreign-born, and most new immigrants settle in urban areas. More than 80 percent of Canadians are now living in urban areas. Urban and new Canadians are under-represented in Parks Canada’s visitor base. In order to maintain its relevance to Canadians, the Agency is reaching out to these new audiences to attract visitors to its places, since it has been shown that 90 percent of those who have visited a national park report a “sense of connection”, compared to just 20 percent of those who have not visited.

To mitigate its competitive position risk, Parks Canada continued to target investments in tourism media and promotions, cross promotion, trip planning tools, product enhancements and visitor related assets. In 2014-15, to better appeal to the demands of visitors for diversified accommodations, the Agency installed oTENTiks, piloted an equipped campsite program and expanded the availability of the Explora app. As well, the Agency leveraged event and promotion opportunities linked to the Road to 2017 celebrations by marking significant anniversaries associated with Confederation and the 200th birthdays of Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir George-Étienne Cartier, and by working collaboratively with other federal departments and agencies. In early 2014, a national tourism promotional campaign was featured in cinemas across Canada and on popular social media channels, reaching millions of Canadians.

As a result of these on-going nation-wide mitigation efforts, Parks Canada welcomed 21.8 million visitors in 2014-15, an increase of 5% over the previous year. This is the largest increase the Agency has experienced in 15 years; a positive sign that the collective actions the Agency is taking to address this risk are starting to have the desired effect.

Environmental Forces

Parks Canada recognizes that its ability to maintain or improve ecological integrity in national parks and meet legal requirements related to species at risk may be hindered by external environmental forces such as invasive species, hyper-abundant species, and habitat loss or impairment. To mitigate this risk and support ecosystem resilience, Parks Canada continued to implement the Conservation and Restoration Program in 2014-15, which resulted in improvements to ecological integrity indicators in 20 national parks.

Building on this success, in 2014, the Agency approved funding of more than $80 million over five years to restore ecological processes (e.g. carrying out prescribed fires in national parks with fire-dependent ecosystems) and connectivity (e.g. removing barriers to the movement of Inner Bay of Fundy Atlantic salmon in Fundy National Park); to control invasive species (e.g. Sitka black-tailed deer in Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site) and hyper-abundant species (e.g. moose in Cape Breton Highlands National Park); and to support the recovery of species at risk (e.g. propagating and planting disease resistant whitebark and limber pines in the mountain parks). With additional activities in the areas of action planning and critical habitat protection for species at risk, environmental impact assessment, and law enforcement, the Agency has a well-established suite of response strategies to address this risk.

Natural Disasters

Events affecting Parks Canada operations and Canadians in communities within and surrounding parks and sites include wildfires, floods, avalanches, landslides, hurricanes, storm surges, blizzards and hail. These types of events may impose unforeseen expenses, and require the Agency to reallocate internal resources in order to respond and to ensure the ongoing safety of visitors and personnel, and protect nationally significant cultural resources.

To mitigate this risk, staff received Incident Command System training, Visitor Safety Plans were renewed, and table top and live emergency management exercises were carried out. The Agency implemented measures to safeguard its built assets against the impacts of natural disasters. For example, the major floods of June 2013 caused significant damage to the Carrot Creek bridges located on the Trans-Canada Highway in Banff National Park, including the complete collapse of one bridge. When replacing the damaged assets, the Agency implemented more resistant bridge and channel technology to improve resilience against future floods, increase the service life of the assets and reduce the severity and likelihood of road closures. An engineering study was commissioned in 2014-15 to identify measures to best protect critical highway assets against similar flood events and inform the design of future infrastructure projects.

Asset Condition

As one of the largest federal custodians, Parks Canada manages assets that support 46 national parks, 168 national historic sites, including nine heritage canals, one national urban park, four national marine conservation areas, and five townsites. The diversity of its $16.1 billion asset portfolio is extensive, and includes heritage assets, mainly found in national historic sites; contemporary visitor experience assets such as trails, campgrounds and visitor facilities; highway assets (over 1,000 km passing through 18 national parks and one national historic site); and waterway assets located within nine heritage canals in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia spanning a total of 625 km.

In 2012, Parks Canada undertook a review of its asset holdings focused on updating and confirming asset condition ratings, current replacement values and estimates of deferred work. The results of this review and subsequent third-party validation highlighted that over half of the Agency's assets were in poor or very poor condition and required significant investments in maintenance and recapitalization. The deferred work was valued at $2.8 billion (in 2012 dollars).

To mitigate this risk, Parks Canada continued reviewing its built asset portfolio to identify the highest priority assets for program delivery. As of March 31, 2015, the Agency had completed this strategic prioritization for 93% of the asset portfolio.

The Agency continued to develop a rolling five-year investment planning cycle to manage investments on a multi-year basis and improve project delivery. This included the introduction of an investment program framework. Leadership and accountability for the investment program and project delivery were strengthened through the appointment of two new Associate Vice-Presidents. In addition, the Agency invested in the development of an asset management information system which will enhance the quality of asset information and facilitate the application of consistent asset management practices across the Agency.

The infusion of $391.5 million over five years, announced by the Government of Canada in 2014, enabled the Agency to invest in highways, dams and bridges to address immediate pressures. With the additional funding of $2.567 billion, the Agency will be able to address the backlog of deferred work and improve the condition of its built asset portfolio to fair or good.

Actual Expenditures

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending
(authorities used)
Difference
(actual minus planned)
612,465,134 659,695,134 832,051,405 721,799,860 62,104,726
*Throughout this document, totals may differ within and between tables due to rounding of figures.

The Agency’s 2014-15 planned spending represents the amount approved by Parliament through the Main Estimates plus other adjustments known at the time of publishing the 2014-15 Report on Plans and Priorities as well as projected funds carried over from 2013-14. In addition, throughout the year, new and renewed supplementary funding added a total of $172.4 million to planned spending, increasing total authorities to $832.1 million. The main items contributing to this increase include funding to improve highways and bridges located in national parks, funding for the costs of maternity and severance benefits, funding to support the Trans Canada Trail Foundation and adjustments to reflect the total carried over from 2013-14.

The actual spending of $721.8 million reflects the Agency expenditures as reported in the Public Accounts.

Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalents [FTEs])
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3,972 4,224 252
*Throughout this document, totals may differ within and between tables due to rounding of figures. The FTE numbers include students.

Parks Canada utilized 4,224 FTEs in 2014-15, an increase of 252 FTEs (6%) over planned FTEs of 3,972. This difference is mainly a result of increases associated with new supplementary funding.

Budgetary Performance Summary for Strategic Outcome(s) and Program(s) (dollars)
Strategic Outcome(s), Program(s) and Internal Services 2014-15 Main Estimates 2014-15 Planned Spending 2015–16 Planned Spending 2016–17 Planned Spending 2014-15 Total Authorities Available for Use 2014-15 Actual Spending (authorities used)* 2013–14 Actual Spending (authorities used)* 2012–13 Actual Spending (authorities used)*
Strategic Outcome: Canadians have a strong sense of connection to their national parks, national historic sites, heritage canals and national marine conservation areas and these protected places are experienced in ways that leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of present and future generations.
1.1 Heritage Places Establishment 23,867,969 30,674,153 27,662,536 21,492,981 45,989,871 21,199,396 27,859,372 14,874,251
1.2 Heritage Places Conservation 157,590,219 171,042,215 198,889,653 199,705,844 158,337,176 137,267,951 140,659,981 146,398,627
1.3 Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support 39,448,240 42,091,031 37,739,692 37,750,887 45,825,382 42,872,689 43,793,272 52,372,806
1.4 Visitor Experience 238,298,011 247,751,323 387,759,392 431,135,478 330,389,382 291,314,470 263,655,992 239,572,389
1.5 Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management 93,460,532 102,503,020 343,350,853 345,563,326 156,530,074 136,302,253 118,681,423 91,782,776
Subtotal 552,664,971 594,061,742 995,402,126 1,035,648,516 737,071,885 628,956,758 594,650,040 545,000,849
Internal
Services
Subtotal
59,800,163 65,633,392 122,220,877 123,394,101 94,979,520 92,843,101 96,291,316 85,546,742
Total 612,465,134 659,695,134 1,117,623,003 1,159,042,617 832,051,405 721,799,860 690,941,356 630,547,591
*Totals may differ within and between tables due to rounding of figures.

Actual spending since 2012-13 has increased mainly due to new funding received for improvements to highways, bridges and dams located in national parks and along historic canals.

Planned spending continues to increase in 2015-16 and 2016-17 to reflect the $2.567 billion over five years of funding announced in November 2014 to address the backlog of deferred work and improve the condition of assets administered by the Agency.

Alignment of Spending With the Whole-of-Government Framework

Alignment of 2014-15 Actual Spending With the Whole-of-Government Framework[xix] (dollars)
Strategic Outcome Program Spending Area Government of Canada Outcome 2014−15
Planned Spending
Canadians have a strong sense of connection to their national parks, national historic sites, heritage canals and national marine conservation areas and these protected places are experienced in ways that leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of present and future generations. Heritage Places Establishment Social Affairs A vibrant Canadian culture and heritage 21,199,396
Heritage Places Conservation Economic Affairs A clean and healthy environment 137,267,951
Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support Social Affairs A vibrant Canadian culture and heritage 42,872,689
Visitor Experience Social Affairs A vibrant Canadian culture and heritage 291,314,470
Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management Social Affairs A safe and secure Canada 136,302,253


Total Spending by Spending Area (dollars)
Spending Area Total Planned Spending Total Actual Spending
Economic Affairs 171,042,215 137,267,951
Social Affairs 423,019,527 491,688,808
International Affairs - -
Government Affairs - -

Departmental Spending Trend

The following graph depicts the Agency’s spending trend over a six-year period. For the period from 2012-13 to 2014-15, the spending represents the actual expenditures as reported in the Public Accounts. For the period from 2015-16 to 2017-18, the planned spending reflects approved funding by Treasury Board to support the Agency’s Strategic Outcome, as well as infrastructure investments announced by the Government of Canada.

The 2013-14 and 2014-15 spending shows an increase mainly due to funding received for improvements to highways, bridges and dams located in national parks and along historic canals. The increase over fiscal years 2015-16 to 2017-18 reflects the additional funding of $2.567 billion over five years announced in November 2014 to address the backlog of deferred work and improve the condition of assets administered by the Agency.

Expenditures by Vote

For information on Parks Canada’s organizational voted and statutory expenditures, consult the Public Accounts of Canada 2015[xx], which is available on the Public Works and Government Services Canada website[xxi].


Section II: Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Strategic Outcome:

Parks Canada has a single Strategic Outcome, which reads as follows:

Canadians have a strong sense of connection to their national parks, national historic sites, heritage canals and national marine conservation areas and these protected places are experienced in ways that leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of present and future generations.

Program 1.1: Heritage Places Establishment

Description

This program aims to establish heritage places in order to conserve Canada’s natural and cultural heritage and make it available to Canadians for their benefit and enjoyment, thus fostering a strong sense of connection to our natural heritage and history. This program also supports Canada’s involvement in the internationally shared objective of protecting and commemorating the best of the world’s natural and cultural heritage. By establishing national parks and national marine conservation areas in each of Canada’s natural terrestrial and marine regions, this program ensures the protection of representative examples of Canada’s natural diversity. Likewise, the designation and commemoration of historic places, persons and events in communities across Canada ensures our history remains a living legacy for all Canadians. Establishment or designation is achieved through feasibility studies, public nominations, research, consulting with Aboriginal peoples, stakeholders and the general public, negotiating with other governments and Aboriginal organizations, recommendations from advisory bodies and fulfilling legislative requirements. This process results in established national parks and national marine conservation areas and designated national historic sites, persons and events of Canada and other heritage places.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending
(authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
23,867,969 30,674,153 45,989,871 21,199,396 (9,474,757)


Human Resources (Full-Time Equivalents [FTEs])
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
50 60 10


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
The systems of national parks and national marine conservation areas are representative of Canada’s natural terrestrial and marine regions. Number of represented terrestrial natural regions in the system of national parks. 30 by March 2015. 30
The commemoration of designated places, persons and events of national historic significance reflects the story of Canada. Number of commemorations of places, persons or events related to key anniversaries leading to Canada's sesquicentennial. 3 by March 2015. 3


Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Increasing the representation of terrestrial natural regions

At the beginning of this reporting period, the national parks system consisted of 44 national parks and national park reserves representing 28 of the 39 terrestrial natural regions. By furthering the Qausuittuq and Mealy Mountains proposals, Parks Canada met its target of increasing the number of represented terrestrial regions to 30.

For the Qausuittuq proposal, Parks Canada and the Qikiqtani Inuit Association signed an Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreement (IIBA) to establish Qausuittuq National Park in Nunavut. An IIBA deals with anything that could either impact or benefit Inuit including: cooperative management, continuation of Inuit harvesting rights, and Inuit employment and economic benefits. An interim land withdrawal was renewed in December 2014 to protect the area until the park is formally established. The legislation to protect Qausuittuq National Park under the Canada National Parks Act received Royal Assent in June 2015.

For the Mealy Mountains proposal, Parks Canada and the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador signed a land transfer agreement to create a national park reserve in the Mealy Mountains region of Labrador. A Park Impact and Benefit Agreement with the Innu Nation was concluded and confirms cooperative management and planning of the park between the Innu and Parks Canada. The Agency is working to finalize collaborative relationships with other Aboriginal groups.

As the final step in the establishment process, two national parks were formally designated under the Canada National Parks Act in 2014-15. Ukkusiksalik National Park was brought under the Act through an Order-in-Council in August 2014, and the legislation to protect Nááts’ihch’oh National Park Reserve received Royal Assent in December 2014.

Commemorations related to key anniversaries leading to Canada’s sesquicentennial

Parks Canada met its commemorations target. Of the 12 commemorations of places, persons and events of national historic significance that took place in 2014-15, three were related to key anniversaries leading to Canada’s sesquicentennial. These were the 200th anniversary of the births of two Fathers of Confederation: Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir George-Étienne Cartier, both national historic persons, and the Secret Intelligence Activities at Camp X (a training school for Canadian and American secret agents during the Second World War), a national historic event.

Commemorations are a celebration of designations and involve the unveiling of the official plaque for the nationally significant place, person or event. In meeting its commemorations target, Parks Canada continues to ensure the system of national historic designations reflects Canada's rich history.

Variances in 1.1 – Heritage Places Establishment

Actual spending for this program is $9.5 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to the reprofile of planned spending for the establishment of new parks and the development of Rouge National Urban Park to future years to better reflect implementation and development plans.

Sub-Program 1.1.1: National Park Establishment and Expansion

Description

This program entails the establishment of at least one national park in each of Canada’s 39 natural regions, in accordance with the National Parks System Plan. The completion of the system will protect representative examples of Canada’s natural diversity, and provide opportunities for Canadians to experience, understand and appreciate these places. Five steps are involved in the process to establish a national park: identify areas representative of a natural region; select an optimum national park candidate from the list of representative areas; assess the feasibility of establishing the proposed park through studies and consultations; negotiate new park agreements, including any that may be required with Aboriginal peoples or organizations; and formally establish the national park in legislation. The General Class Contribution Program[xxii] is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
16,830,690 9,290,581 (7,540,109)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
14 10 (4)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
National parks are created in unrepresented regions and some existing national parks are completed and expanded. Number of unrepresented regions with demonstrable progress in advancing through steps towards establishing national parks. Demonstrable progress in 1 unrepresented region by March 2015. 2
Number of unfinished national parks with increased targeted land holdings. 3 by March 2015. 1
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Progress toward establishing and expanding national parks

Parks Canada exceeded its target by continuing to make demonstrable progress towards establishing national parks in two unrepresented natural regions: Northwestern Boreal Uplands in the Northwest Territories (Thaidene Nene proposal) and the Manitoba Lowlands (Manitoba Lowlands proposal).

For the Thaidene Nene proposal, Parks Canada and the Northwest Territory Métis Nation made substantial progress on a draft Impact and Benefit Agreement. Information meetings on the proposed national park reserve were held with interested parties and stakeholders. Parks Canada and the Government of the Northwest Territories also began working to formalize how they will collaborate post-devolution on the work to define a boundary for the proposed national park reserve.

For the Manitoba Lowlands proposal, progress was made on consultations with Aboriginal groups as well as initial identification of areas for inclusion in a potential national park.

Pursuant to an evaluation of the National Park Establishment and Expansion Program[xxiii], completed in June 2014, the Agency has agreed to work to update the National Park System Plan, and to develop internal guidance that includes best practices and lessons learned to equip staff with a consistent framework to guide park establishment work.

In working to complete unfinished national parks, Parks Canada acquires land on a "willing seller, willing buyer" basis. In 2014-15, 278 hectares were acquired for addition to the Bruce Peninsula National Park.

Establishing Rouge National Urban Park

In 2014-15, Parks Canada continued to make significant progress towards establishing Rouge National Urban Park in the Greater Toronto Area.

In June 2014, the Rouge National Urban Park draft management plan was released and a formal public engagement process was undertaken from June to October 2014. Feedback gathered from public open houses, community events, an online survey and meetings with stakeholders and interested organizations was used to help finalize the draft plan. The legislation and management plan provide the highest level of protection for the Rouge in its history.

In terms of land assembly, an agreement was signed in December 2014 with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, the cities of Toronto, Markham and Pickering, and the regional municipalities of York and Durham. In March 2015, Transport Canada officially transferred 4,722 acres (19.1 km2) to Parks Canada. For the remaining lands identified for transfer, Parks Canada continued joint planning, surveying and impact assessment work with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority and other levels of government.

On May 15, 2015, the Rouge National Urban Park Act came into force.

Variances in 1.1.1 - National Park Establishment and Expansion

Actual spending for this sub-program is $7.5 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to the reprofile of planned spending for the establishment of new parks and the development of Rouge National Urban Park to future years to better reflect implementation and development plans.

Sub-Program 1.1.2: National Marine Conservation Area Establishment

Description

This program aims to establish at least one national marine conservation area in each of Canada’s 29 marine regions, in accordance with the National Marine Conservation Areas System Plan. The expansion and completion of the system will conserve representative examples of the diversity of Canada’s oceans and Great Lakes, and provide opportunities for Canadians to experience, understand and appreciate these places. Five steps are involved in the process to establish a national marine conservation area: identify areas representative of a marine region; select an optimum national marine conservation area candidate from the list of representative areas; assess the feasibility of establishing the proposed marine conservation area through studies and consultations; negotiate new national marine conservation area agreements, including any that may be required with Aboriginal peoples or organizations; and formally establish the national marine conservation area in legislation. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3,226,753 3,160,480 (66,273)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3 10 7


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
National marine conservation areas are created in unrepresented regions. Number of unrepresented regions with demonstrable progress in advancing through steps towards establishing national marine conservation areas. Demonstrable progress in 2 unrepresented regions by March 2015. 3
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada exceeded its target by making significant progress on the feasibility assessments for three national marine conservation area proposals in unrepresented marine regions.

With respect to the Lancaster Sound proposal (Lancaster Sound marine region in Nunavut), consultations on the 2010 boundary for the proposed national marine conservation area were undertaken with key stakeholders, including industry and non-government organizations, supplementing the information gathered during the community consultations undertaken the previous year. A traditional knowledge study was completed and will soon be published. The Steering Committee for the proposed Lancaster Sound national marine conservation area significantly advanced the development of the feasibility assessment report to be submitted to the Ministers of Environment for Canada and Nunavut and the President of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association recommending whether the proposed national marine conservation area is feasible and under what conditions. Submission of this report will complete the feasibility assessment phase.

Respecting the Southern Strait of Georgia proposal (Strait of Georgia marine region in British-Columbia), Parks Canada has significantly advanced the concept paper for the proposed national marine conservation area reserve and the analysis of boundary considerations. Engagement with First Nations continued.

Parks Canada also continued to work with the province of Quebec on the Îles de la Madeleine marine protected area study (Magdalen Shallows marine region in Quebec). Both governments worked together to advance the completion of a synthesis report summarizing the initiatives undertaken and the research done with respect to the study.

Finally, in June 2015, Parliament passed legislation that will enable the formal establishment of the Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area under the Canada National Marine Conservation Areas Act. The bill amended the Act to confirm that Ontario retains its existing authorities to manage the taking and transfer of water excluding bulk water transfers. This action was required by the 2007 establishment agreement with Ontario. With this amendment, Ontario has begun the process to transfer 10,880 square kilometres of lakebed and islands to Canada to manage as a national marine conservation area. Once the transfer is completed, the area will be formally established.

Variances in 1.1.2 - National Marine Conservation Area Establishment

The Agency has been implementing changes to improve its budget planning and reporting by program. The variance is mainly due to these improvements.

Sub-Program 1.1.3: National Historic Site Designations

Description

This program involves the designation of places, persons, and events of national historical significance. It includes screening nominations, performing historical and archaeological research, preparing submission reports, and obtaining ministerial approval, as well as systems planning, consultation with proponents and key stakeholders, and providing information to the general public. As most nominations for designation come from the public, the participation of Canadians in the identification, and commemoration of places, persons, and events of national historic significance is a key element of the program. The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada reviews all eligible nominations and recommends subjects to the Minister of the Environment, who makes the final decision regarding official designations. National historic sites, persons, and events reflect the determination and ingenuity of Canadians, and illustrate the richness and diversity of our nation’s history. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3,011,524 1,406,843 (1,604,681)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
30 25 (5)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Eligible places, persons and events are considered for national historic designation upon the recommendation of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada. Number of research reports completed for each eligible place, person and event. 1 research report for each eligible place, person and event by March 2015. 28
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Every year, new subjects of potential national historic significance are nominated by the public for consideration, and research reports for those subjects that meet the basic criteria are prepared for consideration by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada (HSMBC).

In 2014-15, Parks Canada met its target by submitting 28 research reports to the HSMBC in support of nominations for places, persons and events of national historic significance. Parks Canada continues to attribute much of its success in this area to the positive and productive relationships it has developed with the many Canadians engaged in the nomination process.

Parks Canada continued to align its work with Government of Canada commemoration priorities, such as the 150th anniversary of Confederation, and the 50th anniversary of the creation of Canada’s National Flag. This demonstrates that the Agency remains nimble and responsive to the designation and commemoration of places, persons and events of national historic significance, while providing increased opportunities for Canadians to enjoy their rich history.

Variances in 1.1.3 - National Historic Site Designations

The Agency has been implementing changes to improve its budget planning and reporting by program. The variance is mainly due to these improvements.

Sub-Program 1.1.4: Other Heritage Places Designations

Description

This program involves commemorating or designating federal heritage buildings, Canadian Heritage Rivers, heritage lighthouses and heritage railway stations. It also supports the nomination of World Heritage Sites in Canada which recognise natural and cultural heritage of outstanding universal value. Parks Canada works with other government departments, other levels of government and a wide range of partners to increase the number of these designations in Canada. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
7,605,186 7,341,492 (263,694)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3 15 12


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Other heritage places not administered by Parks Canada are considered for designation. Percentage of evaluations completed for federal buildings submitted to Parks Canada. 95% by March 2015. 100%
Number of lighthouses nominated for Heritage Lighthouse designation that have been reviewed. 100% by May 2015. 100%
Number of nominations for Canadian World Heritage Sites where Parks Canada has provided advice and review. 3 by March 2015. 3
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada exceeded its performance target related to the percentage of evaluations completed for federal buildings by 5%. Parks Canada’s Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office was able to complete all 46 evaluation requests received in year as well as address a backlog of 26 requests remaining from previous years. In total, 72 evaluations were completed.

Parks Canada received 349 lighthouse proposals for heritage designation under the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act. As of May 29, 2015, the Minister had considered all 349 lighthouses (100%) of which 74 were designated as Heritage Lighthouses upon the recommendation of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, bringing the lighthouse petition process to a successful close.

Parks Canada met its target for nominations for Canadian World Heritage Sites by providing advice for three sites: The Klondike, Pimachiowin Aki and Mistaken Point.

Variances in 1.1.4 – Other Heritage Places Designations

The Agency has been implementing changes to improve its budget planning and reporting by program. The variance is mainly due to these improvements.

Program 1.2: Heritage Places Conservation

Description

This program aims to protect and conserve the natural and cultural resources of heritage places managed by Parks Canada and to fulfill responsibilities assigned to Parks Canada under federal legislation. Protection and conservation activities in a national urban park, national parks, national marine conservation areas, heritage canals and Parks Canada administered national historic sites ensure that these heritage places are maintained and used in ways that leave them unimpaired for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending
(authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
157,590,219 171,042,215 158,337,176 137,267,951 (33,774,264)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
908 875 (33)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Management actions result in improvements to ecological integrity indicators in national parks. Number of national parks with 1 improved ecological integrity indicator. 20 by March 2015. 20
The state of cultural resources of national significance in national historic sites is maintained or improved. Number of national historic sites whose state of cultural resources of national significance have been maintained or improved. 55 by March 2015. 55*
*For purposes of reporting on this target, national historic sites maintaining or improving more than one type of cultural resource of national significance (i.e. building, historical object or archeological site) were only counted once.
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Improving Ecological Integrity

The Conservation and Restoration Program (previously known as Action on the Ground) continued in 2014-15, investing in a diverse range of priority ecological restoration projects across the Agency. Investments have resulted in important improvements to ecological integrity indicators, and by March 2015, Parks Canada had reached the set target of 20 national parks with at least one improved ecological integrity indicator.

Improvements in ecological integrity indicators have been achieved by improving the condition (e.g. fair to good) or trend (e.g. declining to stable) of the indicator or by meeting all active management targets that are linked to an indicator (as long as the indicator and trend has not declined).

Projects under the Conservation and Restoration Program support the improvement of impaired ecosystems, and the protection and recovery of species at risk while fostering an appreciation for nature among Canadians. Progress in restoring ecological integrity has occurred in a wide variety of ecosystems by addressing a range of issues: terrestrial and aquatic connectivity, re-establishment of natural fire cycles and native plant communities, reduction of invasive species and hyper-abundant populations, and the reintroduction of species at risk.

Improving condition of cultural resources of national significance

In 2014-15, Parks Canada met its target of maintaining or improving the state of cultural resources of national significance at 55 national historic sites by March 2015.

Conservation work was completed on three targeted buildings (one at Point Clark Lighthouse National Historic Site and two at Fort Henry National Historic Site) resulting in their overall asset condition moving from poor to fair or good. Work to improve the condition of historical objects from poor to fair or good was also undertaken at 49 national historic sites. As a result, 89% of all objects for which we have a condition rating are currently reported to be in fair or good condition. Additionally, various monitoring strategies were employed and mitigation work carried out to minimize and reduce known threats to archaeological sites at six national historic sites.

Variances in 1.2 – Heritage Places Conservation

Actual spending for this program is $33.8 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to delays in the development of Rouge National Urban Park as well as delays in projects associated with the Agency’s Conservation and Restoration Program and the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan Program.

Sub-Program 1.2.1: National Park Conservation

Description

This program aims to maintain or restore ecological integrity in national parks through protection, conservation, restoration or mitigation activities, as mandated under the Canada National Parks Act. To implement this program, Parks Canada carries out applied science, monitoring and reporting, ecological restoration, species recovery, environmental assessment, fire management and compliance activities. Some of these activities are done in collaboration with the general public, stakeholders, partners, local and Aboriginal communities. This program also includes fulfilling legal responsibilities assigned to Parks Canada by the Species at Risk Act and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
106,201,404 96,757,400 (9,444,004)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
638 661 23


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
National park conservation is improved. Percentage of active management targets to improve ecological integrity that are met. 80% by March 2015. 56%
Number of action plans for national parks with 5 or more species at risk. Completed action plans for all national parks with 5 or more species at risk by March 2016. In progress – to be reported on in 2015-16
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

As of March 2015, projects under the Conservation and Restoration Program had led to the achievement of 56% of active management targets to enhance ecological integrity or the status of priority species at risk, thereby significantly improving national park conservation. While falling short of the 80% target, important conservation gains were made through projects that have not yet completely reached their targets. Parks Canada's performance to date is due to several factors including: the experimental nature of ecological restoration, project delays for 5% of the targets, and the unpredictable response of ecosystems following management intervention. Parks Canada is working on refining active management targets and improving project success.

In 2014-15, Parks Canada continued to demonstrate leadership through the re-introduction of fire in ecosystems by conducting 23 prescribed fires across the country, accounting for 5,448 hectares in 12 national parks in support of the maintenance or restoration of ecological integrity in those national parks. In addition, Parks Canada continued to ensure public safety within national parks and other heritage places by successfully managing 85 wildfires, covering over 292,000 hectares while collaborating with partner agencies and the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre.

Through the implementation of the Understanding Climate-Driven Ecological Change in Canada’s North Program, Parks Canada applied Inuit knowledge and advanced spatial modelling using remote sensing techniques to develop detailed ecological maps and predict how plants and animals may respond to climate change. Building on completed detailed mapping for seven northern national parks, maps for three additional national parks (Vuntut, Tuktut Nogait and Auyuittuq) were added to the program in 2014-15. The remaining two northern national parks (Sirmilik and Quttinirpaaq) will be completed in 2015–16.

In 2014-15, action planning for six of the seven national parks with five or more species at risk was either initiated or in progress. The site-based multi-species approach for action plans allows the Agency to prioritize conservation actions for the suite of species at risk found in Parks Canada’s heritage places. In addition, 16 major projects were funded in 2014-15 to support the implementation of species at risk recovery actions while enhancing the visitor experience in Parks Canada’s heritage places.

Variances in 1.2.1 – National Parks Conservation

Actual spending for this sub-program is $9.4 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is partially due to delays in projects associated with the Agency’s Conservation and Restoration Program and the Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan Program.

Sub-Program 1.2.2: National Urban Park Conservation

Description

This program aims to celebrate and protect the natural and cultural heritage of diverse landscapes at the national urban park as mandated under federal legislation. It includes conserving or enhancing the diversity of cultural resources and natural habitats, protecting or recovering species at risk, promoting agricultural heritage and sustainable farming practices and engaging people from local communities and across Canada in conservation. To implement this program, Parks Canada carries out applied science, monitoring and reporting, ecological restoration, cultural resource preservation, restoration and rehabilitation, species recovery, environmental assessment, fire management, archaeology and compliance activities, most of which is done in collaboration with the general public, stakeholders, partners, local and Aboriginal communities. This program also includes fulfilling legal responsibilities assigned to Parks Canada by the Species at Risk Act and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
3,618,976 776,047 (2,842,929)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
7 7 0


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
National urban park conservation is improved. Completed monitoring and reporting plan. 1 by the year following establishment. In-progress
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada made progress towards the development of a monitoring and reporting plan for the Rouge National Urban Park by carrying out the following activities:

  • Initiated a review of the existing Toronto and Region Conservation Authority monitoring program for the current regional Rouge Park to help inform the design of Parks Canada’s monitoring and reporting plan for Rouge National Urban Park, including relevant ecosystem indicators and measures;
  • Developed models for the forest, wetland and freshwater ecosystems in the park to assist in understanding key ecosystem components, processes, threats and stressors; and
  • Developed and tested monitoring measures for the forest, wetland and freshwater indicators, and worked on developing an ecosystem indicator for farmland in collaboration with partners and stakeholders, including the farming community.

Collaboration with volunteers, citizen scientists, technical specialists and First Nations has been integral to the development of the park monitoring and reporting program to date.

With the coming into force of the Rouge National Urban Park Act on May 15, 2015, the monitoring and reporting plan is scheduled for completion by May 2016.

Variances in 1.2.2 – National Urban Park Conservation

Actual spending for this sub-program is $2.8 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to delays in the development of Rouge National Urban Park.

Sub-Program 1.2.3: National Marine Area Conservation

Description

This program aims to ensure that national marine conservation areas are managed and used in an ecologically sustainable manner that meets the needs of present and future generations without compromising the structure and function of the ecosystems with which they are associated as mandated under the Canada National Marine Conservation Areas Act. This program also aims to fulfill Parks Canada’s responsibilities under the Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park Act, the Species at Risk Act, and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The management of marine conservation areas involves agencies other than Parks Canada that have legislated mandates with regard to activities such as fishing and marine navigation, activities that are subject to shared understandings that respect the principle of ecologically sustainable use. To implement this program, Parks Canada carries out science, monitoring and reporting, ecological restoration, species recovery, environmental assessment and compliance activities. Some of these activities are undertaken in collaboration with the general public, stakeholders, partners, local and Aboriginal communities. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
1,890,924 3,153,031 1,262,107


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
14 24 10


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
National marine area conservation is maintained. Number of completed monitoring and reporting plans. 4 by March 2016*. In progress – to be reported on in 2015-16
*Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park, Fathom Five National Marine Park, Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area, Gwaii Haanas National Marine Conservation Area Reserve and Haida Heritage Site.
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Parks Canada continues to advance towards achieving its March 2016 target. In 2014-15, a cross-functional task team was assembled to contribute to clarifying requirements for monitoring and reporting in national marine conservation areas. The resulting national monitoring framework (i.e., suite of national indicators and monitoring guidance) will be approved in 2015. The four operating national marine conservation areas have been working to set the foundation for their monitoring programs through designing methodology and collecting data while continuing to undertake projects to enhance understanding and management of marine ecosystems in such areas as the use of marine resources and aquatic species at risk. This work will contribute to each national marine conservation area finalizing an individual monitoring and reporting plan based on the approved monitoring framework.

Variances in 1.2.3 – National Marine Area Conservation

The Agency has been implementing changes to improve its budget planning and reporting by program. The variance is mainly due to these improvements.

Sub-Program 1.2.4: National Historic Site Conservation

Description

This program aims to ensure the commemorative integrity of national historic sites, including heritage canals on Parks Canada lands. This program includes the inventorying and evaluation of resources including buildings and engineering works, archaeological sites, landscapes, and historical and archaeological objects to determine heritage value. The heritage value of resources is considered in all decisions affecting cultural resources, including priority setting, impact assessment, public activities and monitoring. Key activities reflect the management regime for Parks Canada administered national historic sites such as the preparation of commemorative integrity statements for national historic sites, evaluations of their state, compliance activities and conservation actions to improve the condition of cultural resources. This program also includes fulfilling legal responsibilities assigned to Parks Canada by the Species at Risk Act and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
53,085,552 32,268,938 (20,816,614)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
229 175 (54)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
The condition of cultural resources of national significance administered by Parks Canada is maintained or improved. Number of buildings rated as poor is improved. 3 by March 2015. 3
Percentage of historical objects that are in fair or good condition. 90% by March 2015. 89%
Number of objects whose condition have been reassessed. 5,000 by March 2015. 4,171
Number of archaeological sites where threats have been assessed and reduced. 6 by March 2015. 6
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada met or mostly met its performance targets for National Historic Sites Conservation.

  • Three buildings previously rated in poor condition were improved to fair or good. These included: Point Clark Lighthouse, and the Storekeeper’s House and Stockade Ordnance Building No. 7 at Fort Henry National Historic Site. Significant heritage conservation work was undertaken on each of these buildings, and, as a result, the overall asset condition for Point Clark Lighthouse and the Storekeeper’s House improved to good condition, and the overall asset condition for Building No. 7 improved to fair condition.
  • Eighty-nine percent (23,443 of 26,451) of all objects with a known condition rating are currently reported to be in fair or good condition.
  • The condition of 4,171 historical objects of national significance associated with 49 national historic sites administered by the Agency was reassessed from unknown to good, fair or poor. Following the discovery of the HMS Erebus in September 2014, Parks Canada shifted resources to assess and conserve objects recovered from the wreck, and as a result, fell short in reaching the 5,000 target.
  • Various strategies including monitoring, remote sensing, excavation and recording were employed to address and reduce threats to archaeological sites at six national historic sites: Rocky Mountain House, Chilkoot Trail, Fortifications of Québec, Prince of Wales Fort, Fort Mississauga and Fort Henry.

During this reporting period, a streamlined process for assessing the state of commemorative integrity in national historic sites, introduced to be consistent with Parks Canada’s renewed Cultural Resource Management Policy, was implemented and pilot-tested at three sites: York Factory, Dawson Historical Complex and S.S. Keno. As well, significant progress was made towards finalizing Agency-wide direction for identifying cultural resources in national historic sites and assessing the impacts of interventions on them.

Discovery of the HMS Erebus

In September 2014 Parks Canada’s Underwater Archaeology team succeeded in locating the wreck of HMS Erebus, Sir John Franklin’s flagship, last seen by European eyes in 1845. Aided by Inuit knowledge, six seasons of dedicated search efforts involving federal and private partners were rewarded by this discovery of international significance. In April 2015 the Agency established The Wrecks of HMS Erebus and HMS Terror National Historic Site of Canada in Nunavut.

Variances in 1.2.4 – National Historic Site Conservation

Actual spending for this sub-program is $20.8 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to a reallocation of planned spending, and to changes the Agency has been implementing to improve its budget planning and reporting by program.

Sub-Program 1.2.5: Other Heritage Places Conservation

Description

This program aims to provide encouragement and support to other owners of national historic sites not administered by Parks Canada, and to provide conservation advice to other protected heritage areas (Federal Heritage Buildings, Heritage Railway Stations, Gravesites of Canadian Prime Ministers, and Canadian Heritage Rivers). Parks Canada lends its conservation expertise and contributes to ensuring that global heritage is protected and that Canada’s significant examples of national or international natural and cultural heritage are safeguarded for current and future generations. Parks Canada’s involvement in World Heritage is governed by an international convention to which Canada is a signatory. This program provides partial funding through the National Historic Sites of Canada Cost-Sharing Program in the form of contributions to national historic sites not administered by Parks Canada. A grant is also provided to the International Peace Garden.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
6,245,359 4,312,535 (1,932,824)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
20 8 (12)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Parks Canada programs support the conservation of cultural resources at historic places administered by others. Percentage of cost-sharing agreements completed that contribute to the conservation of significant cultural resources. 100% by March 2015. 100%
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

An important means of encouraging and supporting the conservation of cultural resources of national significance that are not administered by the federal government is through Parks Canada’s National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program.

In 2014-15, Parks Canada entered into contribution agreements with 13 National Historic Sites of Canada to contribute to the conservation of these important Canadian cultural resources. All of the agreements (100%) were successfully completed. These projects were selected based in part on the level of threat to the nationally significant resources. All work under the agreements was carried out in accordance with the Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada, thus ensuring the commemorative integrity of the sites.

Variances in 1.2.5 – Other Heritage Places Conservation

The actual spending of $4.3 million represents 3% of the total spending under Heritage Places Conservation and is consistent with previous years. The Agency has been implementing changes to improve its budget planning and reporting by program. The variance is mainly due to these improvements.

Program 1.3: Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

Description

This program aims to nurture a sense of pride in and support for Parks Canada administered places by increasing Canadians’ awareness, appreciation of their value and the various ways to experience them. This is achieved through relevant and effective heritage places promotion initiatives delivered to Canadians, reaching them in their daily lives. Some of these promotion activities are done in collaboration with stakeholders and partners to reach and engage more Canadians.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending (authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
39,448,240 42,091,031 45,825,382 42,872,689 781,658


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
339 355 16


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Canadians support the protection and presentation of places administered by Parks Canada. Percentage of Canadians that support the protection and presentation of places administered by Parks Canada. 80% by March 2018. To be reported on in 2018
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Parks Canada revised its approach for measuring public support in 2014. The Agency will be in a position to report on this target in 2018.

To foster support for Canada’s heritage places, Parks Canada undertook a number of activities in 2014-15, many with partners, to connect with Canadians in their communities, such as:

  • Featured Parks Canada heritage places in the documentary series “Canada plus grand que nature” and the television and multimedia productions “Ma caravane au Canada” and “Le rêve de Champlain” to broaden its reach with francophone audiences;
  • Brought the discovery and story of the HMS Erebus to millions of Canadians through print, broadcast and social media. One out of two adult Canadians heard, read or saw something about the discovery in Fall 2014. Abroad, the story was carried by 60 countries in more than 33 languages;
  • Participated in prominent urban festivals and venues in Toronto, including the Toronto Zoo, International Pride 2014 Celebrations, Festival of India, CHIN Multicultural Festival, International Dragon Boat Festival and Redpath Toronto Harbourfront Festival, connecting with over 70,000 individuals; and
  • Increased the number of contacts made through outreach activities at urban events and partner venues over the previous year by more than 35,000 in Vancouver, and by more than 12,000 in Montreal.

Parks Canada continues to appreciate and recognize that it is the cumulative and long-term impact of the Agency’s public presence and interactions with Canadians that are critical to achieving and maintaining Canadians’ support of heritage places. The Agency recognizes that it needs to challenge itself to evolve in how it reaches Canadians, looking for new and different ways to bring stories and inspiration of heritage places to Canadians.

Variances in 1.3 – Heritage Places Promotion and Public Support

There is no significant variance at the program level and the variance at the sub-program level is due to reallocation of planned spending within the program.

Sub-Program 1.3.1: Heritage Places Promotion

Description

Heritage places promotion aims to help Canadians become aware of the places Parks Canada administers, their natural and historical heritage, and the work carried out to protect and present them. Targeted initiatives are responsive and relevant to audiences' needs and interests and are informed by social science research. A wide range of interactive and learning experiences including music, art and film initiatives are offered at venues such as festivals, sporting events, museums, zoos and aquariums in major urban areas. The reach and relevance of these initiatives are enhanced through collaboration with stakeholders and partners and by maximizing positive coverage through broadcast news, mass, specialized and social media. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
30,305,542 28,717,727 (1,587,815)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
247 255 8


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Canadians appreciate the places administered by Parks Canada. Percentage of Canadians that appreciate the places administered by Parks Canada. 80% by March 2018. To be reported on in 2018
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Parks Canada is revising its approach for measuring appreciation and will be in a position to report on this target in 2018.

Engaging Canadians to appreciate Parks Canada’s heritage places requires a proactive and constant presence involving a mix of platforms, content, venues, and partners. Parks Canada continued to undertake proactive and targeted outreach initiatives in 2014-15, such as:

  • Partnering with Google Street View to publish virtual tour content within Google Maps for over 50 Parks Canada locations including four northern national parks;
  • Increased its media coverage by successfully pitching 450 stories and holding 30 press conferences;
  • Published more than 40 new videos on Parks Canada’s social media channels, gathering more than 575,000 views;
  • Special feature articles in magazines (e.g., Heritage, MacLean’s, Canadian Geographic, Diver, Archaeology, Canadian Living, Canadian Wildlife) and newspapers (e.g., Globe and Mail);
  • Content for the Learn-to-Camp initiative made available in Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Punjabi, Tagalog and Spanish;
  • Implemented new standards for social media through the Government of Canada’s Web Renewal Initiative have resulted in a 50% increase in the number of followers on Twitter and a 244% increase in the number of page likes on Facebook; and
  • Improved the Parks Canada website, making it more user-friendly for travelers.

Parks Canada undertook activities specifically targeting youth, a key target market, including:

  • Expanded Parks Canada’s Campus Club network to 16 clubs;
  • Provided opportunities for youth to participate in Students on Ice, a program that supports youth and Aboriginal leadership development, and fosters understanding and respect for the Arctic;
  • Produced five videos in conjunction with its Youth Ambassador Program for youth outreach, garnering over 40,000 views; and
  • Demonstrated leadership on connecting youth to nature with a global audience through the participation of Youth Ambassadors at the 2014 International Union for Conservation of Nature, World Parks Congress.
Variances in 1.3.1 – Heritage Places Promotion

The variance at the sub-program level is due to a reallocation of planned spending within the program.

Sub-Program 1.3.2: Partnering and Participation

Description

This program encourages the participation of partners and stakeholders and leads to new or expanded opportunities for Canadians to discover and develop a sense of connection to their protected heritage places. Partnering arrangements advance shared or complimentary goals and objectives, and result in a wide range of collaborative activities including program delivery, promotional campaigns, contests, scientific and academic research, learning tools and new products. Partners include private sector organizations as well as other government departments, NGO's, academic institutions, and Aboriginal peoples, who in a number of places co-manage national heritage places. Stakeholders engage with Parks Canada through a wide variety of activities such as the Minister’s Round Table, formal and informal consultation processes, and the national volunteer program. Stakeholders include individuals, groups and organizations that have an interest in Parks Canada and ensure that Canadians’ needs and priorities are clearly expressed and inform Parks Canada's actions and direction. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
11,785,489 14,154,962 2,369,473


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
92 100 8


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Stakeholders and partners are engaged in the protection and presentation of Parks Canada's administered places. Number of Parks Canada volunteers. 10% increase (8325 Parks Canada Volunteers) by March 2018. (1%)
Number of collaborative initiatives with five strategic corporate partners. Maintain or expand by March 2018. 5
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, 7,527 volunteers worked in 91 different Parks Canada locations. This represents a slight decrease (1%) from the baseline of 7,569. Despite this, the overall trend over the last four years has seen an increase in the number of volunteers ranging from 7,500 to as high as 8,300 in years of major celebrations (e.g. Parks Canada Centennial in 2011-12 and Louisbourg 300 celebrations in 2013-14). In working towards achieving its March 2018 target, the Agency has focused its efforts on providing support and tools to facilitate the implementation of volunteer activities in Parks Canada places across Canada. These included the development of online training sessions, staff handbooks, best practices and communication approaches with volunteer coordinators across the organization.

Parks Canada made progress on its performance target related to maintaining or expanding the number of collaborative initiatives with strategic partners. These relationships help strengthen support and grow further initiatives with current and new partners with whom Parks Canada hopes to collaborate. In 2014-15, the Agency:

  • partnered with the Royal Canadian Geographic Society to support the Franklin search and to promote educational material and publications on the expedition;
  • negotiated a three year partnership agreement with the Royal Ontario Museum to promote the history of the Franklin expedition and discovery of the HMS Erebus through its network of museum institutions;
  • negotiated a partnering agreement with the Canadian Wildlife Federation to contribute to the Great Canadian Camp-out Program and promote camping;
  • expanded the partnership with Google Street View to publish virtual tour content for over 50 Parks Canada locations, including four northern national parks; and
  • partnered with OwlKids to feature Parks Canada’s mascot, Parka, in Chirp and Pomme d’Api magazines and extend its reach to 300,000 youth.

Other collaborative initiatives undertaken by Parks Canada during the reporting period include:

  • collaborated for a second year with Air Canada to promote Canada’s Coolest School Trip which helped increase social media followers;
  • expanded the partnership with Mountain Equipment Coop to promote and equip the Learn to Camp Program at 13 national parks and seven historic sites; and
  • negotiated partnerships with academic institutions, museums and provincial institutions to do joint research and promotion on the history of the Lachine Canal leading up to Canada 150.

The Agency continues to recognize the important value and benefit of working with partners to bring the stories and experiences of its heritage places to millions of Canadians in new and exciting ways.

Variances in 1.3.2 - Partnering and Participation

The variance at the sub-program level is due to a reallocation of planned spending within the program.

Program 1.4: Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of personal connection to Canada’s national urban park, national parks, national historic sites administered by Parks Canada, national marine conservation areas, and heritage canals. This program includes a range of activities, services and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation, recreation, special events, merchandise, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities. The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending (authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
238,298,011 247,751,323 330,389,382 291,314,470 43,563,147


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
1,949 2,070 121


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Canadians and international visitors visit Parks Canada's administered places and visitors at surveyed locations feel a sense of connection to these places. Number of visits at Parks Canada administered places. 2% increase every year 5%*
Average percentage of visitors that consider the place is meaningful to them. 85% by March 2015. 80%**
Average percentage of visitors that are satisfied with their visit. 90% by March 2015. 95%**
Average percentage of visitors that are very satisfied with their visit. 50% by March 2015. 66%**
*Source: Parks Canada’s attendance statistics
**Source: Parks Canada’s Visitor Information Program, 2014 (visitor surveys administered at nine places)
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Visitation to Parks Canada’s heritage places increased by 5% in 2014-15 to 21.8 million exceeding its target by 3%. Parks Canada mostly met its performance target related to the percentage of visitors at surveyed locations who considered the place they visited meaningful to them. In terms of visitor satisfaction, the Agency exceeded it performance targets related to the percentage of visitors at surveyed locations who were satisfied or very satisfied with their visit.

The Agency continued its efforts to inspire Canadians to visit and connect with their heritage places in 2014-15 through the following initiatives:

  • Launched a national tourism promotional campaign in cinemas across Canada and on popular social media channels, reaching millions of Canadians ahead of the 2014 tourism season;
  • Offered programs, events and activities linked to the Government of Canada’s Road to 2017 initiative including the continuation of the War of 1812 On Tour programming and the commemoration of key anniversaries such as the First and Second World Wars, the Québec and Charlottetown Confederation Conferences, and the birth of Sir George-Étienne Cartier;
  • Continued to expand its diversified accommodation program with the installation of 114 new oTENTiks in 11 national parks and two heritage canals;
  • Expanded the Xplorers Program to 90 locations accommodating 187,000 participants;
  • Introduced Club Parka, a new program targeting preschool-aged children, in 19 locations;
  • Hosted 22 Learn-to-Camp events at seven national historic sites, 13 national parks and two off-site locations with over 1,800 participants;
  • Integrated information to cross-promote Parks Canada places into a wide variety of promotional media including visitor guides, program materials, and park and site web pages and local brochures; and
  • Implemented improvements to Parks Canada’s reservation service and on-line planning tools resulting in increases in reservations (16%) and information requests through the National Information Service (11%).

Overall, visitors enjoy and are satisfied with their visit, and have a meaningful connection with the places they visit. To maintain success, Parks Canada must continue to offer high quality programs and services that meet the needs of Canadians and international visitors, and make it easier for travellers to plan their trip to heritage places. Strategic promotion through national campaigns, proactive travel media, and working with partners continue to be invaluable for facilitating opportunities to engage Canadians and inspire visitation.

Variances in 1.4 – Visitor Experience

Actual spending for this program is $43.6 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to significant investments to improve the condition of the Agency’s visitor service and interpretation assets, and to provide enhanced services to Canadians.

Sub-Program 1.4.1: National Park Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of personal connection to Canada’s national parks. This program includes a range of activities, services, and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation (e.g., guided walks, presentations, exhibits, audio visual material, technology applications), recreation, special events, merchandise, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities (e.g., visitor reception centres, campgrounds, trails, park roads). The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
136,131,174 196,376,674 60,245,500


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
1,053 1,286 233


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Visitors at surveyed national parks learned from experience and active participation. Average percentage of visitors that consider that they learned about the natural heritage of the national park. 60% by March 2015. 75%
Visitors at surveyed national parks enjoyed their visits. Average percentage of visitors that enjoyed their visit. 90% by March 2015. 96%
Source: Parks Canada’s Visitor Information Program, 2014 (visitor surveys administered at Elk Island National Park, Fundy National Park, Mingan Archipelago National Park Reserve, Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and Pukaskwa National Park)
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada exceeded its performance targets related to learning and enjoyment. On average, 75% of visitors felt they learned about the heritage of the national park they were visiting while 96% of visitors enjoyed their visit. The Agency has consistently exceeded these targets over the last three years.

Parks Canada provides visitors with a mix of opportunities to discover, learn about, appreciate and enjoy the national park they are visiting. In 2014-15, the Agency implemented a broad range of local projects aimed at improving visitor satisfaction and the quality of experiences. Many park locations upgraded their camping offer (e.g. electrified campsites and upgraded water services) including Pacific Rim, Prince Edward Island, Kouchibouguac, Riding Mountain, Kejimkujik, Point Pelee and Banff national parks. As well, some locations added concession services, began selling Parks Canada official merchandise and renewed programming. The installation of oTENTiks continued with new units added at Fundy, Prince Edward Island, Terra Nova, Cape Breton Highlands, La Mauricie, Jasper, Forillon, Thousand Islands, Georgian Bay Islands, Kouchibouguac and Riding Mountain national parks.

In an effort to enhance visitor experience opportunities at northern national parks, Parks Canada developed northern iconic experiences for six locations including Torngat Mountains, Ivvavik, Tuktut Nogait, Quittinirpaaq, Nahanni and Wood Buffalo national parks. These experiences, lasting from a few days to a few weeks, will cater to specific markets, ranging from adventure tourism to cultural tourism. Many locations across the country added new guided experiences, including Kouchibouguac, Gros Morne, Point Pelee, Wapusk, Banff, Jasper, Kootenay and Yoho national parks. The Agency continues to work to ensure programs are well-designed and meet the needs of visitors.

Variances in 1.4.1 – National Park Visitor Experience

Actual spending for this sub-program is $60.2 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to significant investments to improve the condition of the Agency’s visitor service and interpretation assets, and to provide enhanced services to Canadians.

Sub-Program 1.4.2: National Urban Park Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of personal connection to Canada’s national urban park. This program includes a range of activities, services, and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation (e.g., guided walks, presentations, exhibits, audio visual material, technology tools), recreation, special events, merchandise, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities (e.g., visitor reception centres, campgrounds, trails, roads). The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
11,966,944 490,856 (11,476,088)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
15 4 (11)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Visitors surveyed at the national urban park learned from experience and active participation. Average percentage of visitors that consider that they learned about the natural and cultural heritage of the national urban park. 60% by March 2015. Not measurable in 2014-15
Visitors surveyed at the national urban park enjoyed their visit. Average percentage of visitors that enjoyed their visit. 90% by March 2015. Not measurable in 2014-15
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

Rouge National Urban Park was not yet established in 2014-15. Consequently, there are no survey results to report for this sub-program. Survey results are expected within two years following park establishment and the transfer of lands to Parks Canada.

The Agency did carry out a number of activities in the north end of the Park Study Area, however, to ready itself to take over management of the park following its establishment. These include:

  • Completed an inventory and assessment of existing assets;
  • Mapped and inventoried sensitive natural resource areas and potential archaeological sites;
  • Engaged local municipalities and stakeholders in various discussions on visitor experience, including connection of park trails to existing and planned external trail networks; and
  • Developed plans for interpretive programming, and reception and orientation facilities, in collaboration with First Nations, park volunteers, community residents, municipalities, the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, the Toronto Zoo and other stakeholders.
Variances in 1.4.2 – National Urban Park Visitor Experience

Actual spending for this sub-program is $11.5 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to the reprofile of funding for the development of Rouge National Urban Park to future years to better reflect implementation and development plans.

Sub-Program 1.4.3: National Marine Conservation Area Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of connection to Canada’s national marine conservation areas. This program includes a range of activities, services, and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation (e.g., presentations, exhibits, audio visual materials), recreation, special events, merchandise, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities (e.g., visitor reception centres, docks, day use areas). The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
2,323,098 3,261,569 938,471


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
17 18 1


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Visitors at surveyed national marine conservation areas enjoyed their visit. Average percentage of visitors that enjoyed their visit. 90% by March 2015 97%
Source: Parks Canada’s Visitor Information Program, 2014 (visitor surveys administered at Fathom Five National Marine Conservation Area)
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada exceeded its performance target for enjoyment. On average, 97% of visitors at surveyed national marine conservation areas enjoyed their visit.

Parks Canada provides visitors with a mix of opportunities to discover, learn about, appreciate and enjoy the national marine conservation area they are visiting. In 2014-15, the Agency implemented a broad range of local projects aimed at improving visitor satisfaction and the quality of experiences at national marine conservation areas. At Fathom Five National Marine Park, a pilot program, delivered through local dive shops, made it quicker and easier for divers to obtain their tags and the appropriate safety and conservation information. New dive moorings on three shipwrecks were installed to provide better dive site access and meet visitor needs. Several exhibits in the Visitor Centre were revamped and modernized, including a complete overhaul of the cliff ecology exhibit and the addition of a new touch screen exhibit featuring shipwreck exploration. The marine park also began offering the Xplorers Program and developed an underwater guide with a bathymetry map, 3-D shipwreck renderings, park information and interpretive stories.

Enhancements were made to the visitor experience offer at Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park. Capital improvements were made to the visitor facilities at the Marine Environment Discovery Centre and to the Saint-Fidèle reception area; playground equipment was added at the Cap de Bon-Désir Interpretation and Observation Centre; and new interpretation materials were developed in collaboration with Eco-Whale Alliance, an organization that promotes eco-responsible whale watching. The Agency continues to work to ensure programs are well-designed and meet the needs of visitors.

Sub-Program 1.4.4: National Historic Site Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of personal connection to national historic sites administered by Parks Canada. This program includes a range of activities, services, and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation (e.g., period animation, demonstrations, guided walks, exhibits, audio-visual material, technology applications), recreation, special events, merchandise, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities (e.g., visitor reception centres, washrooms, trails). The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
67,140,835 60,266,625 (6,874,210)


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
569 493 (76)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Visitors at surveyed national historic sites learned from experience and active participation. Average percentage of visitors that consider that they learned about the cultural heritage of the national historic site. 85% by March 2015. 93%
Visitors at surveyed national historic sites enjoyed their visits. Average percentage of visitors that enjoyed their visit. 90% by March 2015. 92%
Source: Parks Canada’s Visitor Information Program, 2014 (visitor surveys administered at Cave and Basin, Fort Lennox and Fortress of Louisbourg national historic sites)
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada exceeded its performance targets related to learning and enjoyment. On average, 93% of visitors felt they learned about the cultural heritage of the national historic site they were visiting, a 6% increase over the last three years. On average, 92% of visitors enjoyed their visit.

Parks Canada provides visitors with a mix of opportunities to discover, learn about, appreciate and enjoy the national historic site they are visiting. In 2014-15, the Agency implemented a broad range of local projects aimed at improving visitor satisfaction and the quality of experiences at national historic sites. Many sites expanded their visitor offer to include unique experiences that encompass fun and interactive learning activities for families and adventurers such as Fort George, Fortress of Louisbourg, Alexander Graham Bell, the Fortifications of Québec, Fort Walsh and Batoche national historic sites. As well, some sites added concession services, began selling Parks Canada official merchandise and renewed programming to continue to attract visitors.

Visitor infrastructure improvement projects were also completed at some sites, such as Batoche National Historic Site, and are underway at many other locations, including the Halifax Citadel, Province House, Green Gables and Fort Chambly national historic sites. A number of sites added concerts and special events to enhance their visitor offer. These included Fortress of Louisbourg, Signal Hill, Cape Spear, Fort Rodd Hill, Fort Langley, the Halifax Citadel, Cave and Basin, Lower Fort Garry and The Forks national historic sites. The Agency continues to work to ensure programs are well-designed and meet the needs of visitors.

Variances in 1.4.4 – National Historic Site Visitor Experience

Actual spending for this sub-program is $6.9 million lower than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to a reallocation of planned spending, and to changes the Agency has been implementing to improve its budget planning and reporting by program.

Sub-Program 1.4.5: Heritage Canal Visitor Experience

Description

This program fosters opportunities for Canadians and international visitors to discover, experience, enjoy and develop a sense of personal connection to Canada’s heritage canals. The nine heritage canals include the Trent-Severn Waterway and the Rideau, Lachine, Carillon, Chambly, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Saint-Ours, Sault Ste. Marie, and St. Peters canals. This program includes a range of activities, services, and products associated with pre-visit planning, the on-site visit, and post visit communications. It includes tourism marketing, trip planning information, reception, orientation, interpretation (e.g., exhibits, audio visual material), recreation, compliance and visitor safety services, and visitor facilities (e.g., visitor reception centres, locks). The program is supported by market and visitor analytics, trend analysis, and performance measurement. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
30,189,272 30,918,746 729,474


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
295 269 (26)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Boaters use heritage canals. Number of boats on heritage canals. 2% increase every year. (3%)
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014, 169,555 vessels passed through locks on heritage canals in Ontario and Quebec; 3% less than in 2013. The 2014 operation season saw below average temperatures coupled with high fuel costs, contributing to fewer active boaters.

In 2014-15, Parks Canada worked in partnership with communities and other levels of government to implement initiatives identified in the Rideau Canal Visitor Experience Concept, a framework of experience opportunities aimed at enhancing experiences for visitors along the corridor and the financial sustainability of the Rideau Canal World Heritage Site and its adjacent communities.

The development and promotion of products continued in an effort to help Canadians connect to the authentic natural and cultural experiences along heritage canals. A new 2-for-1 coupon for lockage was promoted extensively at Boat Shows, Cottage Associations and Marinas to encourage boaters to travel farther and more frequently on canals, where new products such as alternative accommodation (oTENTiks) have been installed and made available to both boaters and land-based visitors.

The Agency also launched a competitive Request for Proposals designed to increase the number of unique and water-based experiences on the Rideau Canal in the Nation’s Capital. Parks Canada is actively working to foster recreation, tourism and economic development in innovative ways that will contribute to local economies and ensure that Canada’s canal waterways meet their potential as vibrant and animated world class sites.

Program 1.5: Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management

Description

This program involves the management of infrastructure for Canadians and provides opportunities for socio-economic benefits to adjacent communities. It is related to the operation, maintenance and improvement of the Trans-Canada and provincially numbered highways within national parks and a national historic site; the water management of certain heritage canals; and, the provision of municipal services to certain national park townsites.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending (authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
93,460,532 102,503,020 156,530,074 136,302,253 33,799,233


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
246 293 47


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Condition of contemporary infrastructure in poor condition is improved. Percentage of assets in poor condition that have improved. 10% by March 2016. 27%
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada invested approximately $108.1 million to improve the condition of the Trans-Canada and provincially numbered highways, heritage canals and townsite infrastructure. Of the 234 contemporary assets rated as being in poor condition, 63 (27%) have been improved.

Parks Canada continued delivering a comprehensive inspection program and making targeted investments in the maintenance and rehabilitation of heritage canals and highway assets, including associated bridges and dams. Potable and wastewater systems in townsites were inspected as part of the Agency’s five year assessment cycle. The Agency made progress in the development of an asset management information system which will enhance the quality of asset information and facilitate the application of consistent asset management practices and data across the Agency.

Through these investments, heritage canal, highway and townsite infrastructure will be safer and more reliable with higher quality experiences for Canadians and visitors.

Variances in 1.5 – Heritage Canals, Highways and Townsites Management

Actual spending for this program is $33.8 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to increased investments to improve the condition of highways, bridges and dams located in national parks and along historic canals.

Sub-Program 1.5.1: Townsite Management

Description

This program involves the provision of municipal services and the management of related infrastructure to support residents and visitors in the five townsites of Field (Yoho National Park), Lake Louise (Banff National Park), Wasagaming (Riding Mountain National Park), Waskesiu (Prince Albert National Park), and Waterton (Waterton Lakes National Park). Municipal services include drinking water, sewage treatment, road maintenance, snow removal, and garbage pick-up and disposal. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
7,666,806 8,377,464 710,658


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
38 48 10


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Five townsites operated by Parks Canada receive municipal services according to government standards.[xxiv] Percentage of drinking water and sewage effluent samples that meet quality standards. 100% by March 2015. 100%
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Drinking Water

All Parks Canada townsites are required to adhere to the Parks Canada Potable Water Guidelines and Standards. These guidelines set the sampling and testing procedures for various sizes and types of Parks Canada potable water systems. In 2014-15, all five townsites met the potable water standards contained in these guidelines.

Sewage Effluent

Townsite wastewater treatment facilities are required to meet federal targets under the Wastewater Systems Effluent Regulations. In 2014-15, all five townsites met the applicable targets under the regulations.

Parks Canada continues to upgrade its municipal infrastructure to ensure levels of service are maintained. In 2014-15, the Agency invested $2.3 million in upgrades including the installation of new digital water meters in Field, the replacement of obsolete pumps in lift stations in Wasagaming, and preliminary design work for the remodelling of the septic receiving station in Lake Louise.

Sub-Program 1.5.2: Highway Management

Description

This program involves the management of the Trans-Canada and provincially numbered highways infrastructure within national parks and one national historic site. The operation, maintenance and improvement of these highways benefit Canadians and visitors to Parks Canada's heritage places and includes snow removal, inspections, repairs and replacement of highway surfaces, retaining walls, bridges and culverts. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
76,383,508 96,964,170 20,580,662


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
159 140 (19)


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Condition of critical assets on the Trans Canada and provincially numbered highways are at least in fair condition. Percentage of critical assets on the Trans Canada and provincially numbered highways that are at least in fair condition. 60% by March 2015. 56%
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

In 2014-15, Parks Canada continued its on-going inspection program on highways and associated bridges and made targeted infrastructure investments. The Agency invested $79.3 million in the maintenance and rehabilitation of highway assets, including ten bridges, to ensure continued safety. Parks Canada mostly met its target; of the 236 critical assets on the Trans Canada and provincially numbered highways, 132 (56%) are in at least fair or good condition.

Highway management practices were enhanced thereby enabling improved risk management and life-cycle costing of assets. New parameters were introduced into the highway costing model to enhance its capabilities, resulting in more accurate life cycle estimates. Information from road safety audits, in-service road reviews and incident reports were analysed to help identify high collision areas and to inform mitigation measures.

The Agency will continue to improve its asset management practices and focus its investments on critical through highway and associated assets to ensure Canadians continue to enjoy safe and reliable highways traversing national parks and historic sites.

Variances in 1.5.2 – Highway Management

Actual spending for this sub-program is $20.6 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to increased investments to improve the condition of highways and bridges located in national parks.

Sub-Program 1.5.3: Heritage Canal Management

Description

This program involves water management and the management of bridge and dam infrastructure at heritage canals for the benefit of Canadians. Water management encompasses managing the flow and level of water, flood control, and municipal water supplies at the following five heritage canals: Trent-Severn Waterway, the Rideau, Lachine, Chambly, and Saint-Ours canals. The management of heritage canal infrastructure includes activities such as the operation, maintenance and improvement of bridges and dams at all nine heritage canals. The General Class Contribution Program is used to provide contribution funding.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Actual Spending
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
18,452,706 30,960,619 12,507,913


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
49 105 56


Performance Results
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
Water levels that Parks Canada manages will meet the Agency’s legal and/or operational obligations. Water level gauge measurements. Within prescribed range every year. 88%
The condition of critical assets on canals is maintained. Percentage of dams and vehicular bridges in fair or good condition. 55% by March 2015. 58%
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Water Management

Parks Canada continues to meet its legal and operational obligations for water management. During the 2014 navigation season water levels were within range approximately 88% of the time.

The Agency regularly seeks to improve efficiencies in water level monitoring and information sharing. To this end, 12 new water level and four new snowpack automated monitoring stations were installed along the Rideau Canal and the Trent Severn Waterway in 2014 to assist in providing valuable information to relevant authorities.

Condition of Dams and Vehicular Bridges

In 2014-15, Parks Canada invested $26.5 million to maintain the condition of critical assets on heritage canals. Of the 402 dams and vehicular bridges, 58% are in fair or good condition; surpassing the target by 3%.

Through investments, Parks Canada continues to improve the condition of critical assets on heritage canals. Over the past two years the overall condition of Healey’s Falls Lock 15, Merrickville Swing Bridge, Chaffey’s Swing Bridge and Pont Lafleur were improved from poor to good. Repairs and construction on dams in Ontario and Quebec continue to improve condition and safety; including the ongoing replacement of Bolsover Dam.

Parks Canada has invested resources to complete 39 dam safety reviews on priority dams in Ontario and Quebec to be completed by December 31, 2015 as a commitment under the Dam Safety Program. As of March 31, 2015, 12 dam safety reviews were completed, 17 were in final review and all are on track for completion by the end of the year.

Variances in 1.5.3 – Heritage Canal Management

Actual spending for this sub-program is $12.5 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is due to increased investments to improve the condition of critical assets on heritage canals.

Internal Services

Description

Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. These groups are Management and Oversight Services, Communications Services, Legal Services, Human Resources Management Services, Financial Management Services, Information Management Services, Information Technology Services, Real Property Services, Materiel Services, Acquisition Services, and Travel and Other Administrative Services. Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not those provided to a specific program.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2014-15
Main Estimates
2014-15
Planned Spending
2014-15
Total Authorities
Available for Use
2014-15
Actual Spending (authorities used)
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
59,800,163 65,633,392 94,979,520 92,843,101 27,209,709


Human Resources (FTEs)
2014-15
Planned
2014-15
Actual
2014-15
Difference
(actual minus planned)
480 571 91
Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned
Management and Oversight Services

Asset Management

The Agency made progress towards the implementation of an asset management information system which will enhance the quality of asset information and facilitate the application of consistent asset management practices across the Agency. Configuration and testing of the different modules and functionality within the new system continued in 2014-15. The first of two phases of the new system is planned to be implemented during the fall 2015. This phase will include modules to manage and report on asset condition and deferred work.

Blueprint 2020

As part of the Government of Canada’s Blueprint 2020 initiative, Parks Canada continued the implementation of Innovation Labs: collaborative think tanks designed to provide opportunities for team members to contribute to improving the operations and the quality of the workplace. Three inaugural labs, addressing key issues identified in Parks Canada’s Blueprint 2020 consultations, including work-life balance, professional development and employee engagement with the Code of Values and Ethics, were completed. Two new labs, currently ongoing, are exploring ways to improve the use of both official languages in the workplace, as well as encourage positive working relationships with Aboriginal people.

Human Resources Management Services

In 2014-15, Parks Canada continued to implement the Government of Canada direction on human resources modernization. With regard to pay consolidation, a total of 667 pay accounts were successfully transferred to the Pay Centre in Miramichi, New Brunswick as planned with the remaining accounts scheduled to be transferred in December 2015. In preparation for the implementation of “Phoenix”, the new pay system, Parks Canada completed three series of integration testing.

As part of the implementation of a new human resources service delivery model, some staffing and classification processes were streamlined and automated. To enhance flexibilities, new policies including a Casual Worker Policy and a Deployment Policy were implemented allowing the Agency to meet operational and organizational requirements.

To improve Parks Canada’s workplace well-being, a new standard for the prevention of workplace violence was approved. A new policy, tools and training aimed at reducing incidences of occupational injuries and illnesses was also implemented. In addition, the Agency hosted a series of webinars on the topic of Parental Leave providing employees and managers with useful tips and advice in planning to take this leave and preparing for return to work.

Financial Management Services

In support of the Government of Canada direction on financial management transformation, Parks Canada assessed its processes for compliance with current financial management common business processes and began implementing an action plan to address gaps pertaining to account verification and certification. Governance and standards for financial information and data have been put in place, while work continues on implementing the Standard on Customer Record and the new Standard of Classification of Procurement Items. Efforts to streamline and automate routine processes are also underway. The Agency began assessing existing solutions used by other government departments in order to automate the procurement and payment processes from beginning to end within the Agency’s current financial system.

Parks Canada continued implementation of the Agency's action plan to strengthen internal controls. In 2014-15, the internal control monitoring of certain high risk financial processes was performed and will continue to be carried out progressively on other processes until 2016-17. Parks Canada has made progress in updating its Financial Management Framework with a view to ensuring a consistent financial management approach across the Agency based on key principles, expectations, responsibilities and requirements for the sound financial management of the Agency’s operations and investments, and to ensure probity, prudence and transparency of public resources.

Parks Canada enhanced its contracting and procurement framework to support the effective delivery of infrastructure investments announced by the Government of Canada in 2014.

Information Management Services

In accordance with the Treasury Board Directive on Recordkeeping, Parks Canada business units made good progress identifying and documenting Information Resources of Business Value (IRBV) and associated repositories that support and inform the Agency's core decision‐making processes and management of programs. Work also began on the development of additional information management controls and planning for the implementation of GCDOCS.

Variances in Internal Services

Actual spending for internal services is $27.2 million higher than the 2014-15 planned spending. This is mainly due to cost of maternity, severance as well as the one-year transition accounting treatment for implementing salary payment in arrears. The increase in FTEs is mostly attributed to supporting Government of Canada transformation initiatives and priorities as well as building capacity in readiness for and delivery of infrastructure investments announced by the Government of Canada in 2014.


Section III: Supplementary Information

Financial Statements Highlights

Parks Canada Agency's unaudited financial statements are prepared in accordance with the Government’s accounting policies, which are based on Canadian Public Sector Accounting Standards (accrual accounting principles) and, therefore, are different from appropriation-based reporting, which is reflected in Sections I and II of this report. Sections I and II are prepared on a modified cash basis rather than an accrual basis. A reconciliation between the parliamentary appropriations used (modified cash basis) and the net cost of operations (accrual basis) is set out in note 17 of the financial statements.

Condensed Statement of Operations (unaudited)
For the Year Ended March 31, 2015
(dollars)
Financial Information 2014-15
Planned Results
2014-15
Actual
2013–14
Actual
Difference
(2014-15 actual minus 2014-15 planned)
Difference
(2014-15 actual minus 2013–14 actual)
Total expenses 662,112,946 668,472,654 665,038,930 6,359,708 3,433,724
Total revenues 118,435,282 125,957,185 117,822,385 7,521,903 8,134,800
Net cost of operations before government funding and transfers 543,677,664 542,515,469 547,216,545 (1,162,195) (4,701,076)
Actual Year over Year

The increase in expenses of $3.4 million ($668.5 million in 2014-15; $665.1 million in 2013-14) is mainly due to staffing and higher operating costs to respond to the greater number of park visitors and a more active wildfire season. It is offset by a decrease in urgent repairs following exceptional flooding in 2013-14 and a shift in spending towards capital related projects in 2014-15.

The increase in revenue of $8.1 million ($125.9 million in 2014-15; $117.8 million in 2013-14) is mainly due to the greater number of park visitors and to an increase in rental and concession revenues.

Condensed Statement of Financial Position (unaudited)
As at March 31, 2015
(dollars)
Financial Information 2014-15 2013–14 Difference
(2014-15 minus 2013–14)
Total net liabilities 150,572,320 136,381,363 14,190,957
Total net financial assets 112,288,791 98,574,318 13,714,473
Net debt 38,283,529 37,807,045 476,484
Total non-financial assets* 1,950,716,467 1,867,067,900 83,648,567
Net financial position 1,912,432,938 1,829,260,855 83,172,083
*"Non-Financial Assets" are mainly composed of tangible capital assets which are recorded at thei acquisition cost. The book value does not reflect the current replacement value.

The net debt is calculated as the difference between total net liabilities and total net financial assets, and it represents liabilities for which the Agency will require future appropriations. Parks Canada Agency’s net debt increased by $0.5 million and is mainly due to the following variances:

  • Increases in environmental liabilities of $3.4 million ($24.2 million in 2014-15; $20.8 million in 2013-14) as a result of the re-evaluation of multiple sites as well as new sites;
  • Decreases in employee future benefits of $2.2 million ($11.4 million in 2014-15; $13.6 million in 2013-14) as a result of severance payments made during the year; and
  • Decreases in lease obligations for tangible capital assets of $0.3 million ($3.5 million in 2014-15; $3.8 million in 2013-14) as a result of lease payments made during the year.

The net financial position is calculated as the difference between net debt and total non-financial assets, and it consists mainly of tangible capital assets of $1,939.8 million. The increase of $83.2 million ($1,912.4 million in 2014-15; $1,829.2 million in 2013-14) is mainly attributable to an increase in investments toward tangible capital assets.

Financial Statements

To view the complete set of the Agency's unaudited financial statements, please refer to the endnotes for their location on the Parks Canada Agency website.[xxv]

Supplementary Information Tables

The supplementary information tables listed in the 2014-15 Departmental Performance Report are available on the Parks Canada’s website.[xxvi]

Tax Expenditures and Evaluations

The tax system can be used to achieve public policy objectives through the application of special measures such as low tax rates, exemptions, deductions, deferrals and credits. The Department of Finance Canada publishes cost estimates and projections for these measures annually in the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations[xxvii] publication. The tax measures presented in the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations publication are the responsibility of the Minister of Finance.


Section IV: Organizational Contact Information

Parks Canada National Office:

30 Victoria Street
Gatineau, Quebec
Canada
J8X 0B3

General Inquiries:

888-773-8888

General Inquiries (International):

819-420-9486

Teletypewriter (TTY):

866-787-6221


Appendix: Definitions

appropriation (crédit): Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

budgetary expenditures (dépenses budgétaires): Includes operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.

Departmental Performance Report (rapport ministériel sur le rendement): Reports on an appropriated organization’s actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Report on Plans and Priorities. These reports are tabled in Parliament in the fall.

full-time equivalent (équivalent temps plein): Is a measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person-year charge against a departmental budget. Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.

Government of Canada outcomes (résultats du gouvernement du Canada): A set of 16 high-level objectives defined for the government as a whole, grouped in four spending areas: economic affairs, social affairs, international affairs and government affairs.

Management, Resources and Results Structure (Structure de la gestion, des ressources et des résultats): A comprehensive framework that consists of an organization’s inventory of programs, resources, results, performance indicators and governance information. Programs and results are depicted in their hierarchical relationship to each other and to the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute. The Management, Resources and Results Structure is developed from the Program Alignment Architecture.

non-budgetary expenditures (dépenses non budgétaires): Includes net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.

performance (rendement): What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve and how well lessons learned have been identified.

performance indicator (indicateur de rendement): A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.

performance reporting (production de rapports sur le rendement): The process of communicating evidence-based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision making, accountability and transparency.

planned spending (dépenses prévues): For Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPPs) and Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs), planned spending refers to those amounts that receive Treasury Board approval by February 1. Therefore, planned spending may include amounts incremental to planned expenditures presented in the Main Estimates.

A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their RPPs and DPRs.

plan (plan): The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.

priorities (priorité): Plans or projects that an organization has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired Strategic Outcome(s).

program (programme): A group of related resource inputs and activities that are managed to meet specific needs and to achieve intended results and that are treated as a budgetary unit.

Program Alignment Architecture (architecture d’alignement des programmes): A structured inventory of an organization’s programs depicting the hierarchical relationship between programs and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.

Report on Plans and Priorities (rapport sur les plans et les priorités): Provides information on the plans and expected performance of appropriated organizations over a three-year period. These reports are tabled in Parliament each spring.

result (résultat): An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization’s influence.

statutory expenditures (dépenses législatives): Expenditures that Parliament has approved through legislation other than appropriation acts. The legislation sets out the purpose of the expenditures and the terms and conditions under which they may be made.

Strategic Outcome (résultat stratégique): A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization’s mandate, vision and core functions.

sunset program (programme temporisé): A time-limited program that does not have an ongoing funding and policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made whether to continue the program. In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration.

target (cible): A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.

voted expenditures (dépenses votées): Expenditures that Parliament approves annually through an Appropriation Act. The Vote wording becomes the governing conditions under which these expenditures may be made.

whole-of-government framework (cadre pangouvernemental): Maps the financial contributions of federal organizations receiving appropriations by aligning their Programs to a set of 16 government-wide, high-level outcome areas, grouped under four spending areas.

Endnotes

[i] Parks Canada Agency Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/P-0.4/

[ii]. Canada National Parks Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/N-14.01/

[iii]. Rouge National Urban Park Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/annualstatutes/2015_10/page-1.html

[iv]. Historic Sites and Monuments Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/H-4/index.html

[v]. Canada National Marine Conservation Areas Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/C-7.3/index.html

[vi]. Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/S-1.3/index.html

[vii]. Historic Canal Regulations pursuant to the Department of Transport Act,
http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/regulations/SOR-93-220/index.html

[viii]. Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/H-3.5/index.html

[ix]. Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/H-3.4/

[x]. Species at Risk Act,
http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/S-15.3/index.html

[xi]. Definition of Ecological Integrity, Definition of Commemorative Integrity

[xii]. The System of National Parks of Canada

[xiii]. National Historic Sites of Canada administered by Parks Canada

[xiv]. The System of National Marine Conservation Areas of Canada

[xv]. Parks Canada website

[xvi]. The Parks Canada Xplorers Program is designed to engage children (6 to 11 years old) visiting with their family in fun age-appropriate activities that allow them to discover the significance of Parks Canada’s heritage places.

[xvii]. Club Parka is a precursor to Xplorers Program, and is comprised of a series of activities aimed at preschool aged children that encourages them to explore, discover, learn and have fun while visiting Parks Canada’s heritage places with their family.

[xviii]. Parks Canada Agency 2014-15 Report on Plans and Priorities

[xix]. Whole-of-government framework,
http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/ppg-cpr/frame-cadre-eng.aspx

[xx]. Public Accounts of Canada 2015,
http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/recgen/cpc-pac/index-eng.html

[xxi]. Public Works and Government Services Canada website,
http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/

[xxii]. The objective of the General Class Contribution Program is to assist recipients in conducting activities and delivering projects that will support the Agency in fulfilling its mandate to preserve and protect nationally significant examples of Canada's natural and cultural heritage and present and foster public understanding, appreciation and enjoyment in ways that ensure the ecological and commemorative integrity of these places for present and future generations.

[xxiii]. Evaluation of Parks Canada’s National Park Establishment and Expansion Sub-Program,
http://www.pc.gc.ca/docs/pc/rpts/rve-par/88/index_e.asp

[xxiv]. Government standards for drinking water and sewage: Parks Canada Potable Water Standards and Guidelines, Guidelines for Effluent Quality and Wastewater Treatment at Federal Establishments (1976) and Wastewater Systems Effluent Regulations (2013).

[xxv]. Parks Canada Agency Unaudited Financial Statements

[xxvi]. Supplementary Information Tables

[xxvii]. Government of Canada Tax Expenditures,
http://www.fin.gc.ca/purl/taxexp-eng.asp