The government has re-introduced the Public Sector and MPP
Accountability and Transparency Act (formerly Bill 179 covered
in our March 2014 Client Alert), now Bill 8. Comprised of 11
Schedules, Bill 8 addresses various issues relating to public
accountability, and of particular note are the publication of
expense claims and an increase in the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman
to include school boards.
The new omnibus statute also includes a schedule which expands
the reach of the province's wage restraint measures. As with
its predecessors Bill 179, and Part II.I of the Broader Public
Sector Accountability Act currently in effect, Schedule 1 of
the new Act (the Broader Public Sector Compensation Act,
2014) prohibits "designated employers", including
school boards, from increasing the compensation paid to their
"Designated executives" is defined to include the
director of education or supervisory officer of a school board who
is entitled to receive or could potentially receive annual cash
compensation of $100,000.00 or more in a calendar year.
The new Act allows for an exception where the designated
executive is represented by an organization of two or more
employees for the purposes of collectively bargaining the terms and
conditions of their compensation.
The Management Board of Cabinet will be authorized to issue
directives requiring that designated employers provide information
with respect to their compensation plans, and may by regulation
establish "compensation frameworks" providing limits to
some or all components of compensation to designated executives,
including salary, benefits, perquisites, bonuses and incentives.
The specific content of the compensation framework is not included
in the Act, but the government may henceforth issue regulations and
directives as the means of giving effect to restraints.
Bill 8 also introduces increased enforcement mechanisms.
Designated employers which fail to comply with a directive to
produce information, pay its executives in accordance with a
compensation framework, or produce a report verifying compliance,
may be subject to an audit.
Moreover, any payment to a designated executive which does not
comply with the Act may be treated as an overpayment, which if not
repaid can be deducted from the employer and/or the executive from
future payments owing, or treated as a debt which may
recovered by any remedy or procedure available at law.
As noted above, Bill 8 also extends the reach of the Ombudsman
to include school boards. The role of the Ombudsman is set
out in the Ombudsman Act, which upon amendment will
provide that the Ombudsman may investigate any decision or
recommendation made or any act done or omitted in the course of the
administration of a school board.
A complaint triggering an investigation by the Ombudsman can be
made by an affected party, constituent or on the Ombudsman's
own initiative. But, the Ombudsman has discretion to refuse
to investigate a complaint. Following an investigation the
Ombudsman may make a report and recommendations for changes to be
made. If the Ombudsman is not satisfied with a school
board's response to the recommendations, his report may be
provided to the Premier.
We will continue to follow Bill 8 as it makes it way through the
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.
Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.
The recent decision of the Ontario Court of Appeal in BMW Financial Services Canada, a Division of BMW Canada Inc. v. McLean provides some useful insight into the relationship between automobile dealers and the financing arms of the manufacturers for whom those dealers are franchisees.
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).