Audit of Additions to Reserve Process - Follow-up Report Status Update as of September 30, 2013

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Action Plan Implementation Status Update Report to the Audit Committee - As of September 30, 2013

Lands and Economic Development, Regional Operations

Audit of Additions to Reserve Process
Approval Date: 04-26-2013
   Project Recommendations       Action Plan    Expected
   Completion Date   
   Program Response   
1. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) of Regional Operations (RO) should formalize and update regional governance practices and work with the Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development (LED) to develop a practice to share leading practices, establish common ATR processing steps and milestones, and report on the ATR process at a national level. Governance structures have been implemented for all ATR streamlining efforts and include the formalization of process, documents and templates. Governance structures have been developed with clearly outlined roles and responsibilities for land submissions that cover HQ, Regions, Corporate Secretariat, Regional Support Centres, CFO, LED and RO. Training for regional offices on ATR streamlining was completed on December 1, 2012. Regular reporting and monitoring occur through monthly calls with all LED directors and managers and the NATS system is used as a means for reporting on ATR submissions. Training and guidelines will be provided to all regions during 2013-14 for the roll out of the new ATR policy.

Regional Service Centres will share best practices. Regional LED Directors will be asked by RDGs (through EPMs and other tools) to provide regular updates on reporting and monitoring on ATRs, especially major program changes.

RO and LED will seek feedback from regions that are in the midst of implementing lands streamlining changes.
June 2013
(ATR Policy)
 
 
March 2014
(regional training on new ATR policy)
 
2. The Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development should continue updating the Lands Manual to better identify procedural steps. Revisions to Chapter 10 of the Land management manual are currently underway. This will include consultation with RDGs. Sept 2013 Status: Request to Close

Update/Rationale:
As of 30/09/2013:


Recommendations to revise the additions to reserve (ATR) policy (Chapter 10 of the Land Management Manual) were finalized in collaboration with the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) through the Joint Working Group. A revision of the ATR policy was completed and approved by the Deputy Minister and the Minister for posting online for the public comment period, which ended Oct. 31/13. Ongoing review or maintenance of the policy and any further revisions will be undertaken as part of regular operational business.

RDG’s were consulted in April of 2013 as part of Strategic Policy Committee and are briefed regularly as part of the LED Directors meetings.

AES: Implemented. Recommend to be Closed. Closed.
3. The Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development should review performance measures for continued relevance to allow for more useful performance reporting across all Regions and support Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of Regional Operations in establishing clear priorities for processing ATRs, including identifying possible risks to the achievement of those priorities. Performance measures will be reviewed by LED and RO to ensure relevance. A process for establishing clear priorities will be addressed in the new ATR policy. As required, LED officials will continue to work with RO Senior Management to identify obstacles, solutions and priorities. March 2014  
4. The Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development should work with the Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of Regional Operations to clarify the role of the Department of Justice, communicate the national service standard expectations to regional staff, and develop practices to increase the efficiency of DOJ’s participation in the ATR process DOJ will comply with existing service standards to ensure that they are being implemented and that any impediments are identified and dealt with in a timely manner. If service standards are not being met on a broad basis, LED, PSD, DOJ and RO will discuss and clearly identify the time delays and examine solutions and make recommendations as required. To ensure national consistency, LED and RO in consultation with DOJ, will develop a checklist that clarifies the role of DOJ and identifies specific issues that may require legal review. Sept 2013 Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 30/09/2013:


DOJ has indicated that service standards exist and that they are being met. Quarterly and ad hoc meetings take place between DOJ and program DG’s to address any service standard issues that may arise.

LED and DOJ have been working to develop new processes to support the land submission process (eg. French review of OiC’s) and have been working on analyzing regional checklists to create a national checklist. This work is part of the DOJ Stewardship Advisory Efficiencies working group.

AES: Implementation ongoing.
5. The Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of Regional Operations should work with the Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development to review alignment of staffing level requirements and capacity to the volume of activity and priorities. ADM LED and DG’s as needed to work with SADM RO and RDGs to identify opportunities for improved resource alignment March 2014  
6. The Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development should clarify user needs and revise the National ATR Tracking System (NATS) application to provide ATR file management support based on clearly defined processing milestones, data fields, and reporting requirements. The Assistant Deputy Minister of Lands and Economic Development should also delay First Nation’s access to NATS until the issues surrounding data completeness and accuracy are addressed. The need for additional enhancements will be examined. RO and LED will assess the timing and feasibility of opening NATS to First Nations. ADM LED will seek ongoing SADM RO input on NATS enhancements. Sept 2013 Status: Underway

Update/Rationale:
As of 30/09/2013:


LED and RO concluded that further enhancements were required before NATS could be accessed by the public.  A business analyst was hired in Q2 and is identifying the improvements required to enhance the system.

Regular updates on NATS have been provided to Regional Directors at the monthly LED call as well as at the LED Director face-to-face meeting in October 2013. 

AES: Implementation ongoing.
 
 
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