Tribal Council Funding Program Policy - Effective April 1, 2014 to March 31, 2016
- Effective Date
- Legal and Policy Authority
- Program Context
- Program Objectives and Expected Results
- Roles and Responsibilities
- Related Documents
- Annex A — Tribal Council Funding Program Guidelines
- Annex B — Interim Ongoing Major AANDC Program Breakdown for 2014-2015
- Annex C — Guidelines on Eligible Work Plan and Report Activities and Expenditures
1. Effective Date
This version of the Tribal Council Funding Program Policy applies to all Tribal Council Funding agreements that take effect on or after April 1, 2014. Previous policies, directives and procedures related to Tribal Council Funding continue to apply to Tribal Council Funding Agreements in effect up to March 31, 2014.
2. Legal and Policy Authority
Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development Act, R.S.C., 1985, c. I-6, s. 4
The Financial Administration Act, subsections 122 (1), 123 (1) and 124 (1).
3. Program Context
Tribal Council Funding provides core operational support to tribal councils to cover the administration and management costs associated with operating a regional service delivery organization.
This policy sets out clear roles and responsibilities for AANDC Headquarters, regional offices, tribal councils and First Nations regarding the purpose, execution, and management of the Tribal Council Funding Program.
The Tribal Council Funding Program Policy strengthens transparency and accountability and ensures that resources are directed toward the more efficient and effective delivery of programs, services and capacity development of a tribal council's member First Nations by using a consistent national approach to funding tribal councils.
4. Program Objectives and Expected Results
Tribal Council Funding supports the core operations of tribal councils to enable them to develop the capacity of their member First Nations, as well as provide aggregated program and service delivery as agreed to by their member First Nations.
The Tribal Council Funding Program is expected to support stable, transparent and accountable aggregate service delivery by Tribal Councils.
5. Roles and Responsibilities
|Governing Body||Roles and Responsibilities|
|AANDC Regional Offices||
|Member First Nations||
6. Related Documents
- Tribal Council Funding Program Guidelines (Appendix A)
- Aboriginal Recipient Funding Agreement
- Policy on Transfer Payments
- Interim Ongoing Major AANDC Program Breakdown for 2014-2015 (Appendix B)
- Guidelines on Eligible Work Plan and Report Activities and Expenditures (Appendix C)
Annex A — Tribal Council Funding Program Guidelines
1. Program History / Background
The Tribal Council Funding Program was created in the early 1980s and was designed to provide core operational support to tribal councils to oversee the administration and management costs associated with providing aggregated delivery of programs and services to member First Nations. Over the years, the institutional landscape and the needs of First Nations have changed. As First Nations evolve and new priorities are identified in terms of the delivery of programs and services, the Tribal Council Funding Program has also needed to evolve as a source of funding support to tribal councils.
The purpose of these program guidelines is to assist tribal councils and AANDC staff in implementing the Tribal Council FundingProgram Policy. The guidelines provide information on terms and conditions, and outline procedures to ensure that a consistent national approach to funding tribal councils is implemented.
2. Tribal Council Funding Program Objective
Tribal Council Funding Programsupports the core operations of tribal councils to enable them to develop the capacity of their member First Nations, as well as provide aggregated program and service delivery, as agreed to by their member First Nations.
For the purpose of the Policy and these Guidelines, the following definitions apply:
|Band Council:||Refers to the council of a band as defined in the Indian Act.|
|Block Contribution:||An option for providing transfer payments to Aboriginal recipients where the recipient has met certain assessment criteria and where a number of transfer payment programs that require a five or more year relationship with the recipient to achieve objectives can be funded under a single multi-year funding agreement. See Transfer Payments to Aboriginal Recipients (Appendix K).|
|Capacity Development of Member First Nations:||Refers to developing capacity in areas related to AANDC's mandate by using Tribal Council Funding to fund activities for the purpose of transferring knowledge and/or expertise, to assist a member First Nations in strengthening and maintaining their capabilities to set and achieve their own development objectives and progress over time.|
|The Department:||Means the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.|
|Inactive Member First Nation:||A member First Nation may be considered inactive within their tribal council under one or more of the following circumstances:
|Indian Government Support System:||The authoritative source for Tribal Council Funding Program data.|
|Major Programs:||Is a program or service which is funded by the Department, which is delivered by a tribal council on an ongoing basis, and is defined in the Chart of Accounts and by the Treasury Board Secretariat as a departmental Program Activity. The following are considered Major Programs:
*NOTE: For the purposes of the Tribal Council Funding Program, Land Management is considered in the same Major Program category as registration and membership.
|Member First Nation:||A First Nation that was a founding member of a tribal council or which sought membership in an existing tribal council and was accepted as a member, and which continues to be an active member of the tribal council. This First Nation is represented in the decision making process of their tribal council via representation on the Board of Directors, and actively engages in determining the roles, responsibilities and level of standards of service delivery and capacity development by the tribal council.
A member First Nation can be an Indian Act Band or a Self Governing First Nation. References to Member Band(s) and/or Affiliated First Nation/Band(s) identified in Tribal Council Funding Program information sources are now captured in this definition.
Tribal councils and First Nations can consult their Funding Agreement for rules on membership changes.
|Political Advocacy||Political advocacy means participating in activities such as lobbying, petitioning, rallying, etc., which are intended to influence the political decision making process of another government or governments. For further clarity, "political advocacy" does not refer to the representation by tribal councils and their employees in administrative decision-making processes.|
|Service Delivery:||Administration of a departmental service for which a tribal council can be funded by the Department. Tribal councils deliver services as designated by their member First Nations.|
|Service:||Activity funded by Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada.|
|Tier:||Describes the eligibility criteria at each level of the Tribal Council Funding Formula.|
|Tribal Council:||A grouping of First Nations with common interests who have voluntarily joined together to provide services to member First Nations. Tribal Council Funding provides support to cover the core administration and management costs associated with operating a regional administrative organization.|
|Unaffiliated First Nation:||A First Nation that is not a member of a tribal council.|
4. Eligibility for Tribal Council Funding
Please view the Tribal Council Funding Table for a list of tribal councils eligible for Tribal Council Funding. No new tribal councils will be approved for Tribal Council Funding.
Tribal councils are eligible for Tribal Council Funding when they have been clearly mandated by band councils or an equivalent executive body of member First Nations and agree to take on responsibility for the delivery of services and/ or capacity development of member First Nations as designated by their member First Nations.
The following list describes expenditures eligible for Tribal Council Funding:
- Salaries and wages;
- Office overhead and rent;
- Core administrative costs;
- Service delivery;
- Administrative costs associated with the delivery of departmentally funded Major Programs;
- Capacity development of member First Nations.
The following describes some types of ineligible expenditures but is not an exhaustive list.
- Tribal Council Funding cannot be used to supplement administrative costs of a service, project, or other initiative which already provides funding for administration costs; and
- Tribal Council Funding cannot be used for any costs related to supporting political advocacyFootnote 1 or political activities.
AANDC regional offices will work with tribal councils to ensure that only eligible expenditures are funded through the Tribal Council Funding Program.
5. Funding Process
Method for Determining the Amount of Funding
Funding levels will be determined by the value of eligible expenditures described in the tribal council work plan, and by the funding formula. The funding formula is calculated according to the following three factors:
- number of member First Nations;
- the total on-reserve population of the member First Nations; and
- the number of ongoing major AANDC programs delivered.
Please refer to Annex B Interim Ongoing Major AANDC Program Breakdown for 2014-2015 for more information on ongoing major AANDC programs.
Population information is based on the Indian Registry System and encompasses the following five categories found within the Indian Registry System:
- On-Reserve – Own Band
- On-Reserve – Other Band
- On Crown Land – Own Band
- On Crown Land – Other Band
- On Crown Land – No Band
Based on the tribal council's work plan, a tribal council will be eligible for Tribal Council Funding up to the amounts specified in each of the following three tiers:
Tier 1 – Up to a base of $200,000
Tier 1 tribal councils will receive up to $200,000 per year. A Tier 1 tribal council has the following characteristics:
- Serves an on-reserve population less than 2,000 and
- Serves 2 to 5 member First Nations and
- Delivers fewer than 3 ongoing major AANDC programs
Tier 2 – Up to a base of $200,000 + Incentive of $150,000 (total of $350,000)
Tier 2 tribal councils are eligible for up to $200,000 plus an incentive of up to an amount of $150,000 for a total of $350,000 per year. A Tier 2 tribal council has one or more of the following characteristics:
- Serves an on-reserve population of between 2,000 and 5,500; or
- Serves 6 to 8 member First Nations; or
- Delivers 3 to 5 ongoing major AANDC programs
Tier 3 – Up to a base of $200,000 + Incentive of $300,000 (total of $500,000)
Tier 3 tribal councils are eligible to receive up to $200,000 plus an incentive of up to $300,000 for a total of $500,000 per year. A Tier 3 tribal council has one or more of the following characteristics:
- Serves an on-reserve population over 5,500; or
- Serves 9 or more member First Nations; or
- Delivers 6 or more ongoing major AANDC programs
To be eligible for Tier 1, all three funding eligibility criteria must be met. To be eligible for Tier 2 or Tier 3, the tribal council must meet one or more of the funding eligibility criteria. It is not necessary to meet all three of a tier's eligibility criteria. For example, an on-reserve population of 5500 and over is enough to qualify for Tier 3 status even if the tribal council does not deliver any ongoing major AANDC programs. The tribal council would still be required to deliver on the terms of the agreement described in their work plan, which includes capacity development of its member First Nations and/or service delivery.
In September 2012, tribal councils were assessed and informed of their projected tier for 2014-2015. Where a tribal council has not made significant changes in delivering ongoing major AANDC programs, the tier communicated in 2012 will be used for 2014-2015 unless their population and/ or membership has changed their tier.
Tribal councils will be reassessed using information available to the Department as of December 31, 2013. For 2014-2015 the criteria used to reassess tribal councils that have altered their portfolio of ongoing major AANDC programs is described in Appendix B. In subsequent years, tribal councils will be reassessed each year on December 31st, block funded tribal councils which will be reassessed prior to the first year of a new funding agreement. There will be no mid-year tier funding adjustments for tribal councils who add Major Programs or who experience an increase in membership. These amendments will only be applied as of April 1 in the fiscal year following the changes.
Basis on Which Payments Will be Made
Contributions are paid based on the criteria established within the tiered funding structure. Payments will be generally made to tribal councils in two payments per year. At the discretion of the Department, the funding disbursement can be adjusted accordingly, with monthly payments and hold backs used as needed.
Block Contributions will be paid according to the block funding criteria established within their funding agreements.
Maximum Amount Payable
The amount payable to each tribal council is determined by the funding formula and will not exceed $500,000 annually.
In the case of recipients funded through the block contributions, the maximum amount payable may increase by no more than two percent per year or the increase in AANDC's reference level as appropriated by Parliament.
6. Application and Assessment Criteria
Tribal councils must complete an application for Tribal Council Funding annually, or in the first year of a Tribal Council Funding Block Contribution, and submit it to the appropriate AANDC regional office.
The application form contains data used in the formula to establish the funding level and therefore must be reviewed for comparison with departmental records and approved by the regional office. The application form is a document separate from the funding arrangement and is not incorporated into the text of the arrangement.
7. Work Plan
Tribal councils will be required to complete a work plan annually, or in the first year of a Tribal Council Funding Block Contribution, endorsed by each member First Nation as per the governance structure of the tribal council. Where that governance structure is determined through a tribal council electoral process, signatures from the elected members are sufficient. Member First Nations or representatives, as determined by the tribal council governance structure, are required to review and endorse their tribal council's annual work plan in a timely and efficient manner. The work plan will at a minimum identify planned Tribal Council Funding expenditures for core administrative costs, delivery of AANDC funded services and /or describe capacity development of member First Nations. For a work plan to be accepted, the tribal council must plan on delivering services or capacity development. Work plans consisting of only core administration costs will be rejected.
In the case of an inactive member First Nation
In the case of an inactive member First Nation, the affected tribal council may:
- Have the ability to submit a tribal council resolution in the place of the inactive member First Nation to the department, effectively giving notice that the member will be leaving the tribal council.
- In their work plan, the affected tribal council would have the ability to indicate their transition plan for ceasing services to the member First Nation in question. If no services are being provided, then this may also be stated.
- The work plan would need to be endorsed by each remaining active member First Nation, as per the governance structure of the tribal council at a minimum.
- Upon approval of the submitted work plan, the tribal council would continue to receive their current level of funding for the affected year (including the exiting member First Nation in their funding formula calculation) with the understanding that their funding levels would be adjusted if required in the following fiscal year.
If a tribal council submits an endorsed work plan that contains ineligible Tribal Council Funding activities and/or expenditures, the Regional Office will inform the tribal council of the issue. The tribal council may then choose to operate with the existing work plan, with their Tribal Council Funding reduced to the level of eligible expenditures. A tribal council may submit an amended, endorsed work plan at any time during the fiscal year. Amended plans submitted before September 30 in a given year may be used to fund a tribal council for the remainder of its approved full tier amount if it has not yet received it.
Tribal council must declare any and all prospective sources of funding for eligible activities described on the work plan inclusive of all federal, provincial or other government sources that is expected to be received.
The work plan must be readily accessible to member First Nations and should be posted on the tribal council's website where possible, or alternatively made available at the tribal council office or electronically via e-mail or social media.
8. Monitoring and Reporting
In order to continue to receive funding, the eligible tribal council will provide the Department with a program specific annual report which is endorsed by each member First Nation that includes information specified by the Department to verify compliance to the policy and guidelines. The annual report, in conjunction with the annual audited financial statement, will be used to demonstrate that a tribal council is in a position to continue to maintain the financial management of their AANDC funded activities.
Reported Tribal Council Funding activities that were not part of the endorsed tribal council's work plan will automatically be considered ineligible expenditures, in cases where the tribal council is unable to demonstrate endorsement of the activity by their member First Nations.
Endorsed activities will be reviewed for eligibility using the same criteria that was used for reviewing that year's work plan.
To avoid unexpected recoveries, Tribal Councils are encouraged to discuss activities not covered by an endorsed work plan with the AANDC Regional Office before using Tribal Council Funding to undertake them.
The report must be readily accessible to member First Nations and should be posted on the tribal council's website where possible, or alternatively made available at the tribal council office or electronically via e-mail or social media.
Tribal councils are encouraged to work with their regional AANDC office to ensure that accurate data is available to fill out the application, work plan, and report.
Annex B — Interim Ongoing Major AANDC Program Breakdown for 2014-2015
Application of these criteria will be used to assess tribal councils that have significantly altered the portfolio of ongoing major AANDC programs they manage since 2012, in addition to any that have moved tiers due to population and/or membership changes.
A tribal council that has its ongoing major AANDC programs assessed using these criteria will be considered to be managing an ongoing major AANDC program if their funding agreement includes at least one amount of funding from the lists below of activities within each ongoing major AANDC Program, or any one Block activity or any three non-Block activities in the case of Community Infrastructure or Capital and Housing. Only programs which are being delivered to the benefit of a tribal council's member First Nation may be counted as Major Programs. While tribal councils may choose to deliver programs and services to non-members, funding will not be provided for the delivery of these programs and services through the Tribal Council Funding program.
|Ongoing Major AANDC Program||Activities Within the Ongoing Major AANDC Program|
|Capital and Housing
(comprised of at least any 3 non-Block activities, or any one Block.)
(comprised of at least any 3 non-Block activities, or any 1 Block.)
|Lands, Registration and Membership||
Annex C — Guidelines on Eligible Work Plan and Report Activities and Expenditures
This annex provides guidance to AANDC regional offices for the review of Tribal Council Work Plans and Tribal Council Funding reporting. Only activities and expenditures undertaken, or to be undertaken, with Tribal Council Funding will be assessed using this document. Activities described in a tribal council's Work Plan or Report that are not related to Tribal Council Funding expenditures are provided by the tribal council for the information of their membership, and should not be assessed by AANDC using these criteria.
The lists in this document are not meant to be the full and final lists. It is likely that tribal councils will propose and report on activities and expenditures not directly addressed here. As these cases arrive, regions will seek guidance from HQ – Sector Operations Branch and the outcomes will be used to update this evergreen document.
For Core Administrative Costs and Delivery of AANDC Funded Services, these lists are guidance for working with tribal councils. Ultimately, a tribal council only needs to provide AANDC with a $ value in their work plan, but they can be made aware that this document will be used to assess their reporting and audited financial statements.
The Work Plan and Report requires details to be provided on each activity under Capacity Development of Member First Nations, and each activity needs to be reviewed to ensure eligibility.
Core Administrative Costs
- Tribal council Board of Directors costs
- Tribal council Incorporation related costs
- Salaries and Wages for tribal council executives and for staff engaged in activities included within Core Administrative Costs. This could also include pay for contracted individuals performing those tasks.
- Human Resources activities related to the tribal council's Core Administration.
- Tribal council office overhead and rent
- IM/IT purchases and maintenance for tribal council
- Core Administration Tribal council audit and accounting costs
- Tribal council internet and telephone costs
- Tribal council website and related online costs
- Travel and accommodation costs for tribal council staff
- Repayment of debt as specified in a tribal council's approved Management Action Plan, as per the Default Prevention Management Policy
- Legal fees related to tribal council administration and the management of AANDC related programs and services
Can not include:
- Activities related to political advocacy, as defined on page 6 of the Tribal Council Funding program policy.
- Transfers of Tribal Council Funding to member First Nations to support their Administration Costs.
- Salaries and Wages for employees of member First Nations
- Any costs to support the Core Administration of member First Nations, or any other organization other than the recipient of Tribal Council Funding
- Repayment of debt not related to an approved Management Action Plan, such as that related to a mortgage or discretionary loan
- Legal fees for individual band members for matters not related to the administration of the tribal council
Delivery of AANDC Funded Services
- Generally, any of the types of costs described under Core Administrative Costs, where they are required to support the Delivery of AANDC Funded Services managed by the tribal council.
Can not include:
- Any activities and related expenditures already funded by an AANDC Funded Service managed by the tribal council.
- Delivery costs related to AANDC funded projects, excluding Minor Capital projects.
- Costs related to the Delivery of AANDC Funded Services, where the Tribal Council does not manage that program.
Note: Tribal Council Funding may be used to develop member FN capacity to deliver a program not managed by the tribal council. See 'Capacity Development' below.
- Transfers of Tribal Council Funding to member First Nations to support their Service Delivery costs.
- Any activity related to Services not within AANDC's mandate.
Capacity Development of Member First Nations
- Generally any activity that will Develop the Capacity of a member First Nation to undertake activities within AANDC's mandate.
- Activities which were categorized as Advisory Services under the previous Policy, where those activities develop member First Nation capacity within AANDC's mandate.
- Activities which were categorized as Advisory Services under the previous Policy, where those activities develop the capacity of member First Nations to deliver another AANDC program but do not overlap with activities being funded by that program or another related program.
Can not include:
- Generally any activity that will Develop the Capacity of a member First Nation to undertake activities not within AANDC's mandate.
- Activities which were categorized as Advisory Services under the previous Policy, where those activities do not develop member First Nation capacity.
- Activities which were categorized as Advisory Services under the previous Policy, where those activities develop the capacity of member First Nations to deliver another AANDC program but duplicate activities being funded by that program or another related program.
- Generally any activity that is of a representative or advocacy nature, including any activity for which AANDC provides ongoing or project funding to Aboriginal Representative Organizations.
- Transfers of Tribal Council Funding to member First Nations to support their Capacity Development costs.
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