Memorandum of Understanding

between
The Attorney General of Ontario
(hereinafter called the "Minister")
and
The Executive Chair of Tribunals Ontario
(hereinafter called the "Executive Chair")


The parties to this Memorandum of Understanding agree to the following:

1. PURPOSE OF MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING

2. DEFINITIONS

In this MOU:

  1. "AAD" means the Treasury Board/Management Board of Cabinet Agencies & Appointments Directive, as amended from time to time;
  2. "Accountability and Governance Documents" mean the documents, frameworks and reports required under the ATAGAA and the AAD;
  3. "ADAG" means the Assistant Deputy Attorney General of Policy Division, the division responsible for agencies and tribunals within the Ministry of the Attorney General;
  4. "Alternate Executive Chair" means the Associate Chair appointed within Tribunals Ontario as Alternate Executive Chair;
  5. "Annual Report" means the annual report described under article 9.2 of this MOU;
  6. "AODA" means the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005, S.O. 2005, c. 11;
  7. "Applicable Government Directives" means the government directives, policies, standards and guidelines that apply to Tribunals Ontario and its Constituent Tribunals, as may be amended or replaced from time to time, which are listed in Schedule 3 to this MOU;
  8. "Appointee" means the Executive Chair or Alternate Executive Chair of Tribunals Ontario, or an Associate Chair, Vice-Chair, or members of Tribunals Ontario’s Constituent Tribunals appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, but does not mean persons employed or appointed by Tribunals Ontario or its Constituent Tribunals pursuant to Part III of the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006, c. 35, Sch. A;
  9. "Associate Chairs" means the Associate Chairs appointed to Constituent Tribunals within Tribunals Ontario;
  10. "ATAGAA" means the Adjudicative Tribunals Accountability, Governance and Appointments Act, 2009, S.O. 2009, c. 13, sch. 5;
  11. “Auditor General” means the Auditor appointed under section 2 of the Auditor General Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. A.35;
  12. "Business Plan" means the business plan referred to in article 9.1 of this MOU;
  13. “Constituent Tribunals" means the tribunals designated by the Lieutenant Governor in Council as a tribunal cluster under Ontario Regulation 126/10 (Adjudicative Tribunals and Clusters) made under the ATAGAA, currently consisting of: the Animal Care Review Board, the Assessment Review Board, the Child and Family Services Review Board, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, the Custody Review Board, the Fire Safety Commission, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, the Landlord and Tenant Board, the Licence Appeal Tribunal, , the Ontario Civilian Police Commission, the Ontario Parole Board, the Ontario Special Education Tribunal (English), Ontario Special Education Tribunal (French) and the Social Benefits Tribunal;
  14. "Deputy Minister" means the Deputy Attorney General or his/her designate (i.e. the ADAG of the division responsible for agencies and tribunals within the Ministry of the Attorney General);
  15. “Executive Chair" means the Executive Chair of Tribunals Ontario;
  16. “Executive Director” means the Executive Director of Tribunals Ontario;
  17. “FIPPA” means the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. F.31;
  18. “Fiscal Year" means the period from April 1 to March 31 of the following year;
  19. “Government" means the Government of Ontario;
  20. "Management Principles" mean accepted business and financial standards and procedures, and accepted standards of ethical behaviour, accountability, excellence in management, and quality service, and includes an adherence to the policies, procedures, guidelines and applicable government directives;
  21. "MBC" means Management Board of Cabinet;
  22. “Member” means an Appointee of one or more of Tribunal Ontario’s Constituent Tribunals by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, who is not an Associate Chair or Vice-Chair;
  23. "Minister" means the Attorney General of Ontario;
  24. "Ministry" means the Ministry of the Attorney General;
  25. "MOF" means the Ministry of Finance;
  26. "MOU" means this Memorandum of Understanding signed by the Minister and the Executive Chair, including its Schedules and any written amendments;
  27. "Performance Measures” means measures established by Tribunals Ontario in order to ensure the accountability of its Constituent Tribunals in serving tribunal users and fulfilling their mandates;
  28. "PSOA" means the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006, S.O. 2006, c.35, Schedule A;
  29. "Schedules" means the schedules attached to this MOU;
  30. "TB" means Treasury Board;
  31. "Tribunals Ontario" means Tribunals Ontario, the cluster of tribunals designated under the ATAGAA, now composed of the Animal Care Review Board, the Assessment Review Board, the Child and Family Services Review Board, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, the Custody Review Board, the Fire Safety Commission, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, the Landlord and Tenant Board, the Licence Appeal Tribunal, the Ontario Civilian Police Commission, the Ontario Parole Board, the Ontario Special Education Tribunal (English), Ontario Special Education Tribunal (French) and the Social Benefits Tribunal, and when used in this MOU, includes each of the Constituent Tribunals;
  32. “Tribunal” has the same meaning as Constituent Tribunal above;
  33. “Vice-Chairs” means the Vice-Chairs appointed to Constituent Tribunals within Tribunals Ontario.

3. TRIBUNALS ONTARIO’S LEGISLATIVE AUTHORITY AND MANDATE

4. STATUS AND CLASSIFICATION

5. GUIDING PRINCIPLES

6. ACCOUNTABILITY RELATIONSHIPS

7. ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

8. ETHICAL FRAMEWORK

9. REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

10. PUBLIC POSTING REQUIREMENTS

11. COMMUNICATIONS AND ISSUES MANAGEMENT

12. ADMINISTRATIVE ARRANGEMENTS

13. FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS

14. AUDIT AND REVIEW ARRANGEMENTS

15. STAFFING & APPOINTMENTS

16. RISK MANAGEMENT, LIABILITY PROTECTION AND INSURANCE

17. EFFECTIVE DATE AND DURATION AND PERIODIC REVIEW OF THE MOU


Executed this 30th day of September 2020.

Doug Downey
Attorney General of Ontario

Sean Weir
Executive Chair
Tribunals Ontario



SCHEDULE 1
COMMUNICATIONS PROTOCOL

I. PURPOSE

  1. To establish clear lines of communication between the Ministry (i.e. the Minister’s Office, the Deputy Minister’s Office or the ADAG, and Ministry staff) and Tribunals Ontario.
  2. To establish a process for dealing with requests from Ministry staff for briefing material/issue notes.

II. PRINCIPLES

This supplements the MOU, which defines the specific roles, responsibilities and relationship between the Ministry and Tribunals Ontario.

Tribunals Ontario and its Constituent Tribunals exercise their adjudicative and related functions independently of the Government, the Ministry and the Minister, subject only to the provisions, limitations and conditions set out in the constituting statutes of the Constituent Tribunals as identified in article 3.2 and Schedule 5 of this MOU, ATAGAA, and any other legislation governing Tribunals Ontario and this MOU.

Tribunals Ontario’s Constituent Tribunals are Adjudicative Tribunals as designated by the Management Board of Cabinet and ATAGAA. The commitment of the Government to independent tribunals capable of efficiently and effectively fulfilling their mandates requires that the Minister, the Ministry and Tribunals Ontario establish communication relationships, which are respectful of:

III. LINES OF COMMUNICATION/PROTOCOLS

  1. Communication between the Ministry and Tribunals Ontario

    The Minister’s office shall coordinate communication with Tribunals Ontario through the office of the Executive Chair. The Deputy Minister or the ADAG shall communicate with the Executive Chair or Executive Director.

  2. Questions or Complaints about Individual Cases

    The parties recognize and accept that it is inappropriate for Tribunals Ontario to discuss or communicate with the Minister or Ministry about non-public information relating to specific cases that are under active consideration by the tribunals.

  3. Complaints about Tribunals Ontario’s Services, Members or Staff

    Telephone or written inquiries from members of the public to the Minister’s Office, or Ministry staff about Tribunals Ontario's policies and procedures are to be directed to Tribunals Ontario, either through Tribunals Ontario public information lines or in writing to Tribunals Ontario offices. Complaints about the conduct of Members or employees of Tribunals Ontario will be directed to the Executive Chair, or the Executive Director, respectively, in accordance with Tribunals Ontario’s Complaints Policy.

  4. Media Responses

    Tribunals Ontario will immediately notify the Ministry upon receiving a media inquiry relating to a contentious issue. An issue is considered contentious if it is, or may reasonably be expected to be, of concern to the Legislative Assembly or the public, or is likely to result in inquiries being directed to the Minister or government. Tribunals Ontario will provide advance notice to the Ministry of all media responses.

  5. Briefing Material/Issue Notes

    Tribunals Ontario will prepare briefing or issue notes for the Minister upon the request of the Minister’s office or the Ministry, so long as such requests do not deal with cases under active consideration by the Constituent Tribunals, or matters which are expected to come before the Constituent Tribunals.

    Tribunals Ontario will prepare and deliver to the Ministry background information on specific issues, within the timeframe suggested, in accordance with Tribunals Ontario’s independent function.

  6. Ministry's and Tribunals Ontario's Communication Materials

    Whenever practical, the Ministry will give advance notice to the Executive Chair of the general content of documents or messages regarding Tribunals Ontario's operations and mandates and permit the Executive Chair a reasonable period to provide comments and suggestions.

    Whenever practical, the Executive Chair will give the Minister advance notice of the general content of documents or messages of a public nature that might reasonably be expected to be of interest to the Minister. The Executive Director will similarly advise the Deputy Minister or the ADAG. Tribunals Ontario’s public materials will comply with the government’s visual identity guidelines and legal requirements for accessibility.



SCHEDULE 2
REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

The Executive Chair will ensure that the following reports, statements and documents are submitted to the Minister for review and approval:


SCHEDULE 3
APPLICABLE TB/MBC AND MINISTRY OF FINANCE DIRECTIVES

  1. The following TB/MBC and government directives, guidelines and policies apply to Tribunals Ontario and the Constituent Tribunals:

  2. Tribunals Ontario and its Constituent Tribunals are responsible for complying with all directives, policies, guidelines to which it is subject, irrespective of whether it is included on the list above.

  3. The Ministry is responsible for informing Tribunals Ontario of amendments or additions to directives, policies, guidelines, and provisions under applicable collective agreements that apply to the Tribunals.


SCHEDULE 4
ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT

The Deputy Minister or the ADAG will ensure that the Ministry, authorized outside contractors, Justice Technology Services, or the Ontario Shared Services provide the following operations support services to Tribunals Ontario:

Financial Administration: accounts payable, revenues, purchasing, accounts receivable, including usage of IFIS facilities for process these services where available, technical advice, purchasing, accounts receivable central mail and printing services, records and form advisory services.

Human Resources Services: pay and benefits administration; classification; advice and consultation regarding recruitment procedures and staff relations; job description writing; counselling regarding career planning and staff development; and advice and consultation regarding corporate initiatives such as the Occupational Health and Safety Policy, the Preventing Barriers in Employment Policy, and the Respectful Workplace Policy (Policy to Support a Respectful Workplace and Prevent Workplace Harassment and Discrimination), and other standard human resources services. The Ministry will assist the Executive Director in ensuring that corporate educational opportunities and career planning services are available to the Tribunals Ontario staff, and that these are communicated effectively to staff.

Diversity and Inclusion Services: strategic advice, guidance and expertise on diversity and inclusion challenges; support in the development of a diversity and inclusion strategy and Performance Measures.

Information Technology and Telecommunications Services: services, advice and consultation including independent and external website.

Internal Audit: financial compliance, management, human resources and information systems audits; operational reviews and special investigations as required; consultations and training as required.

Accommodation Planning: facilities planning and relocation services, including AODA compliance and lease renewals.

Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Program Services: (as required).

French Language Services: advice in meeting obligations under the applicable legislation, translation and interpretation services.

Communications Assistance: Communications assistance will be provided in accordance with the protocol established in Schedule 1 of this MOU.

Legal Services: (as required and subject to specific objectives).


SCHEDULE 5
APPLICABLE LEGISLATION

The specific legislative authorities for Tribunal Ontario’s Constituent Tribunals are as follows:

The Constituent Tribunals also exercise powers and authority granted under other statutes, including, but not limited to:


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