Support for the Minister's Set-Up

Transition Administration

In preparation for your arrival, Anne-Marie Pelletier, Director General of Ministerial Services and Access to Information, will be meeting with your Chief of Staff and work is under way to organize and arrange for the set-up of your office. The Director General will lead transition operations and will be your Ministerial Services main point of contact for the timely response to your office's administrative support requests.

The main administrative needs for your office to be fully operational and the process for the provision of these required elements are presented in the diagram below:

Meet with Director General and identify requirements.

  • Immediate Minister requirements
    • Photograph
    • Car and driver
    • Security and parking passes
    • Telecoms (BlackBerry devices and mobile phones)
    • Secure communications
    • Special passport
    • Signature block for correspondence

Confirm organizational structure, financial authorities and location of staff in the Office.

  • Immediate Chief of Staff and staff requirements
    • Security clearance
    • Letter of offer
    • Security and House of Commons passes
    • Notebooks
    • Telecoms (BlackBerry devices)
    • Travel cards and calling cards
  • Meet with staff members regarding their accommodation and equipment needs.
    • Office set-up
    • Telephone and voicemail activation
    • Email set-up
    • Notebooks and BlackBerry devices
    • HR account set-up

The Director General, Ministerial Services and Access to Information, will organize several meetings with your Chief of Staff to discuss your office needs and to obtain the necessary information for the Department to ensure your office is well supported. This includes information such as employee personal data, contact details, parking needs, secure telecommunications needs, organizational structure and newspaper subscriptions preferences. 

Furthermore, Ministerial Services will provide ongoing administrative support to your office beyond the transition.

Floor Plan

Accommodation services will be provided to your office through the Ministerial Services point of contact.

The department will:

  • coordinate incoming moves,
  • issue parking permits to you, for your departmental vehicle and for your Chief of Staff,
  • set up new signage and install it on doors, directory boards, bulletin boards, etc.,
  • provide a floor plan and full support for the set-up of offices and workstations.

Slide 1


Setting Up and Managing the Minister's Office

Slide 2

Table of Contents

  1. Minister's Office Budget
  2. Staffing the Minister's Office
  3. The Minister's Office Workspace and Tools
  4. Security Services for the Minister's Office
  5. Managing the Minister's Office Records
  6. Proactive Disclosure of Travel & Hospitality and Contracts
  7. Overview of the Lobbying Act
  8. Overview of the Conflict of Interest Act

Slide 3

1. Minister's Office Budget

In accordance with the Treasury Board Policies for Ministers' Offices section 4.1, the Treasury Board provides ministers with a budget.

Minister's Office Budget Structure

  • Exempt Staff Salary
  • Departmental Staff
  • Operating Cost Budget
  • Parliamentary Secretary's Assistant Salary and Operating
  • Regional Salary and Operating
  • Funds can be transferred between budget categories
  • Ministers cannot exceed their budgets

Motor Vehicle and Driver

The Department provides a motor vehicle for the Minister's official use on government portfolio, ministerial business and for personal use. A reserved parking space is provided.

A driver can be appointed by the Minister pursuant to section 128 of the Public Service Employment Act and is "exempt" from the appointing procedures of the Public Service of Canada. The salary is covered by the Exempt Staff Salary Budget above.

Delegation of Human Resources and Financial Signing Authority

Human Resources

The Minister has the authority to hire, determine salaries and salary increases, and terminate employment of exempt staff as per the Policies for Minister's Office, Section 3.2.

This authority cannot be delegated.


The Minister has authority for expenditures related to his/her ministers' office budget.

These authorities may be delegated to a chief of staff or other exempt staff member, but they cannot be sub-delegated

Financial Support Services

Ministerial Services is the primary contact for support with regard to the Minister's Office Budget.

Your primary point of contact is:

Slide 4

2. Staffing the Minister's Office

In accordance with the Treasury Board Policies for Ministers' Offices section 3.2, members of a minister's exempt staff are appointed by the Minister pursuant to section 128 of the Public Service Employment Act and are "exempt" from the appointing procedures of the Public Service of Canada.

Departmental Assistant provides liaison between Minister's office and the Department

Exempt Staff
  • Employees of the Minister
  • Serve at Pleasure
  • Not public Servants and exempt from provisions of the Public Service Employment Act
Public Works and Government Services Canada Staff
  • Public Servants
  • Provide professional and non-partisan advice and support

Hiring Exempt Staff

The Minister may configure exempt staff complement to suit demands of his/her portfolio

  • Only Treasury Board approved position titles can be used (Section 3.2.1 and Appendix A of the Policies for Ministers' Offices).
  • Each position has a salary maximum equivalent to a Public Service group and level (Section
  • Only the Minister has authority to award salary increases
  • Relocation expenses of appointees (EX-2 equivalent and above) can be reimbursed at the discretion of the Minister
  • First salary increase after appointment establishes anniversary date for further increases
  • Exempt staff participate in Pension and Benefits plan provided to Public Servant

Human Resources Support Services

The Department will prepare letters of offer for each exempt staff hired, update information in PeopleSoft and enroll staff in Pay System (Miramichi).

Your primary point of contact is:

Slide 5

3. The Ministers' Office Workspace and Tools

Office Workspace

In accordance with the Treasury Board Policies for Ministers' Offices section 5.2, the Government of Canada provides office space, furniture, fixtures and equipment for your use.

The Minister's Office Suite includes:

  • 1 Minister Suite including washroom
  • Enclosed offices for Chief of Staff and exempt staff
  • Workstations for administrative staff
  • Touch down spaces for contractors and students
  • 1 Kitchen, open collaborative space, meeting room and shared equipment room
  • Furniture and equipment requirements beyond this are funded through the Minister's operation budget.
  • Ministerial Services is the primary contact for support with regard to office space, facilitating moves and allocating space based on the requirements of your office.

Information Technology Devices

The following technological devices will be provided to each member of the Minister's Office staff:

  • Software equipped Laptop (Toshiba) or tablets (Surface Pro III) connected to separate Shared Drive Network
  • BlackBerry Classic, BlackBerry Passport or Blackberry Leap to the Minister and Chief of Staff and BlackBerry Q10 to all other exempt staff.

The department will provide on site support to install devices and support users to orient and train exempt staff on the features and functions of these devices. Provide white glove information technology consultation and support for installation and use of all devices

Your primary point of contact is:

Slide 6

4. Security Services for the Minister's Office

In accordance with the Treasury Board Policies for Ministers' Offices section 5.2, the Government of Canada provides office space, furniture, fixtures and equipment for your use.

Departmental Security Services for the Minister's Office and Exempt Staff

  1. Personal Security for the Minister
    • The RCMP orient the Minister on precautions to take to ensure his/her safety. In the case of a specific threat, the RCMP can offer additional assistance (detail service)
    • PCO has conducted an Order in Council verification and security briefing prior to the appointment of the Minister
  2. Security to the Minister's Office Staff
    • The Department will process the security clearance of all exempt staff (Secret) prior to their appointment
    • The Department Security Officer (DSO) will provide a security briefing to the Minister and exempt staff
    • A House of Common pass will be provided to appropriate Minister's office staff if required
  3. Secure Access in the Minister's Office Suite
    • The Minister's suite is an enclosed area secured with card readers located at all perimeter suite entry doors. Access is restricted to authorized personnel only. A video intercom camera is installed at the main entrance and communicates with the receptionist to control access.
    • Access cards will be provided to all exempt staff. Secured cabinets are available to store up to secret documents.
    • Office keys, shredders and combination locks for secured cabinets are provided to safeguard information and assets.
    • IT Security-Communications Security will install and support a secure telephone, a secure fax and a secure cell phone in the Minister's office and any other location as required.

Slide 7

5. Managing the Minister's Office Records

The management of information in the Minister's Office is governed by Policies for Ministers' Offices, Section 10 that ensures the records of Minister's Offices adheres to the Government of Canada Policy on Information Management.

Minister's record's fall into four categories:

Correspondence from the Prime Minister, the Privy Council Office, Portfolio Business Documents, Official Assignment from the Prime Minister, Communications between ministers
Records under control of the government institution, Records that pertains to the mandate of the Department
Personal or Political
Minister's constituency business, Minister's role as a Member of Parliament, Party political matters, Deliberations of Cabinet and committees
Cabinet agendas
Cabinet minutes
Records of Cabinet decisions

Recommended that the Minister sign a memorandum of understanding to segregate electronic records of the Office of the Minister.

  • Recommend that records be filed separately into the four categories

Your primary point of contact is:

Slide 8

6. Proactive Disclosure of Travel, Hospitality and Contracts

In accordance with the Treasury Board Policy on Proactive Disclosure, Ministers, Ministers of State, Parliamentary Secretaries, all exempt staff, senior level employees at the Deputy Minister, Assistant Deputy Minister, and equivalent levels, are required to disclose all travel and hospitality expenses quarterly on departmental websites. In addition, it is mandatory that all contracts entered into for amounts over $10,000 be disclosed.


  • Name of traveller
  • Purpose of the trip
  • Period covered by the trip and destination
  • Transportation expenses
  • Accommodation expenses
  • Meals, incidentals and other expenses
  • Total cost of the trip


  • Name of Minister and staff
  • Event description and date
  • Number of attendees
  • Location where the hospitality occurred
  • Total amount of hospitality expense


  • Vendor name
  • Contract date
  • Description of work
  • Contract delivery date
  • Contract value
  • Contract vehicle used

Before posting information on Travel, Hospitality and Contracts, Public Works and Government Services Canada verifies data integrity, ensures all expenses are disclosed and that policy requirements are met.

Canadians can access the Public Works and Government Services Canada's Travel and Hospitality Expenses and Contract reports on the departmental website under the Transparency section.

Slide 9

7. Overview of the Lobbying Act

This Act applies to individuals who are paid to lobby. People who lobby on a voluntary basis are not required to register.

Principles: The Lobbying Act provides that free and open access to government is an important matter of public interest and that lobbying, when conducted openly and transparently, is a legitimate activity.

The Lobbying Act identifies three types of lobbyists:

  1. Consultant Lobbyist
  2. In-House Lobbyist (Corporations)
  3. In-House Lobbyist (Organizations)
  • The Lobbying Act sets out obligations and reporting requirements for paid lobbyists (consultant and in-house) who communicate with Designated Public Office Holders (DPOH) on behalf of a third party.
  • The Lobbying Act outlines post-employment rules for former DPOHs, including a five-year post-employment prohibition. These individuals cannot:
    • work as consultant lobbyists;
    • work as in-house lobbyists for an organization and carry out lobbying activities on behalf of that organization; or
    • work as in-house lobbyists for a corporation if lobbying constitutes a significant part of their work.
  • The Commissioner of Lobbying is the authority when it comes to educating DPOHs on their obligations under the acts. Her office provides information sessions tailored to their respective audiences.

Slide 10

8. Overview of the Conflict of Interest Act

As per the Conflict of Interest Act, a public office holder is in a conflict of interest when he or she exercises an official power, duty or function that provides an opportunity to further his or her private interests or those of his or her relatives or friends or to improperly further another person's private interests.

  • Public Office Holders are subject to the obligations imposed in Part I of the Conflict of Interest Act with respect to avoiding conflicts of interest. In general, this means that they are required to avoid situations where the exercise of their powers, duties and functions would provide an opportunity to further their own private interests, the private interests of their friends or relatives, to improperly further the private interests of any other party.
  • In addition, they are required to recuse themselves from any decision making that would place them in a conflict of interest (as per section 21). They are also subject to the post-employment rules in sections 33 and 34, which prohibit them from taking “improper advantage” of their positions after leaving, acting in any “specific proceeding, transaction, negotiation or case” for which they previously acted for or advised the Crown, and from giving advice to clients or employers using information obtained through their positions and not available to the public. These post-employment restrictions are not time-limited.
  • The Act also imposes strict annual reporting requirements on Public Office Holders, who must submit confidential reports to the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner to ensure that they have complied with their statutory obligations.