Evaluation of Small and Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOE) – Final Report

September 2014

[*] An asterisk appears where sensitive information has been removed in accordance with the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act.

Executive Summary

Background

The Canada Border Services Agency’s (CBSA) mandate is to facilitate the movement of legitimate travellers and goods and to detect and interdict those travellers and goods that pose a threat to Canada. The CBSA fulfills this mandate by providing integrated border services that support national security, public safety and economic prosperity priorities at its Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOEs). The objective is to efficiently administer and enforce the regulatory requirements of customs, immigration, food, plant and animal, and other Acts of Parliament and their associated regulations, while facilitating the entry of admissible people and goods. In FY 2012–2013, the CBSA spent $48.8 million on capital investments, the maintenance of facilities and delivery of border services at SRPOEs.Footnote 1

Evaluation Purpose

The purpose of this evaluation was to assess the relevance and performance of the CBSA SRPOEs in accordance with the Treasury Board Secretariat Policy on Evaluation.Footnote 2 The data collected from various methodologies, using both quantitative and qualitative methods, was triangulated to develop the findings. The recommendations presented are based on these findings. The CBSA’s Program Evaluation Division carried out the evaluation research between April and November 2013.

Summary of Findings

Relevance

Is there a demonstrable and continued need for border services at SRPOE locations, and are they aligned with Government of Canada roles, responsibilities and priorities and with the CBSA priorities?

There is a demonstrable and continued need for the CBSA to provide border processing at SRPOEs across Canada. The CBSA provides integrated border services at SRPOEs in line with the Agency’s mandate to support national security and public safety priorities and facilitate the free flow of people and goods. The services delivered at SRPOEs also support the broader Government of Canada priority of A safe and secure Canada through the securing of Canadian borders.Footnote 3 The rationale for continued operations in these locations is that there is a need to provide communities access to border services.

Performance

To what extent are there consistent and continuous services provided at SRPOEs?

The continuous availability of services at SRPOEs allows the Agency to facilitate the entry of people and goods into Canada while providing integrated border services to local communities.

Facilities at SRPOEs are a major impediment to the consistent delivery of services as they do not accommodate current and future border operations. Numerous occupational health and safety issues have also been identified at SRPOEs. Facility limitations in turn impact the Agency’s ability to efficiently process travellers and goods at these locations and moreover, without infrastructure and technology enhancements there is a risk that the CBSA will not meet its strategic goals to implement parts of the Beyond the Border Action Plan (BtB) and modernize business processes.Footnote 4 However, the Agency will invest $99 million in infrastructure at SRPOEs over the next five years, which will address the health and safety issues identified with SRPOE facilities. Additionally, investments are planned under BtB Small and Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOE) and Entry/Exit initiatives that will support the consistency of service delivery at SRPOEs.

To what extent are travellers and/or goods entering Canada through SRPOEs in compliance with Canadian laws and are risks identified and mitigated at SRPOEs?

The CBSA continues to identify and intercept inadmissible people and goods at SRPOEs and compared to larger ports of entry, the rate of traveller, immigration and commercial enforcement is relatively similar. [*]

What, if any, impact has the Doubling-up initiative had on operations and operational supervision at SRPOEs?

With the implementation of the Doubling-up initiative, the CBSA has eliminated work-alone situations at SRPOEs. However, the initiative has had an impact on operational management by increasing the demand for officers and staffing requirements at SRPOEs. It is a challenge at SRPOEs to ensure that requirements in place such as the annual recertification training for firearms are met and to provide opportunities to further officer skills and expertise in commercial and immigration processing. The Doubling-up initiative has increased the ratio of border services officers to Superintendents at SRPOEsFootnote 5 creating challenges in assessing performance, and providing leadership and support to officers.

Efficiency and Economy

Are services at SRPOEs delivered efficiently and cost-effectively and are there any alternatives to delivering services while still achieving program objectives?

Overall spending at SRPOEs increased between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.Footnote 6 Expenditures for the Doubling-up initiative have exceeded the initially allocated $30.5 million. Additional funding for the initiative was later acquired for increasing the management ranks by 35 positions and costs to cover meal periods as well as to cover absences due to vacation, illness and training.

Currently, there is no service delivery framework for SRPOEs that could be used to rationalize SRPOE locations or to assess the services required at a given SRPOE. SRPOEs have large variations in the hours of operation, annual traveller processing and commercial release volumes, distance to alternative POEs, and proximity to towns and cities. Even though there are significant regional differences in service delivery at SRPOEs and adjustments to services offered would further mitigate risks, the costs of delivery would remain the same. Thus, the requirement to meet existing service levels and Agency policies at SRPOEs impedes the Agency’s ability to achieve savings without the use of technology or closing POEs. Furthermore, without a finalized Performance Measurement Framework for SRPOEs the evaluation is limited in determining cost-effectiveness and efficiency at SRPOEs.

Recommendations, Management Response and Action Plan

Planned investments under the BtB SRPOE and Entry/Exit initiatives will impact service delivery at SRPOEs. This evaluation provides some benchmark information that can be used to monitor and assess the results of those initiatives; however, the Agency is limited in its ability to monitor and assess program results as well as make informed decisions on the ongoing management of SRPOEs due to the limitations on available and consistent performance data.

Though the provision of integrated border services at these locations facilitates the entry of people and goods into Canada, limitations related to service and policy requirements hinder the CBSA’s capacity to achieve savings through adjusting services and resource levels. Large variations in the types of services offered at SPROEs further limit the Agency’s ability to consistently facilitate the movement of legitimate travellers and goods while interdicting those that pose a threat to Canada.

In light of these findings it is recommended that:

Recommendation 1:

The Vice-President of the Programs Branch, in consultation with the Vice-President of the Operations Branch, develop criteria to determine the types of services offered at SRPOEs and measure performance.

Management Response

The Programs and Operations Branches agree with the recommendation to develop criteria for determining the types of services offered at small and/or remote ports. These criteria, along with program performance measurement will help inform management decisions with respect to the future service delivery framework at small and/or remote ports.

Management Action Plan Completion date
The Operations Branch, supported by the Programs Branch, will identify the information the Agency holds as well as where it is held as it relates to the delivery of services at small and/or remote ports of entry. Completed
The Programs Branch, supported by the Operations Branch, will develop national criteria for the type and level Traveller and Commercial services that should be offered at small and/or remote ports. June 2015
The Programs Branch, supported by the Operations Branch, will develop national performance measurement criteria in order to monitor performance of all Traveller and Commercial services offered at small and/or remote ports. June 2015

1. Introduction and Context

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) provides integrated border services that support national security priorities and facilitates the free flow of people and goods, including food, plants, animals and related products, across the border. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2012–2013, the CBSA processed 71 million passengers and 9.9 million commercial releases at its 117 land border crossings.Footnote 1 Over 3.4 million travellers (or 4.8% of all travellers) and 196,239 commercial releases (or 2.0% of all commercial releases) were processed at the Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOEs) identified within the scope of this evaluation during the same FY.Footnote 2

The Customs ActFootnote 3 and the Immigration and Refugee Protection ActFootnote 4 stipulate that at the time of entry into Canada, persons are required to report to the CBSA and to answer truthfully any questions asked by a border services officer (BSO), as well as provide all relevant information and documents. Furthermore, all commercial goods imported into Canada must be reported at a designated CBSA office.Footnote 5 Every person who reports the goods must also answer truthfully to any question asked by an officer. Travellers and shipments may be referred to secondary inspection for examination before they are released.

In FY 2012–2013, the CBSA spent $48.8 million for capital investments, the maintenance of facilities and delivery of border services at SRPOEs.Footnote 6

Evaluation Purpose and Scope

The evaluation of the CBSA’s SRPOEs was identified for completion in FY 2013–2014 in the 2013–2018 CBSA Five-Year Program Evaluation Plan approved by the Executive Evaluation Committee in July 2013. The purpose of the evaluation was to examine the relevance, performance, efficiency and economy of the CBSA’s SRPOEs in accordance with the Treasury Board Secretariat Policy on Evaluation.Footnote 7 In addition, the evaluation is intended to provide benchmark informationFootnote 8 to support the SRPOE initiative under the Beyond the Border Action Plan (BtB).Footnote 9 The CBSA Program Evaluation Division carried out the evaluation research between March and October 2013. Details of the research methodologies are provided in Appendix D.

The data collected from various methodologies, using both quantitative and qualitative methods, was triangulated to develop the findings. The recommendations presented are based on these findings.

An evaluation plan and framework were developed based on the activities, outputs and expected outcomes identified in the program logic model that was developed in consultation with program management. The program logic model is provided in Appendix C. Exhibit 1 below lists the evaluation questions that were used to assess program relevance and performance.

Exhibit 1: Evaluation Questions

  • Evaluation Issue: Relevance (Is there a continued and on-going need for the program?)
    • Are services delivered at SRPOEs aligned with CBSA and Government of Canada priorities and roles and responsibilities?
    • Is there a demonstrable and continued need for border services at SRPOE locations?
  • Evaluation Issue: Performance - Achievement of Expected Outcomes (Are the activities achieving the expected results?)
    • To what extent are there consistent and continuous services provided at SRPOE?
    • To what extent are travellers and/or goods entering Canada through SRPOEs in compliance with Canadian laws and are risks identified and mitigated at SRPOEs?
    • What, if any, impact has the Doubling-up initiative had on operations and operational supervision at SRPOEs?
  • Evaluation Issue: Efficiency and Economy (Demonstration of Efficiency and Economy)
    • Are services at SRPOEs delivered efficiently and cost-effectively?
    • Are there any alternatives to delivering services at SRPOEs while still achieving program objectives?

Evaluation Research Limitations

The evaluation methodology was designed to provide multiple lines of evidence. The data and information were collected to respond to the evaluation questions and issues. The following data limitations were noted:

  • Some types of performance information for SRPOEs are not available for of all the individual SRPOEs, as some SRPOEs are reported on under the larger ports of entry (POEs) within the Districts. For example, immigration and commercial processing.
  • Financial data for processing activities was available by mode and location only and not split between the commercial and traveller streams. As a result, it was not possible to fully analyze operational performance, efficiencies and trends at SRPOEs in order to make a determination of program efficiency.
  • Revenue data was not available for all SRPOEs.
  • The financial data for the Doubling-up initiative is only available at a regional level and not for a specific SRPOE, although incremental full time equivalent are identified by SRPOE. It was not possible to fully attribute expenditures related to the Doubling-up initiative to the individual SRPOEs under examination.
  • Cost and projected benefit data was not available for the BtB Remote Traveller Processing pilots;
  • Given that the program performance indicators have not been established for SRPOEs, there were limited opportunities to provide benchmark information for the BtB SRPOE initiative.
  • Commercial examinations are not being tracked consistently from region to region and POE to POE. For example, some regions reported tracking cab checks as commercial and not traveller examinations. Additionally, some regions are tracking cab checks as a load check or another examination type. Consequently, examination rates at SRPOEs could not be reliably compared to overall land border examination rates.

2. Key Findings – Relevance

Are services delivered at SRPOEs aligned with CBSA and Government of Canada priorities and roles and responsibilities?

Integrated border services delivered at SRPOEs are aligned with the CBSA’s mandate, roles and responsibilities as well as the Government of Canada’s strategic priorities and outcomes.

The Agency’s mandate for providing integrated border services that support national security and public safety priorities while facilitating the free flow of admissible people and goods is clearly established in the Canada Border Services Agency Act.Footnote 10 The CBSA is a key federal government organization that contributes significantly to the Government of Canada's priorities of promoting its economic prosperity and enhancing the well-being of Canadians. It ensures that the border remains open to legitimate people and goods. BSOs conducting traveller and commercial processing activities are the first line of defence against inadmissible people and goods. SRPOEs also support the broader Government of Canada priority of A safe and secure Canada through the securing of Canadian borders. Footnote 11

In December 2011, Canada and the United States jointly announced the Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan (Beyond the Border Action Plan, or BtB). The BtB includes the Small and Remote Ports of Entry initiative, and within the initiative a bi-national Small Ports Working Group (SPWG) has been convened.Footnote 12 The SPWG is mandated to develop a binational approach to SRPOEs and to implement consensus recommendations in order to improve service and efficiency at SRPOEs.Footnote 13 The 2013 Speech from the Throne reconfirmed the implementation of the BtB to speed the flow of people, goods and services between Canada and the United States as a priority of the Government of Canada.Footnote 14

Is there a demonstrable and continued need for border services at SRPOE locations?

There is an identified and continued need to provide border services at SRPOEs.

An average of 3.2 million travellers (about 4.9% of all travellers in the highway mode) are processed annually, and an average of 203,207 commercial shipments released (about 2.2% of all releases) at SRPOEs between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.Footnote 15

There was an increase in the volume of travellers and commercial releases between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013, by 14.2% and 10.6% respectively, pointing to an increasing demand for border services at SRPOEs. However, not all SRPOEs have seen an increase, and the volume of traffic in FY 2012–2013 ranged from five travellers or less than one commercial release a day to 549 and 72 respectively.Footnote 16 Similarly, SRPOE opening hours vary.

There are strong ties between many United States and Canadian border communities. These communities in many cases form cross-border economic regions that share infrastructure and essential services.Footnote 17 There is a need to provide communities access to border services. Often, the nearest grocery store, gas station, school or emergency service is located on one side of the border, making access to border services critical, especially for emergency responders. Expansion of operating hours to 24/7 through remote traveller processing at key SRPOEs would provide a vital link between border communities.Footnote 18

The 2010 Strategic Review closed three SPROEs and reduced operating hours at an additional three SRPOEs as of April 2011; however, subsequent requests to reduce operating hours, harmonize operations with the United States Customs and Border Protection, and/or close low volume SRPOEs in two regions were unsuccessful.Footnote 19

3. Key Findings – Performance

To what extent are there consistent and continuous services provided at SRPOEs?

The overall proportion of traveller at SRPOEs has decreased and number of travellers processed at SRPOEs remains low however, there has been an increase in the traffic facilitated at SRPOEs.

SRPOEs account for 51.3% of all CBSA land-border POEs.Footnote 20 From FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013, traveller volumes at the SRPOEs have increased by 14.2% from 3.0 million to 3.4 million,Footnote 21 and conveyance volumes have increased by 14% from 1.8 million to 2 million.Footnote 22 Though traveller and conveyance volumes at SRPOEs have increased in every region since FY 2009–2010, the overall proportion of travellers and conveyances has decreased.Footnote 23 Increases in traveller and conveyance volumes for all land border POEs have been slightly higher with 17.3% and 19.0% respectively over the same period.Footnote 24 Daily traveller volumes at SRPOEs varied from 5 to 549 travellers per day on average in FY 2012–2013, and daily conveyance volumes varied from 7 to 225 conveyances per day.Footnote 25

Exhibit 2: Traveller and conveyanceFootnote 26 volumes at land ports and at SRPOEs,
FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013

  FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013
National Traveller volume 60,058,189 64,993,989 69,692,299 70,984,749
SRPOE Traveller volume 2,983,149 3,192,904 3,349,103 3,426,284
% of National Traveller Volume 5.0% 4.9% 4.8% 4.8%
National Conveyance Volume 31,342,031 34,013,650 36,907,022 37,639,887
SRPOE Conveyance Volume 1,756,546 1,866,788 1,979,682 2,006,604
% of National Conveyance Volume 5.6% 5.5% 5.4% 4.8%

Source: Data provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, February 2014

Furthermore, compared to larger POEs there have been fewer service interruptions at SRPOEs. Only four SRPOEs (Carway, Clarenceville, Hereford Road and Winkler) reported significantFootnote 27 border wait times of more than 60 minutes in 2013Footnote 28 and between May 2010 and May 2013, less than 4% of all reported occurrences of significant border wait times at the land border occurred at SRPOEs.Footnote 29

Similar to the traveller stream, the overall proportion of commercial releases has decreased and the number of commercial release conducted at SRPOEs remains low; however, there has been an increase in the commercial traffic facilitated at SRPOEs.Footnote 30

The overall number of commercial releases conducted at SRPOEs has increased in four of five regions between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013. However, similar to traveller and conveyances the overall proportion of commercial releases has decreased over the same period. In the Atlantic, Northern Ontario, Prairie and Pacific regions, commercial release volume at the SRPOEs increased by 72.0%, 34.0%, 36.8% and 32.4% respectively from FY 2009–2010Footnote 31 to FY 2012–2013 (Exhibit 3).Footnote 32

Exhibit 3: Number of commercial releases at SRPOEs,
 FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013

Region FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013
Atlantic 7,224 7,166 7,557 12,648
Quebec 65,258 59,362 42,337 46,383
Northern Ontario 2,523 2,912 4,041  3,226
Prairie 32,668 40,794 55,808 41,936
Pacific 74,113 92,376 122,449 92,046
Total SRPOE 181,786 202,610 232,192 196,239
Total National Land Border 8,301,504 9,201,465 9,535,605 9,854,749
% of National Land Border Commercial Releases 2.2% 2.2% 2.4% 2.0%

Source: Data provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, February 2014

Not all SRPOEs process immigration requests, while others have seen significant increase in the demand for immigration processing.

Overall, approximately 2.0% of all immigration requests at the land border are processed at SRPOEs. Footnote 33 Given the lack of infrastructure (i.e. holding cells) and systems access, many immigration requests are not conducted at SRPOEs but are rather diverted to larger POEs, and thus increasing the demand for immigration processing at these larger POEs. Other SRPOEs are seeing an increase in immigration flag pole trafficFootnote 34, which results in pressures both on CBSA resources and on the United States Customs and Border Protection resources at the opposite POE in the United States. Immigration processing activities at 17 SRPOEs increased by 33.4% between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.Footnote 35 For example, at the port of Carway in the Prairie region, immigration processing increased by 56.4% between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013. In FY 2012–2013, 67.1% of all SRPOE immigration requests were processed at that POE.Footnote 36 The majority of those requests were work permits; Carway processed an average of 629 work permits each year between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.

There are many facility impediments to the consistent delivery of services at the SRPOEs and some will require significant infrastructure investments over the coming years.

Existing fixed infrastructure does not accommodate current and future border operations (due to issues such as inadequate space for detentions and examinations) at SRPOEs.Footnote 37 SRPOE facilities in several regions do not meet operational requirements for Doubling-up due to space limitations for officers added under the initiative.Footnote 38 Thirty-four SRPOEs that have been identified under the BtB SRPOE initiative have buildings more than 40 years old, with the oldest over 80 years old. This is beyond the expected service life of these structures and presents repeated maintenance issues and health and safety concerns.Footnote 39

Many locations have only one primary inspection lane, which halts processing activities should a more detailed examination be required. Also, there are a limited number of SRPOEs that have a booth in the primary inspection area, and thus officers are required to take the travellers’ documents inside the SRPOE in order to run queries or to phone another POE. Some SRPOEs are limited in their ability to process payments as there is no on-site credit card payment of duties and taxes. This ultimately increases the time it takes to process each traveller, sometimes significantly.Footnote 40 However, 8.1% of complaints initiated at SRPOEs between FY 2011–2012 and FY 2013–2014 were related to wait times, and a further 5.8% of complaints were related to general service at SRPOEs.Footnote 41

The CBSA will be investing $99 million over the next 5 years in SRPOEsFootnote 42 to address various infrastructure and officer health and safety issues at SRPOEs.

Numerous health issues have been identified at SRPOEs including high levels of radon gas, pests, inadequate electrical/ heating, ventilation, and air conditioning and lack of potable water.Footnote 43 At some SRPOE locations the primary and secondary inspection area does not provide a shelter from the elements. Due to the lack of PIL booths, signage and/or markings indicating where vehicles should stop at other SRPOEs, officers must either walk around the vehicle to process travellers, or take declarations from the passenger’s side of vehicles. The lack of infrastructure of some land ports (e.g. camera systems and interview/examination space) presents threats with respect to general safety and security of officers at these ports.Footnote 44 Other impediments include inadequate exterior lights and parking space. The remoteness of some SRPOEs presents a potential risk to officer health and safety due to the distance from law enforcement backup or medical services in the event of an emergency, and the lack of cell phone coverage in some areas. The Personal Alarm Security System radio system used at POEs has limited ability for port to port communication and cannot be used to communicate with other agencies.

Furthermore, a total of 105 Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) incidents were reported at SRPOEs between FY 2008–2009 and FY 2012–2013.Footnote 45 Only 6.7% of the incidents reported were related to infrastructure.Footnote 46 Between 2008 and 2012, 64 grievancesFootnote 47 and two work refusalsFootnote 48 related to OHS were initiated at SRPOEs, compared to 206 grievances and 25 work refusals related to OHS at other land border POEs over the same period.

In October 2013, the CBSA announced the Small Ports Infrastructure Replacement Initiative (SPIRI), which will replace infrastructure at those SRPOEs needing critical repairs prior to the implementation of BtB SRPOE recommendations. Footnote 49 The SPIRI has identified seven SRPOEs for replacement by November 2015Footnote 50, and an additional 12 land border SRPOEs for future replacement under the initiative.Footnote 51

The Small Ports Working Group (SPWG) is considering options for future SPROE operations, including rationalization of hours of operation, remote traveller processing, joint or co-located facilities with the United States Customs and Border Protection and alignment of plans for infrastructure investments.Footnote 52

Although Agency documents state that the infrastructure replacements will not interfere with the SPWG recommendations,Footnote 53 development of a strategy to coordinate planning between the SPWG, SPIRI and other implicated areas would align decision making and ensure effective investments are made at SRPOEs. Without infrastructure and technology enhancements, SRPOEs will not meet the CBSA’s strategic goals to implement the BtB and to modernize business processes.Footnote 54

Furthermore, in order to achieve the target capture rate of 100% for traveller’s entry information and support the deployment of handheld devices, the CBSA will increase network connectivity to 29 SRPOEs, enabling the installation of the Integrated Primary Inspection Line (IPIL) software.Footnote 55 This software is a crucial component to the Entry/Exit initiative; without it, the CBSA would be required to manually record travellers’ entries, which would in turn reduce the efficiency and accuracy of the data collected.Footnote 56 Network, technology and infrastructure upgrades will also be required at those sites identified for remote processing.Footnote 57

To what extent are travellers and/or goods entering Canada through SRPOEs in compliance with Canadian laws and are risks identified and mitigated at SRPOEs?

The CBSA continues to identify and intercept inadmissible people and goods at SRPOEs at approximately the same rates as at larger POEs.

Between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013, the average annual enforcement rateFootnote 58 relative to the volume of travellers processed was the same at SRPOEs as at the overall land border [*].Footnote 59 The average annual examination rateFootnote 60 at SRPOEs was also the same as at other land border POEs, however the percentage of resultant examinations was 1.3% higher at SRPOEs over the same period.Footnote 61

The rate of immigration enforcement relative to the volume of foreign nationals arriving at SRPOEs is same as at the overall land border. In FY 2012–2013, the immigration enforcement rate at SRPOEs and at all land border POEs was [*].Footnote 62 However, there are differences in the frequency and types of immigration enforcement at SRPOEs compared to the overall land border. For example, between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013 the average annual rate of issuance of inadmissibility reportsFootnote 63 was 10.4% lower at SRPOEs than at the land borderFootnote 64 and the rate of issuance of Allowed to Leave determinationsFootnote 65 11.3% higher at SRPOEs than at the land border.Footnote 66

[*]The overall number of enforcement actions at SRPOEs has increased by 55% between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.Footnote 67 [*]

[*]

[*] A previous evaluation found that interdiction is more consistent at POEs where BSOs have the ability to query travellers across multiple CBSA databases, and that POEs with IPIL had an average of 1.1% more resultant customs examinations than those without system access.Footnote 68

Almost two-thirds (65%) of the SRPOEs are Non-Terminal Offices (NTOs)Footnote 69 or offices where the CBSA does not accept electronic release or accounting data for commercial transactions. Sixteen (26.7%) SRPOEs have no access to the Accelerated Commercial Release Operations Support System onsite.Footnote 70 In FY 2012–2013, 38.1% of commercial releases at SRPOEs were released at NTOsFootnote 71 and the vast majority (96.5%) of these releases were conducted in the Prairie region.Footnote 72 Automation of NTOs and the implementation of eManifest would allow for full commercial processing at SRPOEs.Footnote 73 [*]

[*] The CBSA Enforcement Manual notes that any commercial shipments examined at land borders must be offloaded and reloaded at Designated Commercial Offices (DCO).Footnote 74 [*]

What, if any, impact has the Doubling-up initiative had on operations and operational supervision at SRPOEs?

Though there are no longer any work-alone situations at SRPOEs as a result of the Doubling-up initiative, there has been an impact on operational management and an increased demand for officers.

The Doubling-up initiativeFootnote 75 resulted in an increased need for BSOsFootnote 76 and for housing at some POEs.Footnote 77 As part of the initiative, 207 additional BSOs were required at 58 SRPOEsFootnote 78 and even though 203 officers had been hired as of July 2013Footnote 79 staffing remains a challenge at some SRPOEs.Footnote 80 There are management and officer concerns of the challenges faced by SRPOEs in meeting policies in place. For example, offering the annual recertification required under the arming policy to BSOs at SRPOEs is challenging as they have a small number of staff and because shifts must be backfilled. As well, Superintendents are required to review all seizures within five working days and, when they are present at the time of the seizure, to complete a narrative report used to support significant seizures or prosecution. However, the Doubling-up initiative has increased the ratio of BSOs to Superintendents at SRPOEs.Footnote 81 As of April 2013, the ratio of BSOs to Superintendents varied from 12:1 in the Pacific region to 37:1 in the Prairie region.Footnote 82 Consequently assessing performance, providing leadership and support, and monitoring BSOs at SRPOEs where there is no superintendent onsite is challenging. Superintendents surveyed for the evaluation indicated that they are able to provide more timely information and guidance to BSOs at their home POEs (96%) rather than BSOs that they supervised remotely (79%).

As of February 2014, more than one-third of BSOs at SRPOEs had less than five years of service.Footnote 83 At 12 of the SRPOEs, more than half of positions were occupied by new recruits.Footnote 84 Ten percent of new BSO recruits from the June 2013 cohort of the Officer Induction Training Program were placed at five of the SRPOEs.Footnote 85 BSOs at SRPOEs that infrequently process immigration requests or commercial shipments are consequently limited in their ability to further their knowledge and skills to process those types of requests.Footnote 86

4. Demonstration of Efficiency and Economy

Are services at SRPOEs delivered efficiently and cost-effectively?

Overall spending at the SRPOEs has increased since FY 2009–2010, although there was a slight decrease in the cost to deliver services in FY 2012–2013 compared to FY 2011–2012. Moreover, existing service levels and policy requirements at SRPOEs impede the Agency’s ability to achieve savings without the use of technology or closing POEs.

In FY 2012–2013, the CBSA spent $34.8 million to deliver border services at SRPOEsFootnote 87 and $4.5 million for the operation and maintenance of the related facilities (Exhibit 4 and 5). Additionally, the CBSA spent $9.5 million on major capital projects at SRPOEs during the same period (Exhibit 6). This included the replacement of 3 SRPOEs in the Prairie region.Footnote 88 There was a slight increase in the cost of overtime from the $6.1 million reported in FY 2011–2012. The average annual expenditures at each SRPOE between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013 ranged from a low of $132,231 to $1.6 million.Footnote 89 In general, expenditures were positively correlated with traveller volume, however there were some exceptions. For example, one SRPOE cost $1.0 million and processed 54,596 travellers on average, while another SRPOE cost $357,064 and processed 86,787 travellers on average during the same period.Footnote 90

Exhibit 4: Regional and national salary and O&M expendituresFootnote 91 at SRPOEs,
FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013.

Region FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013
Regular Salary OT Salary O&M Total
Atlantic $5,255,818 $5,476,017 $5,694,755 $4,561,558 $857,755 $121,015 $5,540,328
Northern Ontario $1,308,074 $1,602,113 $1,594,086 $1,166,710 $281,081 $46,355 $1,494,146
Pacific $5,868,067 $6,779,204 $6,656,504 $5,277,770 $1,118,647 $477,197 $6,873,614
Prairies $10,450,885 $11,091,457 $12,561,876 $10,055,327 $2,113,787 $222,593 $12,391,707
Quebec $8,415,072 $9,371,802 $8,515,978 $6,188,353 $2,027,502 $260,300 $8,476,155
National $31,297,916 $34,320,593 $35,023,199 $27,249,718 $6,398,772 $1,127,460 $34,775,950

Source: Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014, provided by the Comptrollership Branch on February 3, 2014, Consolidated Management Reporting System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit on February 27, 2014

Exhibit 5: Regional and national infrastructure expendituresFootnote 92at SRPOEs,
FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013.

Region FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013
Atlantic $218,000 $320,797 $309,336 $336,000
Northern Ontario $124,623 $130,109 $142,141 $146,405
Pacific $996,701 $186,000 $1,406,325 $1,582,038
Prairie $965,968 $1,195,546 $2,161,795 $1,691,035
Quebec $635,170 $678,299 $738,328 $785,847
National $2,940,462 $2,510,751 $4,757,925 $4,541,325

Source: Corporate Administrative System, provided by the Comptrollership Branch on March 7, 2014

Exhibit 6: Major capital infrastructure expenditures at SRPOEs,
FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013.

Region FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013 Total
Covey Hill, QC $0 $240,692 $52,878 $0 $293,570
Stanstead, QC $177,985 $0 $0 $0 $177,985
Monchy, SK $0 $40,000 $1,200 $0 $41,200
Coulter, MB $0 $162,867 $1,543,530 $3,169,596 $4,875,992
Goodlands, MB $0 $162,867 $1,543,530 $3,169,596 $4,875,992
Lyleton, MB $0 $162,867 $1,543,530 $3,169,596 $4,875,992
Cascade, BC $30,000 $0 $0 $4,890 $34,890
National $207,985 $769,292 $4,684,667 $9,513,677 $15,175,621

Source: Corporate Administrative System, provided by the Comptrollership Branch on March 27, 2014

The total annual expendituresFootnote 93 of the Doubling-up initiative are expected to be $37.1 million on an ongoing basis (Exhibit 7). Expenditures for the initiative have exceeded the $30.5 million initially allocated. Even though additional funding has been obtained through internal re-profiling and external funding requestsFootnote 94 there is an expected deficit for FY 2013–2014Footnote 95 if additional funding is not secured. This includes funding for previously unfunded capital expenditures and the costs of increasing the management ranks by 35 positions (chiefs and superintendents) in order to effectively manage the increased workforce.Footnote 96

Exhibit 7: Budget and expendituresFootnote 97 for the Doubling-up initiative,
FY 2009–2010 to FY 2013–2014.

  FY 2009–2010 FY 2010–2011 FY 2011–2012 FY 2012–2013 FY 2013–2014 Ongoing
National Budget $33,054,000 $37,354,000 $33,266,000 $39,205,000 $30,470,000 $30,470,000
National Expenditures $31,951,000 $37,356,000 $38,513,000 $38,574,000 $38,574,625 $37,058,000
Regional Budget Allocation $26,308,296 $33,070,193 $34,653,802 $34,909,201 Not available Not available

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Doubling-up Allocations, Resource Management Unit, March 3, 2014; Doubling-up Pressures, Resource Management Unit, October 2013; Doubling-up Project Transition and Closure Report, Resource Management Unit, March 2014

Many SRPOEs are staffed with the minimum number of officers needed to maintain two officers during operating hours. A 2010 report on resource allocation at SRPOEs found that nine to 12 officers per POE were required to comply with the Doubling-up policyFootnote 98; however, 80% of SRPOEs had less than nine BSOs in April 2013.Footnote 99 The Doubling-up initiative has also resulted in additional costs to cover meal periods (since neither officer can be left alone to cover the lunch break of the other and backfills) as well as to cover absences due to vacation, illness and training. As of October 2013, doubling-up had been completed at 54 of the 58 SRPOEs identified under the Doubling-up initiative.Footnote 100

Furthermore, the Performance Measurement Framework for SRPOEs has not been finalized, which limits the evaluation ability to determine if the activities are delivered efficiently or cost-effectively. In addition to the current draft indicators, the framework would benefit from the addition of basic volumetric data to further the understanding of the SRPOEs environment and as such, contribute to effective decision making.

There is potential for cost savings should the remote traveller processing pilot be deemed successful and approved for implementation.

In May 2013 the Government of Canada announced a pilot of remote traveller processing at two SRPOEs: Piney, Manitoba and Morses Line, Quebec, in 2015.Footnote 101 During the pilot period, any Canadian citizen, U.S. citizen or permanent resident of Canada or the United States could enter Canada at Morses Line, QC using the remote traveller processing technology during specified hours, while Piney, MB would be restricted to only registered, pre-authorized users.Footnote 102 If the pilot is successful, remote  traveller processing may be implemented full-time at up to 19 POEs. This could support redeployment of resources to higher risk or higher volume POEs or enforcement teams. Footnote 103 Expenditures for the pilots were not available; however, the BtB SRPOE initiative is expected to cost $16.1 million (Exhibit 8).Footnote 104

[*] The expected savings at SRPOEs have not yet been identified, but would be dependent on the successful implementation of remote traveller processing and on the ongoing expenditures to automate those SRPOEs.Footnote 105

Exhibit 8: Estimated expenditures for the BtB SRPOE initiative,
FY 2013–2014 to FY 2016–2017.

  FY 2013–2014 FY 2014–2015 FY 2015–2016 FY 2016–2017 Total
Total Expenditures $2,639,808 $9,201,360 $3,912,936 $359,251 $16,113,355

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for the Small and Remote Ports of Entry Initiative, April 2013

Are there any alternatives to delivering services at SRPOEs while still achieving program objectives?

The delivery of integrated border services remains a challenge at SRPOEs. Rationalizing the level of services would increase effectiveness and efficiency.

Currently, there is no service delivery framework for SRPOEs that could be used to rationalize SRPOE locations or to assess the border services required at each SRPOE based on volume, traffic patterns and/or the availability of alternate service locations. SRPOEs have large variations in the hours of operation, annual traveller processing and commercial release volumes, distance to alternative POEs, and proximity to towns and cities. There are significant regional differences in types of services (immigration and commercial processing) at SRPOEs and though adjusting the services delivered would further mitigate risks, the costs of delivery would remain the same.

The CBSA has a series of initiatives that offer alternative delivery options. For example, the Prairie region restricts the type of commercial traffic that can be processed at SRPOEs in order to mitigate the risk of commercial processing at POEs that lack the infrastructure to perform meaningful examinations.Footnote 106 The Extended Release Privileges (ERP) list is in place at all of the 13 SRPOEs in the Southern Manitoba District.Footnote 107 Applicants to the ERP list must submit a letter to a DCO that includes information on the importer, the goods, and the broker (if applicable), as well as the reason for the request.Footnote 108 There were 299 valid ERP permits at SRPOEs in the Southern Manitoba District in March 2014.Footnote 109

By comparison, in 2009 the CBSA conducted a review of its core services at airports thus, providing the Agency with a guidance framework to rationalize services and standards for facilities at airports. The objectives of the review were to: develop service delivery approaches that respond to the changing demands and contexts of the travel industry; establish transparent criteria for use in determining which services, locations and hours of operation should be delivered; and establish a solid methodology to assess requests for new and enhanced passenger clearance services. The service level criteria for the review were the annual international passenger volume, distance to the nearest CBSA service location and frequency of arriving international flights.

In light of these findings it is recommended that:

Recommendation 1: The Vice-President of the Programs Branch, in consultation with the Vice-President of Operations Branch, develop criteria to determine the types of services offered at SRPOEs and measure performance.

5. Conclusion

Overall, the activities conducted at Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOEs) are aligned with the CBSA and the Government of Canada priorities and roles and responsibilities. Furthermore, given the vastness of the country and the distance between some SRPOEs there is continued need to offer integrated border services at these locations. Identified facilities issues do, however, impede on the CBSA’s ability to effectively process travellers and commercial traffic into Canada and ultimately on the CBSA’s capacity to mitigate risks. There are plans to address these issues through the replacement of critical SRPOE infrastructure under the Small Ports Infrastructure Replacement Initiative by 2015 and the implementation of recommendations developed by the Small Ports Working Group.

To ensure the optimization of services and related costs, the CBSA could also explore alternative service delivery models for the provision of integrated border services at small and remote locations.

A more detailed discussion of the key findings, recommendations and management response and action plan resulting from this evaluation can be found in the Executive Summary.

Appendix A – Acronyms and Abbreviations

BSO
Border services officer
BtB
Beyond the Border Action Plan
CBSA
Canada Border Services Agency
DCO
Designated Commercial Office
ERP
Extended Release Privileges
FY
Fiscal Year
IPIL
Integrated Primary Inspection Line
NTO
Non-Terminal Office
POE
Port of entry
SPIRI
Small Ports Infrastructure Replacement Initiative
SPWG
Small Ports Working Group
SRPOE
Small and/or Remote Port of Entry

Appendix B – Program Overview

Key Stakeholders

CBSA Stakeholders

Programs Branch

The Border Programs Directorate develops and manages policies and procedures that regulate the movement of commercial goods and travellers into and out of Canada at the land border at SRPOEs, to ensure the health, safety and security of all Canadians and that the programs delivered at SRPOEs advance the economy without compromising public safety. In addition, the Directorate develops, implements, maintains and reports on performance at SRPOEs, to ensure compliance with policies, processes, procedures, regulations and legislation. Finally, the Directorate provides functional direction to SRPOEs and consults with Other Government Departments and external clients with regards to the processing of commercial goods and travellers and their goods at SRPOEs.

The Border Programs Modernization Division under the Border Programs Directorate manages the Small and Remote Ports of Entry initiative under the Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan. The Traveller Border Programs Division provides functional direction to all POEs, including SRPOEs on traveller processing matters. The Commercial Border Programs Division provides functional direction to all POEs, including SRPOEs on commercial processing matters. In this regard, these Divisions consult with internal and external stakeholders, central agencies, and OGDs on policies, regulations, legislation and systems under their area of responsibility. These Divisions develop, implement, maintain and monitor performance and quality assurance frameworks, verification and compliance strategies and service standards for programs delivered at all POEs.

Operations Branch

The Border Operations Directorate is responsible for supporting day-to-day SRPOE operations, and overseeing service delivery in the processing of people and goods at SRPOEs. The Directorate provides support and analysis on operational SRPOE priorities and is responsible for monitoring, assessing and reporting on operational performance necessary in determining priorities, goals and resource allocations at SRPOEs. The Directorate works with partners and stakeholders to identify means of improving operational service delivery and border security in support of legitimate travel and trade at SRPOEs; and ensures that an operational perspective from SRPOEs is reflected in existing and proposed plans, design and goals within the Agency and from partner departments. Additionally, the Corporate and Program Services Division under this Directorate, is responsible for the Doubling-up initiative.

Regional Operations, under the direction of Regional Directors General, are responsible for the delivery of land traveller and commercial processing services at SRPOEs.

Other CBSA Branches

Other branches collect information on, or provide support to SRPOEs:

  • The Information, Science and Technology Branch designs, develops and delivers solutions through engineering and scientific analysis in support of advanced border management programs and operations, including any remote processing technology that may be introduced at SRPOEs.
  • The Human Resources Branch develops and implements human resources policies, and coordinates training for BSOs conducting traveller and commercial processing at SRPOEs. The Arming Division is accountable for directing the process of arming authorized CBSA officers and providing a management framework related to arming at SRPOEs.
  • The Comptrollership Branch is responsible for providing services in the areas of financial administration, infrastructure, sustainable development, environmental operations, and contracting and procurement management for SRPOEs. The Infrastructure and Environmental Operations Directorate coordinates the Agency’s Long-Term Fixed Infrastructure Plan with initiatives in the U.S. and delivers facilities and operational space in support of program delivery at all POEs, including SRPOEs. As such, the Directorate has been involved in infrastructure improvements resulting from the Doubling-up initiative and will be responsible for implementing any changes to the existing infrastructure at SRPOEs resulting from the work of the SRPOE initiative and SPWG. The Directorate is also the Office of Primary Interest for the Small Ports Infrastructure Replacement Initiative.

Other Government Department Stakeholders

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)

The RCMP works with the CBSA on a wide range of initiatives. While the CBSA has responsibility for activities and services at the border, the RCMP is responsible for the border between POEs. In addition, BSOs at SRPOEs often call on the services of the RCMP, particularly as it relates to offences under the Criminal Code of Canada.

Bi-lateral Partners

United States Customs and Border Protection (U.S. CBP)

The U.S. CBP under the Department of Homeland Security is responsible for securing the U.S. side of the border and facilitating lawful international trade and travel into that country, while enforcing U.S. laws and regulations. The U.S. CBP is working with the CBSA on the BtB Small and Remote Ports of Entry initiative and is a member of the SPWG.

External Stakeholders

Ports of entry are often important entities in the small and/or remote communities in which they are located and they often facilitate access to essential services such as grocery stores, gas stations, and/or emergency services. Local municipal and business leaders have an interest in ensuring that their communities continue to have access to these types of services.

Appendix C – Logic Model

In consultation with key CBSA stakeholders, a logic model was developed, around which a project plan for the Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry was drafted. The logic model presented is a visual representation that links what the Program does (activities) with what the Program produces (outputs) and what the Program intends to achieve (outcomes) (Exhibit C-1). It also was the basis for developing the evaluation framework, which provided a roadmap for conducting this evaluation.

Exhibit C-1: SRPOE Logic Model

  • 1. Program Mandate: Intercept people and/or goods that are inadmissible to Canada and to process legitimate people and/or goods seeking entry into Canada within established service standards.
  • 2. Inputs: Legislation, Regulations and Directives, Intelligence, Funding (FTEs & O&M), Internal Services (i.e. ISTB, Controllership, HR).
  • 3. Activities:
    • 3.1 Development & Maintenance
      • 3.1.1 Monitor and assess program statistics and related Recourse decisions.
        • Outputs: Process and performance monitoring, frameworks & program statistics (leads to immediate outcome 4.1 and 4.3).
      • 3.1.2 Develop, maintain, and provide guidance on legislation, regulations, policies, manuals, training programs & tools.
        • Outputs: Legislation, regulations, MCs, policies, manuals, SOPs, training courses and available tools (leads to immediate outcome 4.2).
    • 3.2 Program Delivery
      • 3.2.1 Conduct primary and secondary traveller commercial processing.
        • Outputs: Customs and admissibility decisions, Release or seizure/arrests of goods and/or people (leads to immediate outcome 4.2 and 4.3).
      • 3.2.2 Record exam results/ input information into system
        • Outputs: Admissibility and seizure reports (leads to immediate outcome 4.1).
    • 3.3 Communication
      • 3.3.1 Engage and collaborate with internal and external stakeholders and the public.
        • Outputs: Communication materials, Agreements and information, Meetings, conferences, committees & working groups (leads to immediate outcomes 4.4).
  • 4. Immediate Outcomes:
    • 4.1 Risks are being mitigated (leads to intermediate outcomes 5.1).
    • 4.2 Accurate and consistent interpretation and application of relevant legislation, policies and procedures (leads to intermediate outcome 5.1).
    • 4.3 Continuous service is provided to small and remote border communities (leads to intermediate outcomes 5.1 and 5.2).
    • 4.4 Enhanced information sharing & collaboration with internal and external stakeholders and the public (leads to intermediate outcomes 5.2).
  • 5. Intermediate Outcomes:
    • 5.1 CBSA officers are not at risk of any known health and safety incidents (leads to ultimate outcome 6).
    • 5.2 Travellers and/or goods are in compliance with Canadian laws (leads to ultimate outcome 6).
  • 6. Ultimate Outcome: People and/or goods that are inadmissible to Canada are intercepted at ports of entry; Legitimate people and/or goods entering Canada at a land port of entry are processed within established service standards (leads to strategic outcome 7).
  • 7. Strategic Outcome: International trade and travel is facilitated across Canada’s border and Canada’s population is protected from border-related risks.

Appendix D – Evaluation Methodology

The focus of this evaluation was on 60 Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry (SRPOEs). Historically, SRPOEs were one-person ports of entry (POEs); however, as a result of the Arming and Doubling-up initiatives in 2006, these ports have subsequently been doubled-up.Footnote 1 The CBSA regions indicated that there are 75 SRPOEs across Canada based on the following criteria:

  • Minimal commercial and/or traveller traffic
    • Fewer than 200,000 travellers per year (with a few exceptions)
    • Fewer than 15,000 commercial entries per year (with a few exceptions)
  • Minimum staffing levels
    • Doubled-up ports
    • Less than 15 full-time BSOs
  • Reduced port hours
    • Non 24/7 POEs (with a few exceptions, for example if they operated with one BSO prior to Doubling-up)
  • Significant distance from dense population centres
  • Significant distance from major transportation networks

Sixty SRPOEs were selected from the list of 75 SRPOEs for the purpose of this evaluation based on the availability of consistent and comparable data to larger POEs (see Appendix E for further information).

The evaluation collected both qualitative and quantitative data to address the evaluation issues using the following methodologies:

Document and Literature Review

To understand the design and delivery of the Agency’s services at SRPOEs, the evaluation reviewed documents including working group and committee reports, planning documents, organizational charts, legislation, policies, procedures, training materials, manuals, previous evaluation studies and audits, media reports, correspondence and minutes from meetings and consultations. In addition, a literature review regarding the design, delivery and performance of remote technology in the U.S. was conducted for comparison purposes. The evaluation also reviewed publications and documents on the relationship between SRPOEs and the local communities and economies.

Operational and Financial Data Analysis

The evaluation examined operational and financial data, trends, volumes, types and number of enforcement actions, program budgets and expenditures from FY 2009–2010 to FY 2012–2013 to assess the effectiveness and efficiency of program activities. In addition, relevant budget and expenditure data from the Doubling-up initiative and infrastructure investments at SRPOEs, both planned and actuals, were also reviewed.

Key Stakeholders Interviews

The evaluation conducted a total of 26 one-on-one and group interviews to gather information on the design, delivery and performance of the SRPOEs from the perspectives of different stakeholders. These included 12 interviews with CBSA management and staff at National Headquarters and 14 interviews with CBSA regional management and staff.

Site Visits

Site visits were used to gather regional data, to observe regional processes and to conduct interviews with regional management staff and superintendents and BSOs at SRPOEs. The evaluation team visited a total of 12 SRPOEs in the Prairie, Quebec and Atlantic regions. The sites chosen within each of these regions were selected on the basis of: traveller volumes, in order to ensure a mix of POEs with small and medium volumes; whether the POE has access to CBSA query databases; and recommendations from program and regional management.

Survey

An online survey was conducted of superintendents who supervise BSOs at SRPOEs, which allowed for a comparison of the realities and the challenges associated with supervision of staff that work in other locations, and with ensuring that the delivery of services and activities at SRPOEs is meeting operational requirements and the outcomes of identified in the logic model. A distinction was made between those superintendents who supervise BSOs that work at the same POE as themselves and those who do not have their offices at the same POE as the BSOs they supervise.

Appendix E – List of Small and/or Remote Ports of Entry

Region Port of Entry
Atlantic Centreville
Atlantic Forest City
Atlantic Fosterville
Atlantic Gillespie
Atlantic Grand Falls
Atlantic River De Chute
Atlantic St. Croix
Atlantic Bloomfield
Quebec Chartierville
Quebec Clarenceville
Quebec Covey Hill
Quebec Frelighsburg
Quebec Glen Sutton
Quebec Hereford Road
Quebec Highwater
Quebec Pohénégamook
Quebec Saint-Just-de-Bretenières
Quebec Stanstead ( Route 247 Beebe)
Quebec Sainte-Aurélie
Quebec St. Pamphile
Quebec Woburn
Quebec East Pinnacle
Quebec Morses Line
Prairie Aden
Prairie Carway
Prairie Del Bonita
Prairie Wild Horse
Prairie Cartwright
Prairie Coulter
Prairie Crystal City
Prairie Goodlands
Prairie Gretna
Prairie Lena
Prairie Lyleton
Prairie Piney
Prairie Snowflake
Prairie South Junction
Prairie Windygates
Prairie Winkler
Prairie Carievale
Prairie Climax
Prairie Coronach
Prairie Estevan
Prairie Monchy
Prairie Northgate
Prairie Oungre
Prairie Torquay
Prairie West Poplar River
Prairie Willow Creek
Pacific Beaver Creek
Pacific Cascade
Pacific Carson
Pacific Chopaka
Pacific Fraser
Pacific Midway
Pacific Nelway
Pacific Pleasant Camp
Pacific Stewart
Pacific Waneta
Northern Ontario Rainy River

Notes - Executive Summary

Footnotes

Footnote 1

The costs to deliver border services include salary (regular and overtime) and maintenance (O&M). Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014.

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Footnote 2

Source: Treasury Board Policy Suite, http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/pol/doc-eng.aspx?id=15024, accessed October 16, 2012.

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Footnote 3

Source: Whole-of-government framework, June 20, 2013, http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/ppg-cpr/descript-eng.aspx, accessed February 27, 2014.

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Footnote 4

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 5

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Port of Entry Capacity Check, Southern Manitoba District, May 2012; Corporate Administrative System, Demographics and Workforce Analysis Unit, February 2014.

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Footnote 6

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014.

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Notes

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, 2012–13 Departmental Performance Report, accessed February 10, 2014.

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Footnote 2

Sixty ports were selected from a list of 75 SRPOEs identified by the regions for the purpose of this evaluation. Additional details are provided in Appendix D.

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Footnote 3

Source: Section 11 of the Customs Act.

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Footnote 4

Source: Sections 16 and 18 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

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Footnote 5

Source: Section 12 of the Customs Act.

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Footnote 6

The costs include salary (regular and overtime) and maintenance (O&M). Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014.

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Footnote 7

Source: Treasury Board Policy Suite (http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/pol/doc-eng.aspx?id=15024) (Accessed October 16, 2012).

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Footnote 8

This evaluation provides current information on the number and nature of complaints, the number and type of enforcement actions, the proximity to the nearest Designated Commercial Office, the yearly expenditures, and the year to year traveller volumes at SRPOEs.

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Footnote 9

The CBSA initiatives under the Perimeter Vision and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan are referred to as Beyond the Border (BtB).

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Footnote 10

Source: Section 5 of the Canada Border Services Agency Act.

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Footnote 11

Source: Whole-of-government framework, June 20, 2013, http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/ppg-cpr/descript-eng.aspx, accessed February 27, 2014.

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Footnote 12

The joint Canada-U.S. Small Ports Working Group was established in 2010 to ensure better communication and to facilitate joint SRPOE decisions between Canada and the U.S and subsequently reconvened after the announcement of the Beyond the Border Action Plan in November 2011. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Small Port Working Group: Initial Results and Path Forward, 2010.

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Footnote 13

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Project Charter for the Small and Remote Ports of Entry Initiative, April 2013.

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Footnote 14

Source: Government of Canada, Speech from the Throne, October 2013.

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Footnote 15

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, data provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, January 2014.

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Footnote 16

Daily commercial release volumes were calculated by the evaluation team. Sources: Canada Border Service Agency Wiki, Port Profiles, accessed on July 12, 2013; Directory of CBSA Offices, Accessed May 2013; Consolidated Management Reporting System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, February 27, 2014;

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Footnote 17

Sources: Cascadia in Comparative Perspectives, Brunet‐Jailly, E. , Canadian Political Science Review Vol. 2(2) June 2008; Canada-United States Border Communities: What the People Have to Say, 2013; Northern Border Strategy, United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS), June 2012.

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Footnote 18

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 19

Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Alternative Service Delivery Fact Sheet, Strategic Review; Core Service Request Template – Gillespie; Bloomfield Reduction of Hours Business Case; Forest City Reduction of Hours Business Case; Fosterville Reduction of Hours Business Case; Email from the District Director, Okanagan and Kootenay District; Monticello-Bloomfield Small Port Working Group Port Action Worksheet.

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Footnote 20

There are 117 land-border ports of entry. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Directory of CBSA Offices, http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/do-rb/services/hwyb-autof-eng.html, accessed January 22, 2014.

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Footnote 21

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014.

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Footnote 22

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014.

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Footnote 23

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014.

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Footnote 24

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014. Revenue data was not available at SRPOEs.

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Footnote 25

Other conveyances (rail and aircraft) were excluded from the total number of conveyances processed. Daily Traveller and Conveyance Volumes were not available for FY 2009–2010, for SRPOEs in the Pacific and Northern Ontario regions for all FY, for SRPOEs in the Atlantic and Quebec region during FY 2010–2011 and FY 2011–2012, and for SRPOEs in the Prairie region during FY 2010–2011.

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Footnote 26

This does not include the number of other conveyances (e.g. trains and aircraft) processed at SRPOEs or at other land border POEs.

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Footnote 27

The current threshold for reporting significant events to the Border Operations Centre (BOC) includes border wait times greater than one hour. The CBSA tracks and reports border wait time information for 26 large ports of entry but does not track or report on border wait times at SRPOEs. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Event Management Process - Info. for Program Evaluation (undated), received October 2013, program documentation, Performance Reporting Unit, received February 2014.

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Footnote 28

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, CBSA Today, August 2013.

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Footnote 29

20 events were reported at two of the 60 sampled SRPOEs between May 2010 and May 2013. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Border Operations Centre High Profile Event Log, May 2010 - May 2013.

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Footnote 30

The evaluation was unable to determine the total amount of revenues collected for commercial releases at SRPOEs.

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Footnote 31

2009–2010 was chosen as the start of the data collection period due to the global financial crisis in 2008 and the consequent decrease in the volume of shipments entering Canada in 2009–2010. Sources: A Study of the Crisis in the Automotive Sector in Canada, Report of the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology, March 2009 and 2010–2011 Report on Plans and Priorities, Canada Border Services Agency, November 2009.

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Footnote 32

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014.

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Footnote 33

Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Data Warehouse System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in March 2014.

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Footnote 34

‘Flag poling’ is a term that describes the process of a foreign national entering (or being refused entry to) the United States from Canada for a brief period, usually for the purpose of immediately returning to Canada to apply for a work permit, study permit, visitor record, temporary resident permit or to be landed as a permanent resident (PR) at POE. The Canada Border Services Agency is legislatively bound to process applications received at the POE when a traveller is seeking to enter Canada.

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Footnote 35

Data for 43 of the 60 sampled SRPOEs was not available

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Footnote 36

Data for 43 of the 60 sampled SRPOEs was not available

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Footnote 37

Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Operations Branch Risk Profile 2010-12; POE Traveller PMT Risk Profile May 2013 - Final; POE Commercial PMT Risk Profile May 2013- Final.

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Footnote 38

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Status of Small & Remote Ports ‘A Prairie region Sample’, January 2013; Port of Entry Capacity Check, Montérégie District (Quebec region), November 2012; Port of Entry Capacity Check, Southern Manitoba District (Prairie region), May 2012; Survey of Small and/Remote Port of Entry Superintendents, November 2013.

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Footnote 39

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Project Charter for the SRPOEs Initiative, April 2013.

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Footnote 40

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 41

The majority of complaints initiated (51.7%) were related to officer or employee conduct. Some complaints were related to multiple issues. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Complaints database, February 2014.

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Footnote 42

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, The Bricks and Mortar of Border Modernization, Leadership Session Presentation, April 2014.

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Footnote 43

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Status of Small & Remote Ports ‘A Prairie region Sample’, January 2013.

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Footnote 44

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, 2012–2013 CBSA National Border Risk Assessment, June 2012.

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Footnote 45

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Incident reports database, Occupational Health and Safety Division and the regions, December 2013.

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Footnote 46

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Incident reports database, Occupational Health and Safety Division and the regions, December 2013.

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Footnote 47

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System (based on data from the Corporate Administrative System), Human Resources, November 2013.

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Footnote 48

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Officer Health and Safety Division register, March 2014.

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Footnote 49

Sources: Improving our Infrastructure – Upgrading Small Ports, CBSA Intranet, October 2013; Status of Small & Remote Ports ‘A Prairie region Sample’, January 2013.

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Footnote 50

The ports that will be replaced by 2015 [*].

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Footnote 51

[*].

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Footnote 52

[*].

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Footnote 53

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Small Ports Infrastructure Short Term Replacement Initiative -Finalized Design and Next Steps, May 2013.

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Footnote 54

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 55

There is a pilot of handheld IPIL devices launching in 2014 at two SRPOEs in the Prairie region, Winkler and Windygates, and a total of 42 SRPOEs are slated to receive handheld technology under the Entry/Exit initiative by 2015–2016. One SRPOE will also receive a license plate reader. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Entry/Exit initiative Project Charter, February 2013; Clean Site List Breakdown Handhelds, February 2014.

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Footnote 56

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Entry/Exit initiative Project Charter, February 2013; Wireless Handhelds, Concept of Operations, February 2013.

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Footnote 57

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 58

The enforcement rate is defined as the ratio of traveller enforcement actions (not including immigration) to total traveller volume expressed as a percentage.

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Footnote 59

The enforcement actions used to calculate the enforcement rate were prohibited goods, notices of determination (K27), child pornography, forced payments, notices of ascertained forfeiture (K100), general receipts (K24), ICES traveller seizures, and ICES drug seizures. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, Integrated Customs Enforcement System and Prohibited Importations Unit, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, March 6, 2014

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Footnote 60

The examination rate is defined as the ratio of customs examinations to total traveller volume expressed as a percentage.

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Footnote 61

The difference in resultant examination rates was not significant. Resultant examinations are defined as the ratio of traveller enforcement actions (not including immigration) to customs examinations expressed as a percentage.

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Footnote 62

Enforcement data for 32 of the 60 sampled SRPOEs was not available in the system. The immigration enforcement rate is defined as the ratio of immigration enforcement actions to total foreign national volume expressed as a percentage. On average [*] enforcement actions were issued annually between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013. The number of detentions on entry was not available. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Field Operations Support System, Citizenship and Immigration, Canada Data Warehouse System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, March 6, 2014.

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Footnote 63

An officer who is of the opinion that a permanent resident or a foreign national who is in Canada is inadmissible may prepare a report setting out the relevant facts under section 44 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Minister’s delegates will review all reports and may issue removal orders or refer the reports to the Immigration Division. Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Enforcement Manual, June 2013.

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Footnote 64

Sources: Citizenship and Immigration Canada Data Warehouse System, Field Operations Support System, Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, March 6, 2014.

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Footnote 65

A BSO may determine a person to be inadmissible and allow them to withdraw their application to enter and leave Canada pursuant to section 42 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations if no inadmissibility report is prepared or transmitted. Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Enforcement Manual, June 2013.

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Footnote 66

Allowed to leave determinations comprised 91.4%, inadmissibility reports comprised another 8%, direct backs (0.4%) and notices of arrest (0.1%) of the average annual immigration enforcement actions between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013.

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Footnote 67

On average 38 enforcement actions were conducted annually between FY 2009–2010 and FY 2012–2013. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, Integrated Customs Enforcement System and Prohibited Importations Unit, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, March 6, 2014.

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Footnote 68

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Traveller Processing Program in the Highway and Rail Modes of Transportation, Evaluation Study, May 2013.

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Footnote 69

39 of the 60 sampled SRPOEs are considered non-terminal offices (NTOs) and do not offer electronic accounting or release Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Directory of CBSA Offices, http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/do-rb/services/hwyb-autof-eng.html, accessed March 5, 2014.

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Footnote 70

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, NTO ACROSS Access for eManifest, January 2013

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Footnote 71

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014.

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Footnote 72

Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, received from the Performance Reporting Unit in February 2014; Canada Border Services Agency, Non-Terminal Office Operations Branch Executive Committee eManifest status update, January 2013.

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Footnote 73

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Non-Terminal Office Operations Branch Executive Committee eManifest status update, January 2013.

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Footnote 74

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Enforcement Manual, Part 4, Chapter 4.

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Footnote 75

The Doubling-up Policy, which came into effect in September 2008, specified that “no CBSA officers be required to work alone at a CBSA office where officers carry out duties that require enforcement of CBSA program legislation or the Criminal Code or that may lead to the enforcement of such legislation.” Fraser (Pacific) and Rainy River (Northern Ontario) are not identified for doubling up under the policy. Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Doubling-up Policy for CBSA Ports of Entry; Canada Border Services Agency, 2007–2012 Multi Year Plan, October 2013.

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Footnote 76

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Evaluation of CBSA Officer Recruitment and Port of Entry Recruit Training (POERT), November 2011.

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Footnote 77

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Port of Entry Traveller Program Management Table Risk Profile May 2013 – Final.

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Footnote 78

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, 2007–2012 Multi Year Plan, October 2013.

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Footnote 79

Four officers are still required at four SRPOEs in the Quebec region and are expected to be hired by January 2015. In the interim, doubling-up requirements are being met through the use of staff assignments and overtime. Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, 2007–2012 Multi Year Plan, October 2013; Canada Border Services Agency, Doubling-up Project Transition and Closure Report, March 2014.

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Footnote 80

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Prairie Region Year-End Review, June 2012.

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Footnote 81

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Port of Entry Capacity Check, Southern Manitoba District, May 2012.

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Footnote 82

Data was not available for Aden, AB in the Prairie region. Calculated by the Program Evaluation Division using data for active employees only, provided by the Demographics and Workforce Analysis Unit, February 2014.

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Footnote 83

Data was not available for Aden in the Prairie region. The calculation includes only active employees. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, February 1, 2014.

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Footnote 84

The calculation includes only active employees. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, November 1, 2013.

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Footnote 85

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Officer Induction Training Program 1 Participant List, June 2013.

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Footnote 86

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, 2013–2015 National Border Risk Assessment, May 2013.

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Footnote 87

The costs include salary (regular and overtime) and operating & maintenance (O&M). Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014.

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Footnote 88

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, March 27, 2014

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Footnote 89

The costs include salary (regular and overtime), maintenance (O&M) and facilities maintenance. Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Corporate Administrative System, January 31, 2014, provided by the Comptrollership branch on February 3, 2014 and March 7, 2014.

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Footnote 90

The first SRPOE processes travellers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and the other does not. Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, Consolidated Management Reporting System, provided by the Performance Reporting Unit, February 27, 2014; CBSA List of Offices, accessed May 2013

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Footnote 91

Expenditures include salary (regular and overtime) and operating & maintenance (O&M) costs.

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Footnote 92

Expenditures include and operational (e.g. cleaning, grounds upkeep), maintenance (e.g. repairs and capital projects), utilities and administration costs. Only the projected expenditures were available for the Atlantic, Northern Ontario, Prairie and Quebec regions in FY 2012–2013.

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Footnote 93

The amount allocated to the regions for the Doubling-up initiative, is not exclusive to SRPOEs.

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Footnote 94

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Doubling-up Pressures, Resource Management Unit, October 2013.

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Footnote 95

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Doubling-up Pressures, Resource Management Unit, October 2013.

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Footnote 96

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Front Line Service Delivery, January 2011; Doubling-up Project Transition and Closure Report, March 2014.

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Footnote 97

Amounts include regular salary and operating & maintenance (O&M) costs. Regional costs do not include the salary and O&M amounts for Doubling-up regional coordinators.

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Footnote 98

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Optimizing resource allocation at small ports of entry, March 2010.

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Footnote 99

47 SRPOEs had 1-8 full-time equivalents (FTEs), 11 SRPOEs had 9-12 FTEs, and 1 SRPOE had more than 12 FTEs. Data was not available for Aden, AB in the Prairie region. Calculated by the Program Evaluation Division using data for active employees only, provided by the Demographics and Workforce Analysis Unit, February 2014.

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Footnote 100

Source: Canada Border Services Agency Doubling-up Pressures, Resource Management Unit, October 2013.

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Footnote 101

Sources: Canada Border Services Agency, ‘Canada announces remote traveller pilot project to extend service hours at Morses Line, Quebec port of entry’, ‘Canada announces remote traveller processing pilot project to extend service hours at Piney, Manitoba port of entry’, May 2013.

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Footnote 102

During the Remote Processing pilot period, remote processing would only be available outside of current POE operating hours. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 103

During the pilot period, no commercial processing would be conducted remotely. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 104

Reusable expenditures include the development of technology components ($5.64 million) and program and policy development for the small and remote ports initiative ($2.66 million). Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 105

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Business Case for Piloting Remote Technology, April 2013.

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Footnote 106

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Permit Ports presentation, October 2010.

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Footnote 107

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Extended Release Privileges Participant List, March 2014.

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Footnote 108

The application process may involve a risk assessment at the discretion of management, and the final approval is made by a Chief or Superintendent. Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Permit Ports presentation, October 2010.

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Footnote 109

Source: Canada Border Services Agency, Extended Release Privileges Participant List, March 2014.

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Notes - Appendices

Footnotes

Footnote 1

In 2006, the Government of Canada announced that the federal budget would provide $101M over two years to begin the process of providing CBSA officers with side-arms. The announcement also included the plan to hire 400 new permanent officers to address all work-alone situations. Subsequent to the announcement, the CBSA Doubling-Up Initiative was established to develop and implement a strategy to eliminate situations in which BSOs routinely worked alone.

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