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eNgineering, aRchitecture and Land Survey (NR) Group



June 2009


On April 22, 2009 an arbitral award was imposed on the Institute and Treasury Board, renewing the NR collective agreement, having expired on September 30, 2007.

Negotiations have been significantly impacted by the federal government imposing salary legislation via the Budget Implementation Act (2009), also known as Bill C-10, having taken effect on March 21, 2009; similar restrictions were also being considered by government in November 2008, in tandem with the Finance Minister’s “Economic Statement”.

Bill C-10 establishes maximum economic increases in the public service for a period of four years:

2007 = 2.3% increase
2008 = 1.5% increase
2009 = 1.5% increase
2010 = 1.5% increase

Further, Bill C-10 imposes caps on any benefit or allowance, i.e. recruitment and retention allowances, while maintained, cannot be increased.

Work Force Adjustment (WFA)

A revised WFA took effect for all PIPSC - Treasury Board Groups as of February 2009, thus the “revised WFA” is already part of the current NR agreement.

Amendments to NR Collective Agreement

Below are significant changes to the NR agreement which expired on September 30, 2007.

Only significant changes are highlighted or struck out; the parties agreed to convert “days” into “decimals” unless not appropriate; changes resulting from application of the new PSLRA (2005) are not indicated.

Shift Work (Art. 8.09)

The employer is now required to pay employees performing shift work at least two (2) consecutive days off in each seven (7) calendar day period, instead of in each eight (8) calendar day period.

Overtime (Art. 9.09 NEW)

The employer is required to pay the cost of an employee’s transportation to or from the employee’s residence in overtime situations where the employee is required to:

a) report to work before public transportation services have commenced; or

b) remain or return to work after normal transportation services have been suspended.

Travelling Time (Art. 13.01)

The maximum number of hours for travel beyond North America has been increased from twelve (12) hours to fifteen (15) hours.

Advance Payment of Vacation Pay (Art. 15.11)

This provision has been deleted as it has become irrelevant, as a result of direct depositing.

Recovery of Unearned Vacation Leave (Art. 15.15)

In the event of termination of employment for incapacity, the employer shall no longer be able to recover unearned vacation leave from monies owed to the employee.

Bereavement Leave (Art. 17.02)

An employee may, at his or her option, take a period of five (5) consecutive days of bereavement leave either:

a) commencing two (2) days following the death; or

b) at some other time, provided that the leave includes the day of the memorial.

An absence for bereavement now clearly expresses it is for a single period and is not to be segmented.

As Canadian society has evolved, the text now also speaks to commemorative ceremony, as opposed to being limited to funerals.

Maternity and Parental Allowances (Arts. 17.04 and 17.07)

An employee on maternity or parental leave who becomes eligible for a pay increment or other pay increase shall have her or his maternity or parental allowance adjusted accordingly.

Leave Without Pay for the Care of the Immediate Family (Art. 17.09 NEW)

An employee has, subject to operational requirements, the right to leave without pay for care of a member of his or her immediate family for a minimum period of three (3) weeks. Total leave granted under this clause may not exceed five (5) years during an employee’s total period of employment in the public service.

This clause replaces Art. 17.09 (Leave Without Pay for the Care and Nurturing of Pre-School Age Children) and Art.17.12 (Leave Without Pay for the Long-Term Care of a Parent).

Registration Fees (Art. 21.02)

The employer is now required to pay an employee’s registration fees for membership in an organization or governing body if eligibility for membership is a qualification specified in the Standards for Selection and Assessment for the NR Group. The employer is required to make payment regardless of whether or not the fees are a requirement for the performance of the duties of the employee’s position.

Grievance Procedure (Art. 35)

The grievance procedure is now limited to three steps, as opposed to four steps in the previous collective agreement. This is a gain made by the Institute and should accelerate grievance processing.

General Economic Increase

Effective October 1, 2007: 2.3%
Effective October 1, 2008: 1.5%
Effective October 1, 2009: 1.5%
Effective October 1, 2010: 1.5%

The above increases were imposed by legislation. They do not apply to the Recruitment and Retention Allowance (“Terminable Allowance”), as the legislation prohibits any increases in allowances.

Duration (Art. 48.01)

The collective agreement expires on September 30, 2011.

As the collective agreement is the result of an arbitral award, and is binding on the parties, no ratification vote will be held.

Publish Date: 16-JUN-2009 03:42 PM
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