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The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada > News & Events > Communications Magazine > Vol. 36, No. 3, Summer 2010 > Engineers’ Arbitral Awards
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Engineers’ Arbitral Awards

In 2009, members of the Engineering, Architecture and Land Survey (NR) and Nuclear Regulatory Group (NUREG) learned that the government had filed an application of judicial review, calling for the appeal of the arbitral awards that provided for the reimbursement of the fees incurred by these members in professional organizations or governing bodies. The reimbursement of fees is contained in a standard clause in collective agreements that play a key role in ensuring that employees meet the highest standards of professional qualification. The government claimed that the reimbursement of fees violated the Expenditure Restraint Act (ERA), the federal legislation that outlines remuneration limits for the government’s employees.

In 2010 the Institute was successful in arguing that the reimbursement of these registration fees should not be considered “additional remuneration.” The Federal Court ordered that the application for judicial review be dismissed, with costs. The conclusion of the judgment was that: “The Registration Fees Clause is not prohibited by the ERA.”

Nevertheless, the Attorney General of Canada filed a Notice of Appeal regarding the decision of the Federal Court in favour of the NUREG Group. Fortunately, the government has decided not to pursue the case as we received a Notice of discontinuance just prior to going to press.

NR Group Annual General Meeting

NR Group

The month of April marked the occasion of the NR Group Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Sub-Group Presidents meeting with the National Executive. The group’s architect members were given the opportunity to highlight the latest developments in their field.

NR Group members

Three NR Group members, engineer Lyse Blanchet (left), and architects Janet Gourlay-Vallance (centre) and María Inés Subercaseaux, gave a presentation on the field of heritage conservation in Canada.

Jon Hobbs

Jon Hobbs, Executive Director, The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, talked about the Vision and Mission of the Architectural Institute.

Randy Dhar

Randy Dhar addressed the issue of the shortage of architects and engineers in Canada.