Accounting Services’ primary responsibility is the preparation of the City’s annual consolidated financial statements, ensuring that all transactions are accounted for in accordance with standards set by the Public Sector Accounting Board, and meet provincial and federal legislative reporting requirements. To meet this primary objective, the division ensures accurate and timely execution and reporting of all transactions, including payments to City vendors.
The division also:
- provides quality assurances through established standards of excellence, communication and monitoring practices
- promotes innovation by reviewing policies, procedures, practices and implementing systems for improvement
- solicits ideas from internal and external client groups and incorporates feedback into daily activities
- engages in various financial reporting, invoicing and vendor payment activities
- supports other divisions with their financial reporting needs
- supports and educates customers and vendors on processes, requirements and performance standards
The Director’s Office is responsible for ensuring that Accounting Services fulfils its mandate, through fulfillment of the following key responsibilities:
- developing short and long range work plans
- setting short and long term work plans and priorities, standards of performance and service delivery
- tracking the status of projects, collecting and monitoring performance
- signing legal agreements as one of the City’s corporate signing officers
The Financial Reporting Section of Accounting Services is primarily responsible for the preparation of the City’s consolidated financial statements including the consolidation of the financial results of the City’s agencies and corporations, preparation of Trust Fund and Sinking Fund Financial Statements, and preparation of the Provincial Financial Information Return (FIR). This section is also responsible for the Corporate Banking portfolio, which includes controlling and reconciling corporate bank accounts and overseeing the City’s petty cash system, and Tax Compliance unit, responsible for executing commodity tax recovery opportunities and filing all required tax returns. This section acts as corporate liaison with external auditors to execute the audit of the City’s financial statements.
This section of Accounting Services is primarily responsible for reviewing divisions operations to ensure the integrity of the data in the financial system and providing advice on accounting matters. This includes developing and maintaining reporting structures that meet the management information needs of all divisions. This group executes all capital project reporting and accounting requirements, approves all journal entries, prepares invoices and executes collections and provides cost accounting support to divisions for user fee development and alternate service delivery initiatives and performance measurements, through the Full Cost Model. The group is also responsible for reporting of actual expenditures to Council, which includes the annual consultant report, expenditure reports on the Mayor, City Councillors, and Agencies and Corporation Board members and preparing business expense report on a semi-annual basis for senior management and divisions.
The Accounts Payable Section is responsible for the financial control of payables, administering the city’s PCard Program, as well as the receipt and prompt payment of the City’s disbursement obligations. Recent improvements include a move towards a paperless and minimal effort process which continues to offer financial controls, while also offering enhanced functionality and reporting, as well as dynamic discounting capability.
The Financial Accounting Systems and Policy Section is primarily responsible for developing and maintaining the design specifications of the City’s financial information system, maintaining master data elements (such as cost centres, GL accounts, vendor records, etc.), establishing monitoring and controlling access to the system, training City staff on its use, end-user support on the financial accounting and logistic modules, and for the coordination of financial policy and procedures that the system supports.