Council reviewed and approved the association’s budget for the 2019/2020 fiscal year at its most recent meeting in April. To plan for the short- and long-term financial impacts that the association will be facing due to a number of external pressures, the budget for the coming year includes a greater contingency amount, increases to exam and application fees, and a $35 increase to annual membership fees for 2020.
Council is accountable for responsible financial management of the association and charting a course that will allow us to meet our regulatory obligations and operational requirements. In the last year, there has been significant changes: the new Professional Governance Act, as well as inflationary increases, required security upgrades, credit card information handling, and the cost of multi-year investigation and discipline cases.
For the 2020 membership renewal, the member fee will be $450. This $35 increase includes a $15 levy to help transition us from our existing regulatory framework to the Professional Governance Act. This means analyzing how the new act and its requirements will impact our current functions and bylaws, and determining our response; this entails legal review of our existing bylaws, researching the potential impacts of various requirements, determining feasibility, and liaising with government on proposed regulations. Government has also asked us to consider what practice rights for technologists could look like, which will need to be studied carefully.
The levy provides for additional contingency, which Council considered prudent in order to mitigate financial risk for the association. The levy is also intended to be a temporary transitional measure, since the permanent costs of the new regulatory regime are not yet known.
The remaining twenty dollars of the increase supports improvements to our ability to meet our public interest duty and build our capacity as a proactive regulator for the province’s 35,000 engineering and geoscience professionals. This includes a new practice advisor as well as legislation, ethics, and compliance staff to resource the growing work in these areas, such as expanding the practice guidance provided to professionals as well as increased activity in investigation and discipline.
More detailed information about the budget and the Professional Governance Act is available on our website, at egbc.ca/About/Governance/Responsible-Financial-Management.