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2011/2012 Report on Plans and Priorities - Future-oriented Financial Statements

Employee future benefits

(a) Pension benefits
Environment Canada’s employees participate in the Public Service Pension Plan, which is sponsored and administered by the Government. Pension benefits accrue up to a maximum period of 35 years at a rate of 2% per year of pensionable service, times the average of the best five consecutive years of earnings. The benefits are integrated with Canada/Québec Pension Plans benefits and they are indexed to inflation.

Both the employees and the department contribute to the cost of the Plan. The forecast expenses are $62,561,982 in 2010-11 and $55,399,289 in 2011-12, representing approximately 2.0 times the contributions of employees.

Environment Canada's responsibility with regard to the Plan is limited to its contributions. Actuarial surpluses or deficiencies are recognized in the financial statements of the Government of Canada, as the Plan's sponsor.

(b) Severance benefits
Environment Canada provides severance benefits to its employees based on eligibility, years of service and final salary. These severance benefits are not pre-funded. Benefits will be paid from future authorities. Information about the severance benefits, measured as at March 31, is as follows:

(in thousands of dollars)Estimated
Accrued benefit obligation, beginning of year$113,951$123,283
Expense for the year18,079(5,691)
Benefits paid during the year(8,747)(8,358)
Accrued benefit obligation, end of year$123,283$109,234
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