Frequently Asked Questions

The answers to the questions below are useful in determining who must register and how Monthly Returns are completed.

Am I registered as a lobbyist?

Please check the Registry of Lobbyists that is available online through the Office of the Registrar of Lobbyists website.

If your name or names of your faculty or staff are not listed, add a name to the list by filling out the Lobbyist Registration Template.

If you, your faculty or staff member no longer intend to lobby, or if a faculty or staff member is no longer employed at UBC, please fill in the same template to remove a name.

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I know that I have to send a Monthly Return to UBC’s Government Relations Office. Where can I find that Monthly Return (Communications Entries) Template to disclose the written collection of my faculty’s communications “made orally and arranged in advance” with DPOHs?

A Monthly Return (Communications Entries) Template is available to download online.

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What information does the Monthly Return require?

A Monthly Return is required after every month in which lobbying takes place. The Monthly Return is to report all lobbying at previously arranged oral meetings and must list:

  •  the date of the communication with a “Designated Public Office Holder” (DPOH)
  • the DPOHs
  • the subject matter(s) of the communication (from a drop down list on the template)
    • first name and last name
    • position title
    • the branch or unit
  • the government institution (choose from a drop down list on the template or specify one that is not included on the drop down list)

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What is meant by communication “made orally and arranged in advance”?

This is reportable communication that the Office of the Commissioner of Lobbying has described as “pre-arranged verbal communications between a lobbyist and a DPOH”. The meeting is not reportable if the lobbyist does not actually attend the meeting.

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Who is a Designated Public Office Holder (DPOH)?
The Lobbying Act defines DPOH as:

A minister of the Crown or a minister of state and any person employed in his or her office who is appointed under subsection 128(1) of the Public Service Employment Act,

Any other public office holder who, in a department within the meaning of paragraph (a), (a.1) or (d) of the definition “department” in section 2 of the Financial Administration Act:

  • occupies the senior executive position, whether by the title of deputy minister, chief executive officer or by some other title, or
  • is an associate deputy minister or an assistant deputy minister or occupies a position of comparable rank, and
  • any individual who occupies a position that has been designated by regulation under the provisions of the Lobbying Act.

The first eleven positions or classes of positions were designated by way of regulation on July 2, 2008:

  • Chief of the Defence Staff
  • Vice Chief of the Defence Staff
  • Chief of Maritime Staff
  • Chief of Land Staff
  • Chief of Air Staff
  • Chief of Military Personnel
  • Judge Advocate General

Any positions of Senior Advisor to the Privy Council Office to which the office holder is appointed by the Governor in Council

  • Deputy Minister (Intergovernmental Affairs) Privy Council Office
  • Comptroller General of Canada
  • Any position to which the office holder is appointed pursuant to paragraph 127.1(1)(a) or (b) of the Public Service Employment Act

The next three positions or classes of positions were designated by way of regulation on September 20, 2010:

  • Members of Parliament
  • Senators
  • Staff working in the offices of the Leader of the Opposition in the House of Commons and in the Senate, appointed pursuant to subsection 128(1) of the Public Service Employment Act.

If you are uncertain about whether an official is a DPOH, please ask him / her.

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What are the penalties for failure to comply with the Act?

The penalties are up to $50,000.00 or six months in jail on summary conviction or both; and up to $200,000.00 or two years in jail on indictment or both. The Act sets a 5-year limitation period for summary conviction from the date the Commissioner became aware of the offence and 10 years after the day the alleged offence occurred. Further, the Commissioner may prohibit a person convicted of an offence under the Act from lobbying for up to 2 years. Additionally if an employee of the University has been successful at arranging funding, but is found to be an unregistered Lobbyist, that funding will be lost to the University. Since the introduction of the new law, the University has lost funding in a situation of this kind despite the person being registered later in the process.

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As a lobbyist, how long do I need to maintain meeting information?

The Lobbying Act does not specify that DPOHs or lobbyists must keep records of meetings; only that lobbyists file accurate reports and that DPOHs confirm the information provided by a lobbyist when asked to do so by the Commissioner. However, it is expected that some means of keeping track of arranged meetings or telephone calls will be maintained by the Faculty, School, College, VP or AVP Office. In the case of an audit it will be particularly important to have an adequate and accurate report available should the DPOH recall/record information about the meeting that is at odds with the Monthly Return. The records should be maintained for 10 years from the date of the meeting.

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Please feel free to contact with any questions you may have.