Public proceedings of the Board

Meeting of the Board of Directors on June 20, 2014


Board members present

John McCamus (Chair); Aly Alibhai; Nancy Cooper; Michelle Haigh; John Liston; James McNee; Derry Millar; Tim Murphy; James Yakimovich; Robert W. Ward (CEO/Ex Officio)


David Field; Sue McCaffrey; David McKillop; Stephanie Mealing; Michelle Séguin; Rod Strain

1. Meeting agenda

The meeting agenda was adopted.

2. Disclosure of conflict of interest

No conflicts of interest were identified.

3. Board meetings

3.1 Decision

The Board adopted the minutes of the April 3, 4 (Board and in-camera), 30 and May 28 meetings.

4. Chair’s report

The Chair welcomed back Board member Tim Murphy. The Chair extended congratulations to Board member Derry Millar on his Law Society Medal.

The Chair reported that:

  • He had recently met with the President of the Criminal Lawyers’ Association.
  • He had attended the annual conference of the Association of Legal Aid Plans (ALAP) in Iqaluit; the LAO President Bob Ward, Chair of the national association, led the conference skilfully.
  • The Board member self-assessments have been completed.
  • A succession planning sub-committee of the Board has been established, comprised of John Liston, Nancy Cooper and Derry Millar and will regularly consult with and inform the Board on this project. They have held a preliminary meeting and are drafting sub-committee terms of reference for Board feedback. They will draft a draft process for orderly succession as well as emergency succession.
  • The Chair’s travel expenses to Iqaluit for the ALAP conference totalled approximately $2,700.

4.1 Decision

The Board received the Chair’s Report.

5. Board reports

5.1 Corporate services reports

Financial statements


The Board adopted the LAO audited financial statements for the year ended March 31, 2014 and the audited employee pension plan financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2014.

5.2 Strategic planning and compliance reports

Outline of 2015/16 business plan and draft annual report


The Board approved the outline of the 2015/16 business plan and the draft annual report.

5.3 LAO/MAG/CLA Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

The Chair noted that the MOU between LAO/MAG/CLA expires March 31, 2016.

5.4 Child and Family Services Act (CFSA) funding/tariff enhancements decision

The Board approved the enhancement of CFSA funding/hourly allocations in accordance with tariff enhancements proposed by the Family Lawyers’ Association, to be supported by the new family funding.

6. Committee reports

6.1 Audit and Finance Committee


The Board adopted the Minutes of the Audit and Finance Committee meeting held on May 28, 2014.

6.2 Annexes

The following reports were presented:

  • LAO lawyer development initiatives. The Vice-President and General Counsel will be responsible for making sure the Human Resources (HR) department unites the lawyer training efforts of HR and the Lawyer Workforce Strategy (LWS). Consultation on the lawyer development initiative is ongoing. The response has generally been positive and enthusiastic.
  • Evaluation of Nishnawbe-Aski Legal Services Corporation
  • Gladue report writing initiative
  • Mental health appeals update
  • Refugee clinic pilot project
  • Other business: The Vice-President and General Counsel provided an update on a rapidly proceeding Law Society investigation of an employee who has been suspended with pay. No charges are anticipated at this point, and the suspension is expected to be lifted shortly.

    The President and CEO reported on a government policy for open information systems that allows the public to produce reports and manipulate data. The Vice-President, Strategic Planning and Compliance reported on the sources of data expected, including expanded access to ICON for all cases.

6.3 Decision

The Board received the following reports:

  • Lawyer development initiative report
  • Evaluation of Nishnawbe-Aski Legal Services Corporation
  • Status update on Gladue report writing services
  • Status update on mental health appeals initiative
  • Interim report on clinic refugee law project