Docstoc

PEO OSPE Professional Engineers Ontario

Document Sample
PEO OSPE Professional Engineers Ontario Powered By Docstoc
					Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

Section One – PEO and OSPE facts


Questions                  Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO)                              Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE)

                       PEO has been delegated authority from the government to               OSPE is the advocacy and member services organization
                       protect the public interest, safety and well-being through            formed by Ontario engineers to promote their professional
                       licensing and regulation of the practice of professional              and economic interests.
What is the difference engineering.
between PEO and                                                                              A member-interest organization must place the unique
OSPE?                  A public-interest organization must place the general                 interests of one particular segment of the population (in this
                       interests of the largest portion of the population (in this case,     case, Ontario’s more than 75,000 professional engineers) at
                       all citizens of Ontario) at the forefront of any debate, lobby        the forefront of any debate, lobby activity, or service
                       activity, or service provision.                                       provision.

Why are two separate       As is the case with medicine and law, the public needs a          As is the case with medicine and law, the engineering
organizations              strong regulatory body that will ensure the highest standards     profession needs a body that can respond to the concerns of
needed?                    of practice among engineering practitioners.                      its members and represent their interests.

                           In 1922, the Ontario government passed the first                  OSPE was created jointly by PEO and the Canadian Society
                           Professional Engineers Act, which created PEO. An                 of Professional Engineers (CSPE). The creation of OSPE
                           exclusive scope of practice, right to practise, or licence, was   was the result of a debate throughout the 1990s to separate
How were the               created for members of PEO in 1937 when the Professional          regulatory and non-regulatory affairs for the profession,
organizations              Engineers Act was first revised.                                  culminating in a referendum of PEO members in 2000 that
formed?                                                                                      found 80 per cent support among voters for starting a
                                                                                             separate advocacy organization.

                                                                                             OSPE became a legal entity in April 2000.

                           12,047 of PEO’s then about 69,000 members voted in
                           favour of creating OSPE; 2,903 voted against it; 86 ballots
Exactly how many
                           were spoiled. That’s a participation rate of about 21.6 per
people voted in the
                           cent. This is a relatively high participation rate for PEO
referendum to create
                           elections.
OSPE?




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                               1
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

Questions                  Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO)                              Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE)

                           PEO is funded primarily through the fees it charges to fulfill    The 2000 referendum, subsequently approved by the Ontario
                           its regulatory mandate (e.g. annual licences, examinations,       Ministry of the Attorney General, saw licence holders vote to
                           registration, designation, certificate of authorization, etc.).   allow PEO to raise its annual fees and pass a portion of that
                           PEO also receives non-fee revenue from such activities as         increase along to OSPE to fund its work. This funding
                           publication advertising, sponsorship of special events,           amounted to $30 per active licensed engineer annually for
                           interest on investments, rent at 40 Sheppard Ave. W., etc.        the period from January 2001 to December 2003 plus a one-
                                                                                             time grant of 10 per cent of unrestricted equity in the PEO
                                                                                             reserves This totalled about $6.3 million
How are the
                                                                                             PEO also transferred non-regulatory programs to OSPE.
organizations
                                                                                             These programs’ funding was transferred with them during
funded?
                                                                                             the transition period. This includes initiatives like the
                                                                                             Employment Advisory Service and the coordination of the
                                                                                             Ontario portion of National Engineering Week.

                                                                                             In accordance with the Agreement, transitional funding to
                                                                                             OSPE ceased after three years. It is funded by its
                                                                                             membership fees, revenue from its affinity programs (e.g.
                                                                                             insurance, products and services), professional development
                                                                                             programs and other non-regulatory activities.

                           $ 21,602,500 – per PEO audited financial statements               $3,225,597 – per OSPE’s 2010 annual report

                           $12,683,268 from P.Eng. annual fee                                $1,048,946 from membership
How much revenue
does each
                           $5,120,789 from application, registration, examination and        $1,092,137 from royalties and sponsorship
organization
                           other fees
generate? What are
                                                                                             The balance comes from government programs, professional
the major sources of
                           $2,863,881 from 40 Sheppard Ave. W.                               development, career centre, investment revenue and other
revenue?
                                                                                             revenue
                           The balance comes from investment and advertising
                           income.




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                             2
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

Questions                  Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO)                             Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE)

                           The mandate of PEO is to regulate the practice of                The mandate of OSPE is to promote the professional and
                           engineering in Ontario in the public interest and to govern      economic interests of professional engineers in Ontario by
                           licence holders, holders of Certificates of Authorization,       advocating on behalf of its members, offering member
                           holders of temporary licences, holders of provisional            services, and providing opportunities for professional
                           licences and holders of limited licences in accordance with      development.
                           the Professional Engineers Act, Regulation 941, Regulation
                           260 and the bylaws in order that the public interest is served
                           and protected. [Professional Engineers Act, section 2(3)]

                           Under the Professional Engineers Act, PEO licenses
                           Ontario’s 75,000 professional engineers, grants limited,
What is the mandate        temporary, and provisional licences, and permits firms to
of each organization?      offer engineering services to the public under Certificates of
                           Authorization, to serve and protect the public interest.

                           PEO also disciplines professional engineers, other licence
                           holders and firms that fail to maintain the profession’s
                           technical and ethical standards, and prosecutes in the
                           Courts those practising professional engineering without a
                           licence, or using a term, title or designation that may lead
                           others to believe they are entitled to practise.

                           PEO’s additional objects are set out in section 2(4) of the
                           Act.

                      PEO has transferred the following programs/initiatives to
                      OSPE:
                         • Employment Advisory Service
                         • Ontario Engineering Competition
                         • Benevolent fund (administrative support)
Which PEO programs       • Programs of the Women in Engineering Advisory
have been transferred       Committee
to OSPE?                 • Fee Schedule
                         • Salary Survey

                           The Ontario Professional Engineers Awards is a joint
                           program.




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                            3
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

Questions                  Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO)                            Ontario Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE)
                           No, the survey was not fielded by PEO. Whenever PEO
I received a survey
                           undertakes a survey or conducts a consultation, we identify
about the referendum
                           clearly that the survey or consultation is being conducted by
that doesn’t identify
                           us or on our behalf.
who’s conducting it.
Did the survey come
from PEO?

                           A meeting of senior volunteers of both organizations has
Why can’t PEO and
                           been scheduled for December 15, regardless of the
OSPE just sit down
                           outcome of the referendum.
and work this out?

                           The budget for the referendum is $160,000.

                           The estimate from the service provider is $134,036 based
                           on a mailing to 75,000 members (actual was 74,962) and a
                           return rate of 15 per cent (based on PEO’s experience with
                           council elections), and assuming a 70 per cent return via
                           mail and a 30 per cent return via Internet/voice.
How much does this
referendum cost?
                           The final cost will be dependent on the return rate and the
                           method used to vote. In addition, in any balloting PEO may
                           have additional costs, such as recounts, sending out
                           additional packages, answering queries, etc. Given this is
                           PEO’s first electronic vote, the contingencies were budgeted
                           to be much higher than normal.

                           PEO Council approved the Accord at its meeting of               OSPE’s 2009 Annual Report noted approval of the Accord by
                           February 26-27, 2009, and also approved terminating the         both PEO and OSPE: “Reinforcing OSPE’s partnership with
                           2000 Agreement in favour of working with OSPE under the         Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), in February 2009
                           terms of the Accord. The report, New PEO-OSPE Working           both organizations signed a new Accord whereby PEO is
Have both PEO and
                           Relationship, and associated motions approved by Council        committed to the long-term success of OSPE and OSPE is
OSPE approved the
                           are available at www.peo.on.ca/peo-ospe_referendum.html.        committed to the preservation of self regulation of the
2009 Accord?
                                                                                           profession by PEO.” p. 3. The report is available at
                                                                                           http://www.ospe.on.ca/resource/resmgr/doc_governance/200
                                                                                           9_ar.pdf.




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                       4
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

Section 2 – PEO’s answers to questions, where opinion information is provided

                           PEO and OSPE are separate legal entities. The obligations of each organization to the other were defined initially through the
                           PEO-OSPE Agreement signed in 2000 and amended in 2004.
What is the nature of
                           In 2009, PEO Council and the OSPE Board both approved an Accord to supersede the Agreement. The Accord’s intention is
the relationship
                           that the relationship be further refined by ongoing communication and cooperation between the respective organizations and
between OSPE and
                           their staffs.
PEO?
                           The termination of the Agreement will not impact the respective roles of the organizations. It is not planned that the
                           organizations would merge.
                           The Agreement, signed in 2000, provided for a number of transitional measures (e.g. transfer of programs, secondment of
                           staff, initial funding, per capita funding, etc.) over the first three years to establish OSPE. The Agreement also provides
                           significant continuing obligations for PEO, including providing database information to OSPE and requiring PEO not to
                           compete in the provision of any programs or services with OSPE. The Agreement provides for its termination by PEO but not,
                           interestingly, by OSPE.

                           OSPE is determined to settle disagreements between the two organizations by using the dispute resolution mechanism set
                           out in the Agreement, which may have an arbitrator “conclusively determine the exact range and scope of the mandates of
                           OSPE and PEO in a manner that clearly limits the scope of each organization's authority, avoids duplication of activities and
                           services for and on behalf of each organization's members, and provides a clear and unambiguous set of criteria on which
Why does PEO
                           future disputes relating to each organization's mandate may be resolved.”
Council want to
terminate the
                           However, PEO’s authority is set out in the Professional Engineers Act. PEO Council approved the PEO-OSPE Accord in 2009
agreement?
                           to supersede the Agreement because it wants elected volunteers to resolve all issues between the organizations rather than
                           an arbitrator.

                           After many joint meetings and extensive discussions, PEO Council concluded that continuing with an outdated and overly
                           restrictive Agreement, when it is possible to terminate it, could be viewed by practitioners as poor stewardship of PEO’s
                           resources. Council believes operating under the PEO-OSPE Accord, which sets out broad principles regarding the two
                           organizations working in the best interest of the profession, will be a better use of resources.

                           Thus Council is recommending that PEO members vote to terminate the Agreement.


                           OSPE has requested that PEO transfer to OSPE and continue to fund four programs PEO currently delivers. The programs
                           are: the Ontario Centre for Engineering and Public Policy (OCEPP); the Government Liaison Program (GLP); Province-wide
What are the
                           Mentorship Program; and the Ontario Professional Engineers Awards. PEO believes the focus of the four programs, as
programs at the
                           presented by PEO, relates directly to PEO’s purpose of governing licence and certificate holders and regulating professional
centre of the current
                           engineering in Ontario to serve and protect the public, so that they are not in conflict with or a duplication of any similar
dispute between PEO
                           programs OSPE currently does or might provide. It should be noted that the Ontario Professional Engineers Awards is a joint
and OSPE?
                           program.

Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                            5
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

                           However, should the focus of these programs shift to become member-centred, rather than profession-centred, and thus
                           outside PEO’s mandate, PEO would cease delivering them, rather than fund them through OSPE, which is OSPE’s request,
                           because PEO cannot indirectly fund an activity that it is not authorized to do directly.

                           As noted, PEO Council does not consider these programs to be in conflict with or a duplication of those offered by OSPE, so
                           there is nothing to prevent OSPE delivering similar programs focused on its members’ interests.
                           PEO has separate Agreements, both formal and as understandings, on various programs with OPSE. The OSPE-PEO
Will PEO continue          Accord, point 7 covers this issue: “We undertake regular business through operational contracts as with any other
any programs with          client/vendor relationship”. Joint activities will continue on this basis. Currently, PEO and OSPE have agreements to jointly
OSPE, if the               host the Ontario Professional Engineers Awards, and transfer affinity money from one of Engineers Canada’s affinity
Agreement is               programs, which is sent to the constituent associations in all other provinces, to OSPE. The latter agreement provides about
terminated?                $250,000/year of funding to OSPE. OSPE also is the Ontario representative on the National Women in Engineering
                           Committee, and we jointly host seminars, etc.
Why does President         In his campaign speech of 2010, President Adams recommended transfer of the bulk of OCEPP’s activities to OSPE to avoid
Adams now favour           duplication and decrease the annual OCEPP operating budget. Since then, as President Adams wrote in the
PEO retaining the          September/October issue of Engineering Dimensions, PEO has refocused its public policy efforts through OCEPP on new
Ontario Centre for         areas of engineering practice requiring guidelines and standards. OCEPP is now operating under an external advisory board
Engineering and            that includes an OSPE representative, “to ensure its efforts remain on track, and is liaising with government officials,
Public Policy when he      engineers and scientists on societal needs. This refocused effort,” he wrote, “will enhance PEO’s primary functions of
campaigned in 2010         governing licence holders and regulating engineering practice. Further, it will provide greater value at substantially lower cost
that PEO transfer          in fulfilling our regulatory responsibilities in current and new fields.”
most of OCEPP’s
activities to OSPE?
                           PEO is not supporting OSPE. PEO paid $30 per member, plus the costs of the programs it transferred to OSPE, during the
                           three-year period of transition when OSPE was established in 2000. This funding ceased as of January 1, 2004. PEO now
                           pays to OSPE only a fee to be a sponsor of the Ontario Professional Engineers Awards. The Agreement has no impact on
                           PEO's sponsorship of the awards, so member fees are not likely to change as a result of members voting to terminate the
Is PEO still
                           Agreement. PEO has also signed over to OSPE money that Manulife Financial previously paid to PEO as a participant in the
supporting OSPE?
                           Engineers Canada affinity program. Again, termination of the Agreement is unlikely to have an effect on this transfer, so
Will PEO fees be
                           members' fees would not be affected.
reduced if the
Agreement is
                           So approval of terminating the 2000 PEO-OSPE Agreement would not necessarily mean a decrease in member fees, but
terminated?
                           would leave PEO the option of negotiating disagreements between the two organizations in a spirit of innovation, cooperation
                           and good will in the best interests of all. Such negotiation might lead to changes in PEO programs that could have an effect on
                           member fees, but it’s not possible to predict at this time. Right now, OSPE is requiring that disputes be settled through the
                           Agreement's costly legal mediation and arbitration provisions.
If the Agreement is        No. As in the case of medicine and law, it is in the public interest and the interests of members of the profession that there be
terminated, will PEO       both a strong a strong regulatory body that will ensure the highest standards of practice among engineering practitioners and
take over OSPE’s           a body that can respond to the concerns of its members and represent their interests. A public-interest organization, such as
programs? Will             PEO, must place the general interests of the largest portion of the population (in this case, all citizens of Ontario) at the

Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                              6
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

regulation and             forefront of any debate, lobby activity, or service provision. A member-interest organization, such as OSPE, must place the
advocacy for               unique interests of one particular segment of the population (in this case, Ontario’s more than 75,000 professional engineers)
engineers both be          at the forefront of any debate, lobby activity, or service provision. Generally, the interests of the larger public will also be those
done by PEO?               of individual professional engineers, but not necessarily. That was the reason for establishing OSPE 11 years ago, and it
                           remains as valid as ever.

                           There is no plan for PEO to reassume the member-interest programs provided by OSPE should the Agreement be terminated.
                           If they were inappropriate for PEO to provide in 2000 they are inappropriate now, as PEO’s statutory mandate has not
                           changed. However, terminating the Agreement enables the organizations to discuss issues in terms of the best interests of the
                           public and professional engineers, rather than in terms of the rights of OSPE.

                           As two mature organizations, PEO and OSPE must exist autonomously, working together when appropriate in a business-like
                           manner, as they would with any other external organization, rather than being bound together by an Agreement that was
                           intended to smooth the way for OSPE during its transitional years.
                           The referendum is about terminating the legal Agreement that laid some ground rules for the start up of OSPE and for during
                           the three-year transition period while PEO programs were being transferred. It is about finding a less legalistic and restrictive
                           method of resolving any disputes that might arise between the two organizations, which the Agreement prevents PEO from
                           doing by requiring mediation and third-party arbitration. The termination clause of the Agreement stipulates that it can be
                           terminated only by a vote of PEO members. Hence, the current ballot.
What’s this
referendum about, in       The issue is one of untangling PEO from OSPE, so that the organizations are truly autonomous.
a nutshell?
                           Should the Agreement be terminated, the intention is that there will continue to be two organizations providing programs
                           appropriate to their mandates. Sometimes these programs may be aimed at similar audiences, but focused differently. Where
                           it makes sense that the organizations should combine resources and work together, they will continue to do so should OSPE
                           be willing.


When PEO launched     Absolutely not, OSPE has the role to advocate for its individual members; PEO has the role to advocate for effective
OSPE, the latter was  legislation and regulations. Both PEO and OSPE need to advocate for the profession.
seen as a vehicle for
advocacy for
engineers. The PEO
now has a
Government Liaison
Program, meets with
provincial officials,
has held a town-hall
meeting regarding the
HST, and held a
government relations
conference in
September. Do you
Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                                  7
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

feel PEO is usurping
OSPE’s advocacy
role?
                           Advocacy is gaining public support for or recommendation of a particular cause or policy. PEO needs to gain public support for
                           its self-regulating mandate. In fact, one of the additional objects of the Professional Engineers Act requires PEO “To promote
As a licensing and
                           public awareness of the role of the Association”. In addition, extensive advocacy with the federal and provincial governments
regulatory body,
                           was required to develop effective regulations regarding mobility and the recognition of the credentials of international
should PEO be doing
                           engineering graduates. Self-regulation will only happen with a strong profession. Members have been granted the privilege of
any advocacy work at
                           self-regulation of the profession in the public interest. One of the roles of PEO is to provide the trusteeship and leadership of
all?
                           the engineering profession through licensing and development of competent and ethical professional engineers for today and
                           tomorrow’s needs. This requires effective advocacy.
                           Resolutions to disputes would be made within the profession by senior elected volunteers of PEO and OSPE, according to the
                           broad principles in the Accord, rather than by lawyers through mandatory mediation and binding arbitration, and discussions
                           would centre around making mutual gains for the public and the profession rather than around the rights prescribed in the
What will change if        Agreement. Should members vote to terminate the Agreement, Council fully intends that PEO’s relationship with OSPE would
the Agreement is           be conducted in this fashion, and hopes OSPE would also commit fully to such a relationship.
terminated?
                           In addition, PEO would discontinue providing OSPE personal information about its licence holders and engineering interns,
                           which the 2000 Agreement requires PEO to provide.


                           PEO will undertake activities in keeping with its mandate under the principal and additional objects of the Professional
What would not             Engineers Act. OSPE will continue operating in accordance with the mandate set out in its bylaws.
change if the
Agreement is               There will continue to be two organizations providing programs appropriate to their much different mandates. Sometimes
terminated?                these programs may be aimed at similar audiences, but focused differently. Where it makes sense that the organizations
                           should combine resources and work together, they will continue to do so.
                           You are exactly right as to PEO’s reasons for initiating the referendum. PEO does not see that there are any outstanding
This referendum
                           issues that can’t be resolved once all parties are at the table as independent, autonomous organizations. As to OSPE’s
appears to me that it
                           reasons, you need to ask them. It wouldn’t be fair of PEO to speculate.
is a formality to
properly sunset this
Agreement more than
there is any
contentious issue
outstanding. If this is
indeed the viewpoint
of PEO, what am I
missing to
understand why
OSPE is advising the
voters not to
Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                              8
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO

terminate this
existing Agreement?

                           Under the Professional Engineers Act, PEO’s purpose is defined under the Principal and Additional Objects:

                           Principal object
                           (3) The principal object of the Association is to regulate the practice of professional engineering and to govern its members,
                               holders of certificates of authorization, holders of temporary licences, holders of provisional licences and holders of limited
                               licences in accordance with this Act, the regulations and the by-laws in order that the public interest may be served and
If PEO can only                protected. R.S.O. 1990, c. P.28, s. 2 (3); 2001, c. 9, Sched. B, s. 11 (2).
incompletely,
obtusely, and              Additional objects
indirectly justify its     (4) For the purpose of carrying out its principal object, the Association has the following additional objects:
activities in the              1. To establish, maintain and develop standards of knowledge and skill among its members.
programs questioned
by OSPE, why                   2. To establish, maintain and develop standards of qualification and standards of practice for the practice of professional
shouldn't these                         engineering.
conflicting activities         3. To establish, maintain and develop standards of professional ethics among its members.
be de-funded,
abandoned, given               4. To promote public awareness of the role of the Association.
over to OSPE, or               5. To perform such other duties and exercise such other powers as are imposed or conferred on the Association by or
some other willing                under any Act. R.S.O. 1990, c. P.28, s. 2 (4).
recipient?
                           The programs OSPE has questioned are not directly necessary to carry out these objects. However, in establishing the
                           programs, PEO Council believed they could support the carrying out of these objects, if appropriately focused and delivered.
                           That said, should PEO and OSPE have further discussions around the programs OSPE has questioned, should some aspects
                           of the programs, as delivered by PEO, be deemed to go beyond support of the principal and additional objects, one would
                           expect the Joint Relations Committee to recommend to Council that PEO cease doing whatever was deemed above and
                           beyond. OSPE could then pick up what PEO would no longer do, or not, as it decides is most appropriate for its members.
                           Send questions to media@peo.on.ca. We will update this Q&A regularly as questions arise, so check back to the Referendum
Where can I find out
                           page on the PEO website (www.peo.on.ca/peo-ospe_referendum.html) for new information.
more information
about PEO and OSPE
relations and the
referendum?




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                               9
Q & A: Ontario Society of Professional Engineers and PEO



Section 3 – PEO answers to questions from a freelance writer for The Voice, OSPE’s newsletter, where opinion information is provided

Is the PEO looking to get rid of OSPE, or just sever the Agreement   In PEO’s opinion, the existing Agreement has outlived its usefulness. In
between the two organizations?                                       2009, PEO Council and the OSPE Board agreed that the organizations
                                                                     should adhere to a set of principles called the PEO-OSPE Accord. This
                                                                     document sets the foundation for the two organizations to work
                                                                     effectively together for the benefit of the profession and requires that
                                                                     differences are resolved within the profession, rather than by lawyers,
                                                                     as is required in the current agreement.




Revised December 6, 2011                                                                                                                   10

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:56
posted:10/2/2012
language:Unknown
pages:10