Canada. Privy Council Office

Identity area

Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

Canada. Privy Council Office

Description area

Dates of existence



The Privy Council for Canada was established by the British North America Act at Confederation as a “council to aid and advise the government of Canada”(Archivia). From the beginning, the Privy Council was synonymous with Cabinet, in part because of common membership. The Treasury Board, established 2 July 1867, is a permanent sub-committee of the Privy Council which deals exclusively with the financial matters of government operations. Other sub-committees, including those responsible for the war efforts, have been appointed and disbanded as necessary.

Appointed Clerk of the Privy Council in 1940, A.D.P. Heeney is credited with making the organization and operations of the Privy Council more business-like. Providing a professional clerical secretariat for the committees of the Privy Council remains the chief responsibility of the Privy Council Office. The position of Clerk of the Privy Council is now considered the highest status position in the civil service hierarchy.

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