March 3, 2016

Media Lock-Up for Budget 2016

Minister of Finance Bill Morneau will table Budget 2016 in the House of Commons on Tuesday, March 22, 2016, at approximately 4:00 p.m.

The media lock-up will start at 9:30 a.m. and will be held at 111 Sussex Drive (John G. Diefenbaker Building) in Ottawa. The lock-up will end when the designated Department of Finance official at 111 Sussex Drive announces that the embargo is lifted, at approximately 4:00 p.m.

For media outlets setting up equipment and lines prior to the start of the lock-up at 9:30 a.m., please note that a security sweep of 111 Sussex Drive will begin at 8:30 a.m., at which time everyone will be required to leave the hall for the duration of the security sweep.

Entry to the media lock-up is restricted to journalists accredited through the Parliamentary Press Gallery. To register and for more information on accreditation, contact Collin Lafrance, Acting Chief of the Press Gallery, at 613-992-4511 or

Embargo Procedures

Budget 2016 material will be made available when the lock-up starts at 9:30 a.m., and will remain under embargo until released by the designated official upon tabling of the Budget in the House of Commons at approximately 4:00 p.m. USB keys containing Budget 2016 documents will be available in the media lock-up. A single copy of Budget 2016 documents will also be provided free of charge to those who need them (i.e., reporters, producers).

Once the lock-up has commenced, no one will be allowed to leave the room or contact their office until the embargo is lifted.

When entering the lock-up, journalists, crew members, media guests, etc. will be required to sign an undertaking to respect the release arrangements and not to remove, release or communicate documents, materials or information, or other records of any nature whatsoever, to anyone in any manner (including the use of wireless communication devices such as wireless microphones, wireless modems and air cards, wireless keyboards and printers, cellular phones, and smartphones) until they are released from the embargo.

The Department of Finance, with the agreement of the Press Gallery Executive, reserves the right to refuse access to any future Department of Finance embargoed releases to any person and/or their organization that breaches the terms of the undertaking.

The undertaking stipulates that devices are not allowed in the lock-up and must be turned in at the entrance to the secured reading. Department of Finance officials will hold them until the embargo is lifted. See details in the table below.


Laptops, notebooks, tablets (7" or 17.5 cm and larger, with no phone functionality) and other portable computers. However, media will be responsible for switching these devices to “airplane mode” with all radio (receiving or transmitting) and internal built-in wireless functionalities disabled. Those who fail to do so will be requested to turn in their computer/tablet.


Wireless communication devices including cellular phones, BlackBerry units, smartphones, iPhones, wireless keyboards and printers, two-way radios, personal digital assistants, and/or any other removable wireless communication devices including modems, air cards, mobile hotspots, and wireless microphones.

Space Allocation and Equipment Set-Up

Space at 111 Sussex Drive will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

Media organizations wishing to make arrangements for telephone and data lines, as well as other technical applications, should contact Bell Canada at, or Rogers Communications at no later than Tuesday, March 15, 2016.

Media required to file urgently upon embargo release are advised to purchase high-speed Internet service. Please note that only non-wireless modems will be supplied. Equipment should be delivered directly to media to provide to technicians.

Set-up of equipment and lines will take place from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Monday, March 21, and will start again at 6:30 a.m. on Tuesday, March 22.

All equipment installations and testing must be completed by 8:30 a.m. on Budget Day, Tuesday, March 22, at which time the briefing area will be cleared for a security sweep.

Once the embargo is lifted, please note that space at 111 Sussex Drive will continue to be available until 8:00 p.m. on Budget Day, at which time media organizations present will need to vacate the premises.


Prior to the tabling of Budget 2016, special security buses will be available to transport journalists who must be at their working positions when the speech begins in the House of Commons. These journalists will be transported to the designated entrance door of the Centre Block and to the corner of Sparks and O’Connor Streets.

Authorizations to board these special buses will be issued and regulated by the Press Gallery. Passengers will also be required to sign a second undertaking in advance.

Journalists will be authorized to leave the buses when signalled by the designated Department of Finance official, but the embargo will remain in force until it is lifted by the designated Department of Finance official at 111 Sussex Drive. This means that no budget information may be communicated by any means whatsoever until the embargo is lifted.

Meals and Refreshments

Members of the media will be able to purchase their lunch and refreshments from a special canteen located in the secured reading area (cash payment only). No outside food delivery will be allowed.

Government of Canada Officials

Starting at 10:30 a.m. Government of Canada officials, including ministerial staff, will be on hand at the media lock-up to provide information on a deep background, not-for-attribution basis only. Audio recording or video recording with audio of these briefings for the purpose of broadcast is strictly prohibited.


Representatives of stakeholder groups will be available to the media in the Railway Committee Room (Room 253-D), located in the Centre Block of Parliament Hill, following the tabling of Budget 2016 at approximately 4:00 p.m. Media representatives wishing to interview these stakeholders will need to acquire proper Parliament Hill accreditation.

Requests for Interviews with the Minister

Requests for interviews should be directed to Annie Donolo, Press Secretary for the Minister of Finance, at 613-769-7187.

For further information:

Daniel Lauzon
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Finance

Jack Aubry
Media Relations
Department of Finance

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