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This audit would examine the effectiveness of the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA) and the Department of Communications and the Arts’ (the department’s) administration of grant funding to support the culture and capability of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and organisations.
The audit would focus on the NIAA’s administration of the Culture and Capability program under the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS), and the department’s administration of the Indigenous Languages and Arts program and Indigenous Visual Arts Industry Support program. The IAS Culture and Capability program has a recurrent appropriation of approximately $50 million a year, and the two programs managed by the department have a total of $41 million in funding.
As part of a series of audits examining key funding streams under the IAS and associated programs, this audit would determine whether grant funding is being appropriately and effectively administered to ensure the achievement of improved culture and capability outcomes.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of the design and early delivery of the Australian Government’s $444 million partnership with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation to deliver water quality improvements, crown-of-thorns starfish control, science for reef restoration, increased community engagement and improved monitoring.
The grant agreement signed with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation in June 2018 includes key design milestones to be met in the period between 31 August and 24 December 2018, including the preparation of various plans and strategies. The foundation relies on delivery partners (including subcontractors), and the grant agreement addresses the processes by which subcontracting may be undertaken.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities Regional Development’s award of funding under the Regional Aviation Access Program, and the administration of agreements with successful applicants for funding.
The Regional Aviation Access Program provides funding assistance for access and safety upgrades to remote aerodromes, as well as subsidised flights, to ensure residents of remote communities have access to regional service centres. The 2018–19 Budget included $85 million for the program for that year and over the forward estimates.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of the administration of grant funding to support the protection of Indigenous land and sea country across Australia.
The National Indigenous Australians Agency provides funding through the Jobs, Land and Economy program of the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS), which currently supports 120 Working on Country Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ranger groups. The Department of the Environment and Energy’s Indigenous Protected Areas program enables land and sea country to be managed according to the wishes of traditional owners. Funding for these programs from 2013 to 2023 amounts to more than $800 million.
As part of a series of audits examining key funding streams under the IAS and associated programs, this audit would seek to determine whether this grant funding is being appropriately and effectively administered to deliver social, cultural, environmental and economic outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of the National Indigenous Australians Agency’s (NIAA’s) administration of the Remote Australia Strategies program, one of five streams of Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS) funding.
The Remote Australia Strategies program, which has a recurrent appropriation of approximately $50 million a year, is designed to support projects that contribute to improved education, employment and community safety in remote areas. This is achieved through grant funding to support place-based agreements with Indigenous communities and regions, alongside improved infrastructure in remote areas, including telecommunications and renewable energy. Other Australian Government commitments delivered under the program include the Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Program ($7 million a year from the IAS) and Outback Power ($10 million from the IAS).
As part of a series of audits examining the key funding streams under the IAS and associated programs outside of the NIAA, the audit would seek to determine whether grant funding is being appropriately and effectively administered to ensure the achievement of improved outcomes for remote Australia.
This audit would examine the efficiency and effectiveness of centralised government grants hubs, including the Business Grants Hub (within the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science), the Community Grants Hub (within the Department of Social Services) and GrantConnect, the Australian Government’s whole-of-government grant information system.
Grants hubs are intended to reduce red tape for grant applicants and recipients and result in administrative efficiencies for government. This audit would assess whether grants hubs deliver efficiency savings and provide sufficient transparency and assurance about grant processes and outcomes.
This audit would examine the effectiveness of early implementation of the Regional Land Partnerships Program by the Department of the Environment and Energy and the Department of Agriculture.
In November 2018, the Australian Government announced the award of funding for 195 projects under the $450 million program to support natural resource management and sustainable agriculture, and protect biodiversity. The program represents a significant change in the approach to delivering natural resource management that involves 49 management units across Australia and non-government and state, territory and local government service providers. The audit would examine governance, oversight and performance monitoring arrangements.