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This is the first of two audit reports concerning the Tax Office's administration of SMSFs pursuant to the provisions of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993. This audit report examines the efficiency and effectiveness of the Tax Office's approach to regulating and registering self managed superannuation funds. Specifically the ANAO examined the:
Environment in which SMSFs operate, including the Tax Office's regulatory roles and responsibilities;
Tax Office's governance of its SMSF regulatory role; and
Systems, processes and controls the Tax Office uses to register SMSFs, and enforce the lodgement of fund income tax and regulatory returns.
The objective of the audit was to assess the effectiveness of procedures and processes used by DEST and the ATO to record HECS–HELP student loans. To achieve this, the ANAO assessed the performance of DEST and the ATO against three criteria as follows:
DEST monitored student contributions set by higher education providers for consistency with Australian Government policy;
DEST paid HECS–HELP advance payments to higher education providers based on sound estimates, and recorded, reconciled and reported these payments; and
the ATO has established procedures and processes to correctly record HECS–HELP loans against student tax records.
The objective of this audit was to determine the extent to which selected agencies have implemented the two recommendations of the previous audit; and the appropriateness of advice provided by Finance and the ATO. To address this audit objective, the audit assessed:
the roles of Finance and the ATO in clarifying: the interaction of the PB and SG Act; the ongoing role of the PB Act; and mechanisms to monitor Australian Government organisations' compliance with the PB Act;
the extent to which Finance and the ATO have provided guidance and other support to assist Australian Government organisations manage and meet statutory superannuation obligations for eligible contractors; and
whether Australian Government organisations have managed and met statutory superannuation obligations for contractors in past and current contracts.
The objective of the audit is to assess the effectiveness of the ATO's administration of debt collection. Micro-business debt is a particular focus of attention. The three key areas examined are:
strategies–especially the ATO's initiatives trialled in 2006;
infrastructure–the IT systems, people, policy and processes and risk management framework supporting the collection of debt; and
management and governance–planning, monitoring and reporting mechanisms and liaison with stakeholders.
The ANAO focused on the work of the campaigns area within the Debt Line, which has collection responsibility for 90 per cent of collectable debt cases and responsibility for other key, centralised functions such as reporting, quality assurance review, consistency and best practice, and the debt collection initiatives.
The objective of the audit was to assess the effectiveness of the management by Defence and the DMO of the procurement of the modernised High Frequency communication capability for the ADF. The audit focussed on Phase 3A of the Project which commenced in the mid 1990's and involved the selection of the Prime Contractor; negotiation of the Prime Contract and the Network Operation and Support Contract; and the development and implementation of the Communication System.
examine the ATO's implementation of the ten recommendations in The Australian Taxation Office's Management of its Relationshipwith Tax Practitioners (Audit Report No.19, 2002–03), having regard to any changed circumstances, or new administrative issues, affecting implementation of those recommendations; and
identify scope for improvement in the ATO's management of its relationship with tax practitioners.
Follow up audits are recognised as an important element of the accountability processes of Commonwealth administration. Parliament looks to the Auditor General to report, from time to time, on the extent to which Commonwealth agencies have implemented recommendations of previous audit reports. Follow up audits keep Parliament informed of progressive improvements and current challenges in areas of Commonwealth administration that have previously been subject to scrutiny through performance audits.
This audit focuses on the Australian Defence Force's (ADF) Air Combat fleet's logistics support, regular maintenance and structural refurbishment. These activities are collectively referred to as fleet in-service support. The current Defence White Paper states that Air Combat is the most important single capability for the defence of Australia.
The audit objective was to assess the effectiveness of the Air Combat fleet's in-service support arrangements to provide capability for air combat operations. Capital equipment acquisition projects covered by this report are limited to the Hornet and F-111 structural refurbishment projects, which aim to ensure these aircraft remain serviceable until their withdrawal from service.
The objective of the audit was to assess the application of the outcomes and outputs framework in Australian Government agencies. The audit included a review of:
the outcomes and outputs of agencies and the integration of the outcomes and outputs framework into agencies' operations;
the extent to which agencies' performance indicators incorporated better practice characteristics to enable agencies to meet their performance reporting obligations;
agencies' processes for capturing, monitoring and reporting financial and performance information and the extent to which outcomes and outputs information was used in agency decision-making; and
the extent that agencies met their external reporting and accountability obligations.
The audit consisted of a survey of 44 agencies subject to the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 (FMA Act) undertaken in October 2005 and detailed audit testing in three of those agencies. The purpose of the survey was to provide cross-agency data in relation to agencies' implementation of the framework during the period 2002–03 to 2005–06. The ANAO received responses from all 44 agencies, although not all agencies responded to all questions. The ANAO did not audit the information provided by survey participants and the reported results are based on agencies' responses to the survey.
The agencies at which detailed audit testing was undertaken were:
Department of Education Science and Training;
the then Department of the Environment and Heritage; and
The audit objective was to examine progress in the development of an overarching approach and guidance for the management of the Commonwealth's intellectual property (Recommendation No. 2 of Audit Report No. 25 of 2003–04).
assess, in a selection of FMA Act and CAC Act agencies, how well the revised Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines had been implemented; and
identify any better practice or common problem areas to assist other agencies in their future procurement activities.
The audit focused on procurement requirements that had changed as a result of the revised CPGs, rather than being a more general audit of compliance with all procurement requirements. The audit was conducted in the following entities:
Australian Federal Police;
Bureau of Meteorology;
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO);
The fleet oiler HMAS WESTRALIA was a key element of the Royal Australian Navy (hereafter referred to as ‘Navy') Maritime Operations Support Capability (MOSC) from 1989 until September 2006. WESTRALIA provided logistic support to naval operations and exercises and contributed to Defence international engagement through these activities. The new vessel to replace WESTRALIA is called HMAS SIRIUS and was commissioned by Defence in mid September 2006, which was concurrent with the formal decommissioning of WESTRALIA. This approach was adopted by Defence to ensure that Navy maintained a continuous afloat support capability.
examine the effectiveness of ASIC's processes for receiving reports of suspected breaches of the Corporations Act; and
assess the efficiency with which statutory reports are referred and investigated by ASIC.
The audit commenced in February 2006. ANAO undertook an assessment of ASIC's processes for receiving and referring for investigation statutory reports. ANAO also undertook a detailed examination of a random sample of 416 statutory reports received by ASIC in the period 2002–03 to 2004–05.
The audit scope did not extend to the role of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in prosecuting offences referred to it by ASIC.
The Department of the Treasury (the Treasury) manages Australia's relations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and various development banks. As of 30 June 2006, the Treasury's administered assets in the IMF and other international financial institutions totalled A$7.1 billion. Liabilities totalled A$4.8 billion. In addition to the liabilities of A$4.8 billion, there were contingent liabilities of A$7.3 billion, comprising uncalled share capital subscriptions.
In October 2002 a performance audit of the Treasury's management of international financial commitments (ANAO Audit Report No.10 of 2002–03 Treasury's Management of International Financial Commitments) was tabled in the Parliament. This audit is a follow-up to that audit. The objective was to assess the progress made by the Treasury in addressing the four major audit findings and two recommendations of the 2002 audit report.
The objective of the audit was to assess the ATO's administration of CGT compliance in the individuals market segment. The focus of the audit was the ATO's administration of compliance by individuals with respect to the two most common CGT events: real property and share disposals. The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) identified three key areas for review:
governance – the corporate planning and reporting arrangements relevant to the administration of CGT compliance in the individuals market segment, including how these are integrated with the ATO's overall approach to managing CGT;
identifying and assessing compliance risks – the mechanisms and strategies used to identify and assess CGT compliance risks in the individuals market segment; and
compliance activities – the products and processes used to manage CGT compliance in the individuals market segment.
The objective of this follow-up audit was to assess the extent to which DVA had implemented the recommendations from the original audit during the period 2002–06, including in its preparation of the IT outsourcing contract which will operate from 2007.
The objective of the report is to review the effectiveness of remediation activities put in place by Defence and the DMO to improve the performance of SDSS following the delivery in July 2003 of the SDSS Upgrade Project, with specific attention to the SDSS Get Well Programme. The audit reviewed the outcomes of the Get Well Programme, and assessed how effectively a segment of the Defence supply chain (of which SDSS is one key component) was meeting selected maritime end user capability and reporting requirements. In order to achieve this, the audit reviewed three key maritime combatant forces: COLLINS Class submarines; Adelaide Class Guided Missile Frigates (FFGs); and ANZAC Class Frigates. The ANAO notes that these three capabilities account for some 50 per cent of the Navy's total forecast expenditure for 2006–07.
The objective of the audit was to provide an independent assurance on the effectiveness of Defence and DMO's management of the acquisition of the ASLAV capability to Army. The audit examined the initial capability requirements and approval process, the contract negotiation process, and the management of the Project and Contracts by DMO.
The objectives of the audit were to assess agency performance in relation to compiling their Internet contract listings as required by the Senate Order and the appropriateness of the use of confidentiality provisions in Commonwealth contracts. The audit involved a review in seven agencies of the processes used to compile their Internet contract listings and the use of confidentiality provisions in contracts.
The objective of the audit was to review the operation of the ATO's Tax Agent and Business Portals. In conducting the audit the ANAO examined three key areas: governance – the governance arrangements supporting ongoing management of the Portals; portals development, user satisfaction and realisation of expected benefits – the ATO's processes for involving users in developing the Tax Agent and Business Portals, assessing user satisfaction, and evaluating business benefits arising from uptake of the Portals; and information technology (IT) security and user access controls – the ATO's IT security environment and user access controls supporting the operation of the Tax Agent and Business Portals.
The objective of the audit was to examine the effectiveness of Defence's management of the procurement of Minor capital equipment for Army capability. In particular, the audit focussed on the identification and approval of capability requirements; the management of Army Minors Program funding and expenditure; and DMO management of procurement processes for Army Minor projects. The audit focused on projects included in the Program as at 1 July 2005. As at that date, 85 projects were listed. Case studies illustrating particular issues in the management of the Program are profiled throughout the report in the relevant section.
The objective of the audit was to report on whether Defence applies Life-cycle Costing appropriately in support of decisions throughout the acquisition and management of its capital assets, and to make recommendations for any improvement. Criteria were established against each of the issues considered by the audit, namely LCC policy and coordination, use of LCC in investment decisions, use of LCC to support budgeting, data to support LCC and LCC training and education.
The objective of the audit was to assess the performance of the Child Support Agency in the administration of key aspects of the Child Support Scheme. The ANAO previously audited the CSA in 1993-94 and identified scope for improvement in the management and administration of the Child Support Scheme. Particular areas of audit concern included client service, staff training and debt management. The current audit has reviewed the CSA's progress in improving Agency performance since that time. The audit focused initially on the areas identified in the previous audit, but also sought to identify further opportunities for improvement where appropriate.
The purpose of this follow-up audit was to report on action taken by the Department of Social Security and Centrelink in addressing the recommendations of Audit Report No.23 1993-94 Protection of Confidential Client Information from Unauthorised Disclosure. The objectives were to:
ascertain the extent to which the recommendations of the original audit have been implemented;
identify other changes made in relation to data confidentiality within the Social Security portfolio since 1993;
The objective of the audit was to examine the operations of DEETYA International Services with a view to identifying the administrative issues and difficulties experienced by DEETYA in establishing a commercial entity and its subsequent operation within the framework of the Australian Public Service.
The objective of the audit was to review the efficiency, economy and administrative effectiveness of departmental activities leading to the letting of the contract with SPCL and its subsequent administration. This included, among other things, an examination of action taken to protect the Commonwealth's interests and the adequacy of relevant departmental guidelines and processes. A primary aim of the audit was to identify the facts of the particular case, including any administrative inadequacies that led to unnecessary financial exposure for the Commonwealth and less than satisfactory outcomes. In particular, the audit aimed to identify elements of better practice that could be followed under similar circumstances or programs in the future.
The objective of the audit was to ascertain how efficiently and effectively the ATO administers sales tax collections. The audit excluded an examination of the Australian Customs Service's sales tax administration, although it did examine coordination and liaison arrangements between the ATO and ACS. The audit approach involved analysing the ATO's performance against the five elements of the ATO's established compliance improvement process, namely:
interpreting and clarifying sales tax law;
identifying and understanding clients and markets (enabling tax officers to identify and analyse risks of non-compliance);
providing education and information to clients regarding sales tax obligations, based on identified compliance risks;
implementing administrative arrangements which ensure and/or assist taxpayers to meet their obligations; and
detecting non-compliance and taking action to remedy instances of non-compliance.
The objective of the audit was to report to Parliament on the economy, efficiency and administrative effectiveness of the risk management process in the Small Business Income business line. It follows Audit Report No.37 1996-97 and entitled Risk Management - Australian Taxation Office. That audit focused on broad strategic issues relevant to risk management in the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as a whole. This audit follows the issues identified in that report into the day-to-day management of the Small Business Income as an example of how risk management operates in a significant element of the ATO.
The objective of this audit was to ascertain whether Defence performance management strategies and practices contribute to the effective and efficient management of the supply chain. In particular, it focussed on examining the extent to which the latter demonstrate identified world-class practices.