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The objective of the audit was to determine whether the controls and measures employed by FaCS and Centrelink to deliver Parenting Payment Single (PPS) payments were effective and efficient. To achieve this, the audit focused on four key areas. These were:
the quality of performance measures used by FaCS and Centrelink;
the effectiveness of FaCS' methodology for estimating the levels of risk of incorrect payment to PPS customers and the impact of these incorrect payments on the integrity of program outlays;
the correctness of Centrelink's processing of reassessments; and
the improvements to preventive controls such as training, guidance material, and the Quality On-Line system.
The audit assessed the operations of the four Northern Territory Land Councils which provide a range of services to Aboriginal people under the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976. The audit also assessed the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commision's (ATSIC) administration of the Aboriginals Benefit Account, which provides funding to the Land Councils under the same Act. The objectives of the audit were to assess:
whether the governance arrangements used by ATSIC and the Land Councils are appropriate;
whether ATSIC meets its legislative requirements concerning the Aboriginals Benefit Account in an effective and efficient way; and
whether the Land Councils are effective and efficient in managing their recourses to meet the objectives of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976.
The objective of the audit was to assess whether the controls employed by the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) and Centrelink to ensure the correctness of payments made under the Age Pension program were effective and efficient. The ANAO focused on:
business arrangements between FACS and Centrelink and the Business Assurance Framework;
whether the source of error was correctly attributed in customer records assessed by FACS and Centrelink as containing an error in the 2000-01 Age Pension Random Sample Survey:
the correctness of Centrelink's processing of reassessments, including Pensioner Entitlements Reviews, Customer Initiated Reassessments and automated reassessments: and
progress in implementing the recommendations of previous ANAO audits concerning the preventive quality controls that underpin correct payments.
In 1997-98, the ANAO audited the Child Support Agency (CSA), making 12 recommendations to improve its operational performance. A related report by the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit supported the general findings of the ANAO audit and reinforced three ANAO recommendations in its own report. The audit examined client service in the CSA by following-up the CSA's implementation of the recommendations contained in these two previous reports and more broadly assessing whether the CSA had improved the management and delivery of its client service sine the previous ANAO audit.
The audit examined the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission's (ATSIC's) grant management practices. The audit sought to determine if ATSIC provides fair and equal access to funding, what the risks to the grants program are, if decision-makers receive the key information they need to make informed funding decisions, and if ATSIC staff complying with grants procedures. The ANAO did not examine the appropriateness of the funding decisions made by regional councils.
The objective of this audit was to form an opinion on the adequacy of, and to identify best practice in, Commonwealth agencies' electricity procurement systems and procedures. In doing so, the ANAO also formed an opinion on the level and results of participation by Commonwealth agencies in the National Electricity Market. The audit concentrated on adherence by agencies to the principles of the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines: Core Policies and Principles (March 1998), emphasising the importance of Commonwealth agencies achieving value-for-money (VFM) in their purchasing. VFM is one of the six principles on which the Guidelines are based.
The audit reviewed the operations of the Bureau of Meteorology. The Bureau's functions include the taking and recording of meteorological observations and other observations required for the purposes of meteorology; the forecasting of weather and of the state of the atmosphere; the issue of warnings of weather conditions likely to endanger life or property; the supply, publication and promotion of meteorological information; and cooperation with international meteorological agencies in relation to the functions just listed. The objectives of the audit were to:
use national and international benchmarks to evaluate the Bureau's performance in terms of timeliness, cost and quality of weather services to meet the needs of clients; and
assess how well the Bureau is placed in measuring its outputs/outcomes within the context of the Accrual Budgeting Framework.
Special Benefit is a social security income support payment for people who are unable to support themselves or their dependents, and who are not otherwise entitled to any other income support payment. Its objective is to ensure that such people have adequate levels of income. The objective of the audit was to assess the extent to which new claims for Special Benefit had been determined in compliance with the Social Security Act, the Guide to the Act and other relevant guidelines, and whether Centrelink and FaCS had appropriate procedures to help ensure such compliance.
The audit reviewed the Commonwealth-State Housing Agreement (CSHA). CSHA is a joint arrangement between the Commonwealth and the States under which both the Commonwealth and the States contribute funding in the form of grants, which are used by State Housing Authorities to provide a variety of housing assistance programs to households on low incomes and those with special needs. The overall objective of the audit was to assess and report to Parliament on how effectively the Department of Family and Community Services (FaCS - formerly the Department of Social Security) administered the CSHA and to identify any areas where improvements could be made.
The audit reviewed the National Aboriginal Health Strategy (NAHS) component of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission's (ATSIC) Community Housing Infrastructure Program (CHIP). A major NAHS objective is to improve environmental health in indigenous communities through the construction and housing and the provision of water, sewerage and related systems. The objective of the performance audit was to form an opinion on ATSIC's management of the National Aboriginal Health Strategy program in providing housing and related infrastructure to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, and to identify areas where program administration could be improved.