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The audit followed-up the ANAO's original audit report into the aviation safety regulatory activities of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) (Audit Report No.19 1999-2000 Aviation Safety Compliance). The objective of the follow-up audit were to determine, in respect of issues addressed by the original audit recommendations, whether CASA has made satisfactory progress to improve its aviation safety surveillance and compliance activities; and whether the introduction of new strategies for further improvement is being appropriately managed.
The audit examined the administrative processes that the department has in place to support the administration of RAP. The objective of the audit was to determine whether funding was being allocated in accordance with the RAP policy guidelines and whether the department was managing RAP contracts to ensure that desired outcomes are achieved
The audit was undertaken following advice from the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit (JCPAA) to the Auditor-General that assurance that ABC programming adequately reflects the ABC's Charter was an audit priority of Parliament. The objective of the audit is to provide Parliament with this assurance. The focus of the audit was on the governance arrangements of the ABC Board and management that enable the ABC to demonstrate the extent to which it is achieving its' Charter obligations, and other related statutory requirements, efficiently and effectively. The scope of the audit was as follows:
Review the ABC's corporate governance framework against better practice models. The ANAO had regard to the ABC's unique role as a national public broadcaster established as a budget funded Commonwealth statutory authority subject to the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997.
Examine the ABC Board's approach to the interpretation of the Charter requirements of the ABC and the setting of strategic directions, and management's administrative arrangements for implementing the strategic directions established by the Board.
Examine the ABC's performance information framework, the development, documentation and use of performance measures in relation to targets and/or objectives, the monitoring and reporting of performance and its' inter-relationship with the corporate planning and budgetary processes, particularly in relation to the strategic directions set by the Board.
The audit did not examine the overall management of the ABC. In keeping with the audit scope, the audit examined ways in which the ABC aligns its' strategic directions with its' Charter requirements for programs broadcast on radio, television and on-line and assures itself, and Parliament, about the achievement of its' Charter obligations. Further, the audit did not examine the operations of ABC Enterprises or symphony orchestras that operate as ABC-owned subsidiary companies.
The audit reviewed the use of taxis in six Commonwealth agencies. The objective of the audit was to provide assurance that organisations were effectively managing associated risks and complying with legislation and guidelines in relation to the use of, and payment for taxi services.
The audit reviewed the broadcasting planning and licensing operations of the Australian Broadcasting Authority, which is responsible for planning the availability of segments of the broadcasting services bands used by radio and television for analogue and digital broadcasting. The objective was to assess the ABA's management of licence area planning and the subsequent issue of broadcasting licences, focussing on analogue radio planning and identifying improved administrative practices, where possible, together with the main factors that have contributed to the delays to date in achieving the planning timetable.
The ANAO reviewed arrangements for the development of the department's fraud policy, fraud risk assessment and fraud control plan within the core functional areas of the department that are responsible for these activities. The audit also examined the operational procedures and guidelines that were in place to implement the department's fraud policy. The objective of the audit was to assess whether AFFA has implemented appropriate fraud control arrangements in line with the Fraud Control Policy of the Commonwealth and whether these arrangements operate effectively in practice.
Aviation traffic data plays an important role in informing decisions about the safety of the airways system, including such matters as the need for navigation facilities, communication links, air traffic control towers and rescue/fire fighting services. The objective of the limited scope audit was to examine the accuracy of the data on air traffic movements collected by Airservices Australia.
Quarantine policies and operations are the responsibility of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry - Australia (AFFA). The objective of this audit was to assess AFFA's management of plant and animal quarantine services, and the implementation and impact of the Government Response (1997) to the Quarantine Review Committee Report. The audit in particular assessed the setting of quarantine priorities through assessing and managing risk; management of the continuum of quarantine operations; and management of Import Risk Analyses to deliver and review quarantine policies. Stakeholder consultation and advisory processes were also assessed in addressing these issues. A key issue examined was the effectiveness of AFFA quarantine operations in international mail and airports preventing the entry of quarantinable material. The ANAO made eight recommendations aimed at improving operational risk based resource allocation; pre-border management of quarantine risk; the effectiveness of quarantine operations at the Australian border; and priority setting and transparency of the IRA process. AFFA agreed to all eight ANAO recommendations.
The audit examined the design, management and reporting of performance information for the Natural Heritage Trust (NHT) which is administered by the Commonwealth Departments of Environment and Heritage, and Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. The objective of the audit was to examine and report on the performance information used to support the administration of $1.5 billion in Commonwealth financial assistance; and compliance with legislative requirements for performance monitoring and reporting.
ANAO found that the actions taken by the Department during the course of the audit to update and improve the Notes on Administration and administrative processes, by commissioning various specialist studies and reviewing governance issues, has established a sound basis for ongoing effective management of the National Highway System. The Department advised ANAO that changes to the Notes on Administration reflect joint work done with the ANAO to identify where improvements could be made and incorporate not only suggestions and recommendations that the ANAO has made in the final report but also during the audit. ANAO considers that the comprehensive revision of the Notes on Administration undertaken by the Department should foster marked improvements in the management of the National Highway System.