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The audit objective was to assess whether agreements between Australian Government (Commonwealth) agencies reflect sound administrative practices. To meet this objective, the audit reviewed current government policy and a range of better practice guidelines, conducted interviews with agencies and examined cross-agency agreements, to formulate suitable audit criteria and subsequently develop better practice principles.
The objective of the audit was to assess the effectiveness of security awareness and training arrangements at selected Australian Government organisations, including whether they addressed selected security issues from the PSM.
The Senate Order for Departmental and Agency Contracts (the Senate Order/the Order) was introduced in June 2001. The Order is one of several measures that the Senate introduced in recent years, to improve public knowledge of information on procurement and the expenditure of public funds. The main principle that underpins the Senate Order is that the Parliament's and public's access to this information should not be restricted by the inclusion of confidential information in contracts unless there is a sound basis for doing so. Public knowledge of information on contracted goods and services delivered to the government, can lead to better results for the Australian Government and the public. The Senate Order requirements have been amended over time to improve agency reporting, for example, on grants.
The focus of this audit was on those entitlements administered by Finance. Similar to the 2001-02 Audit Report, the audit scope did not include entitlements provided to persons employed under the Members of Parliament (Staff) Act 1984 (MOP(S) Act). It also did not examine the administration of entitlements provided through other agencies (such as Parliamentarians' salary and electorate allowance, which are paid by the Chamber Departments, and entitlements provided to Ministers by their home department).
As an element of the arrangements implemented to support the role of the ANAO in reviewing campaigns' compliance with the Guidelines announced on 2 July 2008, the ANAO advised the chair of the JCPAA that the ANAO will provide regular summary reports to Parliament. Section 25 of the Auditor-General's Act 1997 provides for the tabling of such reports.