Administration of Parliamentary Expenses by the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority
Why did we do this audit?
- Reforms to the parliamentary entitlements system were enacted in 2017–18, designed to increase clarity for parliamentarians, and transparency and accountability for the general public.
- As the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority (IPEA) has been operational for over three years, it is timely to review whether it undertook its legislative functions in an effective and efficient manner, and contributed to the intent of the 2017–18 reforms.
- IPEA was established as an executive body on 3 April 2017, and as a statutory agency on 1 July 2017.
- The principles-based Parliamentary Business Resources Act 2017 came into effect on 1 January 2018.
- In 2019–20, IPEA had an operational budget of $14.2 million, and processed 143,176 travel claims.
What did we find?
- IPEA’s administration of parliamentary expenses has been largely effective.
- IPEA has been effective at providing travel advice to parliamentarians and processing travel claims.
- IPEA’s assurance framework is not informed by an assessment of compliance risk and visibility over relevant expenses administered by other entities.
- IPEA’s public reporting of parliamentary expenditure has contributed to improving the transparency of the expenses framework.
What did we recommend?
- The Auditor-General made four
recommendations to IPEA to strengthen:
- business risk management;
- compliance risk assessment;
- assurance activity planning; and
- performance measurement.
- IPEA agreed to all four recommendations.
Travel expenses administered by IPEA in 2019–20.
Value of non-compliance identified by IPEA’s assurance activities in 2019–20.
Parliamentarians who certified their listed expenditure was within the legislated purpose for the Apr-Jun 2020 quarterly expenditure report.