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The overall objective of the audit was to assess whether the RSS Programme is effective and efficient in providing assurance on the levels of payment error and the resultant risks to the integrity of Australian Government outlays for payments administered by Centrelink. Specifically, the audit assessed whether: the RSS Programme meets the objectives outlined for it in the Portfolio Budget Statements under which funding was provided; there is an adequate methodology underpinning the RSS reviews; the RSS reviews are conducted effectively and efficiently, and adequate quality assurance mechanisms exist to assure the results obtained from the RSS reviews; and reporting by the agencies of the results of the RSS Programme is adequate and takes into consideration the issues identified in Audit Report No. 44 2002–03 Review of the Parenting Payment Single Program, and Audit Report No. 17 2002–03 Age Pension Entitlements.
Parliamentary Committees, particularly Senate Estimates Committees, have for many years taken an interest in the use of consultants by Australian government agencies. In this context, and having regard to the extent of expenditure by FMA Act agencies on consultants, the objective of this audit was to assess the accuracy and completeness of Australian government agencies' reporting of expenditure on consultants.