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COMMISSION OF AUDIT

On 28 March 2012 the new government formed a Commission of Audit whose mandate is to report on five areas:

  • Queensland’s financial position;
  • measures that could be taken to improve Queensland’s financial position;
  • service delivery (including “procurement, corporate services and asset management” and “strategies to encourage greater private sector involvement in the funding and/or direct provision of public infrastructure and services”)
  • the financial position of government-owned corporations (GOCs) and commercial agencies;
  • the Queensland economy in general what actions could be taken to increase Queensland’s economic growth.

The Commission is set to deliver an interim report on 15 June 2012. A new state budget will be handed down by the Treasurer on 11 September 2012.

Interim recommendations from the Commission will be delivered 30 November 2012 and the Commission’s final report will be delivered in February 2013.

Given the Commission’s terms of composition and terms of reference it is likely that there will be recommendations relating to the privatising and outsourcing of procurement, corporate services, and other service delivery functions.

The Commission is likely to function in a similar way to the 1996 Commission of Audit by the newly elected Howard government. This report recommended that government should remove itself from a large swath of service provision.

Similarly the Borbidge government’s Commission of Audit, held at approximately the same time for the Queensland government, “discussed policy areas and the responsibilities of the state departments, and seemed to be based on a set of agendas currently in vogue in the Queensland Treasury. This section advocated far more outsourcing of services, more user charging and more efficient use of public assets.” (source)

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