Annual performance statements

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Introductory statement

I, as the accountable authority of the Department of Finance, present the 2015–16 annual performance statements of the Department of Finance, as required under section 39(1)(a) of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act). In my opinion, these annual performance statements are based on properly maintained records, accurately reflect the performance of the department, and comply with section 39(2) of the PGPA Act.

Jane Halton, Secretary, 3 October 2016


Purpose: Budget and financial advice, management and reporting—support the government to deliver its fiscal targets and policy objectives (relates to Outcome 1)

Results

Performance criterion

Analysis, policy advice and costing information provided to the Finance Minister and the Expenditure Review Committee of Cabinet as part of budget and financial reporting processes are relevant, accurate, evidence-based and timely.

Result against performance criterion

Achieved

Finance provided advice to the Finance Minister and Expenditure Review Committee of Cabinet that was relevant to government considerations, accurate, evidence-based, delivered within agreed timeframes and consistent with government-agreed processes. Finance prepared and provided over 100 briefs to support the deliberations of the Expenditure Review Committee of Cabinet.

Performance criterion

Advice is objective and based on a thorough understanding of issues from a whole-of-Australian Government (WoAG) perspective.

Result against performance criterion

Achieved

Independent advice, from a WoAG perspective, was provided to the Finance Minister and Expenditure Review Committee of Cabinet based on information gathered through consultations with entities and other stakeholders. During the development of the 2016–17 Budget, Finance verified approximately 740 policy costings for accuracy and overall alignment with the policy’s intent and validated 9,060 estimates adjustments entered by agencies into the Central Budget Management System.

Performance criterion

Accurate budget estimates measured as follows (after allowing for the effects of policy decisions movements in economic parameters and changes in accounting treatments):

  • 2.0 per cent difference between first forward year estimated expenses and final outcome
  • 1.5 per cent difference between budget estimated expenses and final outcome
  • 1.0 per cent difference between revised estimated expenses at Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) and Final Budget Outcome (FBO)
  • 0.5 per cent difference between revised estimated expenses at budget and FBO.

Result against performance criterion

Partially achieved

The difference between first forward year estimated expenses and FBO was –1.9 per cent on an accrual basis and -2.0 per cent on a cash payments basis.

The difference between budget estimated expenses and FBO was –1.5 per cent on an accrual basis and -1.9 per cent on a cash payments basis.

The difference between revised estimated expenses at MYEFO and FBO was –0.9 per cent on an accrual basis and -1.2 per cent on a cash payments basis.

The difference between revised estimated expenses at budget and FBO was –0.6 per cent on an accrual basis and -0.4 per cent on a cash payments basis.

One element of this criterion was fully achieved and three elements were partially achieved. Variations between the estimates and final outcome were due to unpredictable delays in the achievement of project milestones under a range of national partnership agreements and changes in some program-specific parameters. Program estimates are regularly reviewed and updated to take account of the best available information to maximise their reliability and accuracy.

Performance criterion

The budget, related updates and the government’s financial statements are accurate (taking into account, to the fullest extent possible, all government decisions and other circumstances that may have a material effect) and delivered within required timeframes, and meet the government’s legislative obligations.

Result against performance criterion

Achieved

The 2016–17 Budget was delivered on 3 May 2016.

The 2015–16 MYEFO was delivered on 15 December 2015.

The 2014–15 FBO was published on 21 September 2015, within the legislated timeframe and with audit-cleared financial statements for all material entities. The results were consistent with the subsequent audited consolidated financial statements.

Since FBO, the monthly financial statements were delivered, on average, to the Finance Minister within 21 days of each month end.

The consolidated financial statements were provided to the Auditor-General on 30 November 2015, within the legislated timeframe. They were audit-cleared with one exception for the fair value measurement of specialist military equipment assets. This matter related to a technical accounting measurement issue. Specialist military equipment assets were measured at cost, which was consistent with the treatment in prior years. The accuracy of the budget, related updates and government financial statements was demonstrated by the previous performance criterion.

Performance criterion

The derived underlying cash balance is provided to government within five days of the end of the financial year.

Result against performance criterion

Achieved

The 2014–15 derived underlying cash balance was provided to the government within five days of the end of the financial year.

Performance criterion

The government’s cash requirements are met on a daily basis, ensuring the ongoing operations of government.

Result against performance criterion

Achieved

The government’s cash requirements were met on every day of 2015–16.

Analysis of budget purpose performance

See the overarching analysis of performance at the end of these annual performance statements.

Last updated: 06 February 2017