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Report on performance

Outcome 2-Regional outputs and programmes

Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

Highlights

The Department successfully put forward new policy proposals for the building of a passenger and freight handling facility on Cocos (Keeling) Islands, and secured funding for the removal of asbestos and demolition of a disused precipitator tower on Christmas Island. The Department prepared and successfully negotiated a collective agreement for administration staff on Christmas Island.

The Department hosted a consultative forum of 23 representatives of Aboriginal communities to consider a design concept for a permanent facility at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy site in Canberra.

Overview-Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

Output 2.2.1 is delivered by the Territories and Local Government business division.

Under Output 2.2.1, the Department provides services to all populated Australian territories: the Australian Capital Territory, the Northern Territory, Norfolk Island, the Jervis Bay Territory and the Indian Ocean Territories. The Department also administers the laws governing the uninhabited territories of Ashmore and Cartier Islands and the Coral Sea Islands.

The Department assists the territories to manage their own current and future affairs, manages the Australian Government's interests in the territories and, in the absence of a state or territory government, ensures that appropriate services are effectively delivered to non-self governing territories.

The output includes 11 administered programmes:

  • Christmas Island phosphate mining rehabilitation;
  • Norfolk Island-preservation and maintenance of Kingston and Arthur's Vale Historic Area (KAVHA);
  • Norfolk Island-refurbishment of Kingston Pier;
  • Norfolk Island Memorial for Minister Buffett (environmental trust fund);
  • Office of Administrator on Norfolk Island;
  • Office of Administrator in Northern Territory;
  • Payment to the ACT-assistance for National Capital type functions;
  • Payment to the ACT-assistance for water and sewerage services;
  • Payment to the ACT-compensation for the effects of National Capital influence on the cost of providing municipal services;
  • Services to Indian Ocean Territories (IOTs); and
  • Services to Jervis Bay Territory.

Table 4.12 summarises the output's performance in 2006-07.

he map shows the geographical spread of Australia's territories.
The map shows the geographical spread of Australia's territories. Christmas and Cocos (Keeling) Islands are as far from Perth as the Antarctic ice cap is from Hobart. (Image DOTARS)

Summary of performance-Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

Table 4.12 Summary of performance-Output 2.2.1

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness

Territories are assisted to manage their own futures

The Department maintained a presence in the inhabited territories and administered funding to provide services and development opportunities.

Quality

Australian Government interests in all territories are managed

The Department maintained representation with territory authorities to manage the Australian Government's interests.

In the absence of a state or territory government, non-self governing territories are provided with a range of infrastructure and services:

  • at a reasonable standard and cost compared to similar mainland communities
  • in a way which recognises the cultural and linguistic diversity of territory residents

The Department maintained up-to-date and effective service delivery arrangements and memoranda of understanding with state and local government bodies and private service providers to deliver essential services to communities in non-self governing territories.

The delivery criteria required cost and service level parity with similarly remote communities in mainland Australia.

Community consultation, particularly in the non-self governing territories, assisted the Department in assessing community needs.

Territories funding is administered in line with relevant legislation, policies and agreements

All revenue and expenditure was administered in line with requirements and reported and audited as part of the Department's financial statements.

Location

Self-governing territories: the ACT, Northern Territory and Norfolk Island

Non-self-governing territories: Christmas Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Jervis Bay Territory

Uninhabited territories: Ashmore-Cartier Island and Coral Sea Islands

Where applicable, the Department consulted with the local government, community groups and/or special interest groups with respect to the delivery of services, infrastructure needs and governance issues in these territories.

Price

$9.3 million

The actual price of this output in 2006-07 was $10.9 million.

Overall performance

Detailed report on performance- Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

Overview

Reflecting the differences in governance arrangements, economic capacity and culture, each territory is administered in its own unique way. Table 4.13 summarises some of the features that characterise each territory. Accordingly, in the following detailed report on performance, there is a separate response for each territory for each performance indicator.

Table 4.13 Profile of Australia's territories

Territory Area Population Cultural/linguistic features
Self-governing territories
Australian Capital Territory 2,358 km2 324,034 -
Norfolk Island 35 km2 1,863 -
Northern Territory 1,349,129 km2 192,898 28% indigenous
Non self-governing territories
Christmas Island 135 km2 1,347 60% Chinese-20% Malay
Cocos (Keeling) Islands 14 km2 571 75% Malay
Coral Sea Islands 81 km2 4 Transient
Jervis Bay 73 km2 611 40% Indigenous
Other
Ashmore and Cartier Islands 5 km2 Uninhabited -
Australian Antarctic Territorya 5,896,500 km2 Transient -
Heard and McDonald Islandsa 367 km2 Uninhabited -
All territories 7,248,694 km2 521,790

a Australia's antarctic and subantarctic territories are administered by the Department of the Environment and Water Resources. More information is available from that department's website, www.environment.gov.au.

Effectiveness indicators-Output 2.2.1

Territories are assisted to manage their own futures

Australian Capital Territory

The Australian Capital Territory is a self-governing territory. In 2006-07 the Department:

  • advised ministers on policy matters affecting the Australian Government's interests in the national capital.
  • administered several Australian Government programmes that support the Australian Capital Territory's unique role as the site of the national capital; and
  • advised ministers about the performance of the National Capital Authority, which ensures that Canberra is planned and developed in accordance with its national significance.

Northern Territory

The Northern Territory is a self-governing territory. In 2006-07 the Department:

  • administered loans for assets transferred to the territory when it gained self-government-these loans are mainly for water, sewerage and housing assets;
  • provided input to the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs inquiry into the federal implications of Northern Territory statehood; and
  • supported the Northern Territory Administrator, the Hon Ted Egan AO, whose role is largely equivalent to that of a state governor.

Norfolk Island

Norfolk Island is a self-governing territory located 1,500 kilometres east of Brisbane. As well as administering three Australian Government programmes to benefit the environment and heritage of Norfolk Island in 2006-07, the Department:

  • administered interest-free loans, for a project to stabilise a dangerous cliff face overlooking one of the island's two piers, and for resurfacing the runways of the island's airport;
  • administered the Australian Government's contribution to the Norfolk Island Government to assist with the prosecution of the Janelle Patton murder trial; and
  • supported the Norfolk Island Administrator, the Hon Grant Tambling.

The Australian Government also considered alternative governance arrangements for Norfolk Island in 2006 and decided not to proceed with them.

Jervis Bay Territory

The non-self governing territory of Jervis Bay is located on the New South Wales coast 200 kilometres south of Sydney. In addition to providing state-type services for Jervis Bay in 2006-07, the Department continued to assist the territory by:

  • progressing efforts to resolve a land claim in Jervis Bay by the Wreck Bay Aboriginal community; and
  • chairing or attending community consultation groups covering emergency response, justice issues and public health.

Indian Ocean Territories

The non-self governing Indian Ocean Territories (IOTs) comprise Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands. In addition to providing state-type services for the IOTs in 2006-07, the Department:

  • managed the provision of a state-level legal framework, through the application of Western Australian legislation; and
  • administered a programme to rehabilitate areas of Christmas Island that have been affected by phosphate mining.

Table 4.14 Trends in services to territories

  2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 estimate
Price of output $108.1m $18.5m $18.1m $10.9m $10.8m
Administered expenses
Services to Indian Ocean Territories n/a $75.2m $58.0m $62.9m $84.3m
Australian Capital Territory municipal services $22.1m $22.5m $23.0m $23.5m $24.0m
Australian Capital Territory water and sewerage services $8.9m $9.1m $9.3m $9.4m $9.6m
Christmas Island rehabilitation - - $3.7m $1.1m $1.0m
Services to Jervis Bay Territory - - - $3.5m $5.1m
Other - $0.3m $6.0m $2.7m $2.6m
Total cost of services to territories (departmental and administered) $139.0m $125.6m $118.1m $114.1m $137.2m

Quality indicators-Output 2.2.1

Australian Government interests in all territories are managed

Australian Capital Territory

In 2006-07 the Department's role included:

  • supporting the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads in national consultations about the future of the site of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy; and
  • advising ministers on their obligations under 22 pieces of Australian Capital Territory-related legislation, including legislation on self-government and on cross-border water supply.

Northern Territory

The Department administered funding and support provided to the Northern Territory Administrator when he was acting on behalf of the Australian Government.

Norfolk Island

In addition to advising Australian Government ministers on a range of policy issues related to Norfolk Island during 2006-07, the Department:

  • continued research and policy development on possible governance alternatives for Norfolk Island;
  • coordinated whole-of-government reviews into issues associated with extending all Australian Government laws, programmes and services to Norfolk Island;
  • provided advice to the Norfolk Island community about governance reforms, through a website, newsletter and other means; and
  • prepared advice to the Australian Government on the policy alternatives and the potential impacts of proposed governance changes.

Jervis Bay Territory

The Department ensured that critical infrastructure and services were provided to the Jervis Bay community.

Indian Ocean Territories

In addition to advising Australian Government ministers on a range of policy issues related to the IOTs during 2006-07, the Department:

  • progressed the negotiation of a new collective agreement for IOT employees with the Union of Christmas Island Workers;
  • completed a complex review and evaluation of market-testing outcomes for the IOT Health Service-the resulting recommendation to retain responsibility for the service within the Australian Government was accepted by the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads; and
  • commissioned a consultancy to examine options for increasing the water supply to Home Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

In the absence of a state or territory government, non-self governing territories are provided with a range of infrastructure and services:

  • at a reasonable standard and cost compared to similar mainland communities
  • in a way which recognises the cultural and linguistic diversity of territory residents

 

Jervis Bay Territory

In 2006-07 the Department delivered a range of services to Jervis Bay, including health, education, motor registration, public library and dog control services and utilities such as electricity, water and sewage treatment. In addition, the Department:

  • completed a review of the territory's water supply, identifying critical thresholds for the extraction of water from Lake Windermere; and
  • commenced a review of housing management and rental compliance policies.

Indian Ocean Territories

In 2006-07 the Department provided a range of services to the IOTs, including emergency, health and education and utilities such as ports, airports, power and water.

A total of 32 service delivery arrangements were managed between the Australian Government and the Western Australian Government to provide state-level services. The Department also:

  • continued to manage a number of commercial contractual arrangements with other organisations to provide services to the IOTs;
  • extended a number of critical supply contracts, including power (on Cocos (Keeling) Islands), water and port management;
  • commenced a mammography service on Christmas Island; and
  • commissioned urgent repairs to the tower crane and pedestal at Flying Fish Cove, Christmas Island.

Territories funding is administered in line with relevant legislation, policies and agreements

The Department administered funds for territories, including all administered programme funds, in line with all relevant legislation, policies and agreements in 2006-07.

Overall performance

Overall, the Department successfully delivered services worth $103.2 million to assist in the effective management of Australian territories in 2006-07. As Table 4.14 shows, this was similar to last year's total assistance, although there were some differences in the distribution of funds.

Jukongs are a traditional Cocos Malay sailing craft.
Jukongs are a traditional Cocos Malay sailing craft. They were once the main means of transport on the shallow lagoon and have been influenced by both Scottish and Malay watercraft. The jukongs are now raced for ceremonial purposes during the Hari Raya festival, to celebrate the end of Ramadan, and on Self Determination Day. (Photo courtesy of John Jaycock)

Administered programmes-Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

Table 4.15 Summary of performance-Christmas Island phosphate mining rehabilitationa

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

A robust rehabilitation programme targeting high conservation areas within the Christmas Island National Park

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Department and Parks Australia continued to provide the strategic programme for rehabilitation services within the Christmas Island National Park.

Funding was sourced through a conservation levy charged on phosphate mining tonnage and held in trust by the Department to meet the rehabilitation costs incurred by Parks Australia.

Quality

Rehabilitation of old mine sites on Christmas Island to an agreed standard

The rehabilitation undertaken by Parks Australia was to the standard outlined in the Christmas Island Rainforest Rehabilitation Programme, as agreed in the MOU.

Cost

$1.0 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $1.1 million.

Payments are based on rehabilitation work undertaken by Parks Australia.

Overall performance

a Administered programme name modified in the 2007-08 PBS.

Did you know?

Cocos (Keeling) Islands has a population of 571 people and Christmas Island has a population of 1,347 (ABS data 2006 Census). The Indian Ocean Territories have 13 different religions, 10 languages spoken and 14 nationalities.

Table 4.16 Summary of performance-Norfolk Island-preservation and maintenance of Kingston and Arthur's Vale Historic Area

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness

Australian Government-owned assets and land within the KAVHA precinct is preserved and maintained in accordance with its heritage values

The Department worked with and held membership on the Kingston and Arthur's Vale Historic Area (KAVHA) Management Board to maintain and interpret heritage values on the island.

Quality

Australian Government funding is managed in accordance with the memorandum of understanding with the Norfolk Island Government

Funding provided by the Australian Government is managed by the KAVHA Management Board in accordance with the MOU between the Australian and Norfolk Island governments.

Cost

$0.5 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $0.5 million.

Overall performance

Table 4.17 Summary of performance-Norfolk Island-refurbishment of Kingston Pier

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness

The safety and functionality of the pier is restored in keeping with its heritage valuesa

The Department administered funds provided to the Norfolk Island Government to stabilise and refurbish the historic Kingston Pier to ensure it remains useable. The pier was officially reopened on 6 March 2007.

Quality

Payments are administered in line with project progress

The project was completed within budget and all payments were made on completion of contracted milestones.

Location

Kingston, Norfolk Island

The work was undertaken at Kingston, Norfolk Island.

Cost

$0.3 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $0.1 million.

Project completed under budget.

Overall performance

a Performance indicator modified in the 2007-08 PBS.


Norfolk Island with KAVHA precinct highlighted (Photo DOTARS)

Table 4.18 Summary of performance-Norfolk Island Memorial for Minister Buffett (Environmental Trust Fund)

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

Community groups and individuals are assisted to improve environmental and land management on Norfolk Island

The Department worked with the Norfolk Island Government and the Australian Government Natural Resources Management Team (drawn from the Department of Environment and Water Resources and the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry) to administer the Ivens F (Toon) Buffett Environmental Trust Fund.

Quality

Payments are administered in line with project progress

The Department collected funds from the sale of Crown land on Norfolk Island and deposited them into the Commonwealth Government Official Public Account. An equivalent amount was, in turn, appropriated to the Trust.

Applications for grants under the Trust were assessed by the Trust Board appointed by the Norfolk Island Government and given expert scrutiny by the Natural Resources Management Team.

Cost

$0.1 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $0.1 million.

Payments are driven by the level of revenue receipts from land transfers.

Overall performance

Table 4.19 Summary of performance-Office of Administrator on Norfolk Island

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

Australian Government funding meets the Administrator's salary entitlements, office, relevant travel and other costs

The Department supported the Office of the Norfolk Island Administrator, the Hon Grant Tambling. The office provides, among other things, a shopfront for some Australian Government services, including passport and visa processing.

Quality

Salary paid in accordance with relevant Remuneration Tribunal Determination

Other costs managed within budget

The administrator's salary component was paid fortnightly in accordance with the Remuneration Tribunal Determination.

Other expenses were managed within budget and paid by the Department as they were incurred.

Cost

$0.5 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $0.5 million.

Overall performance

Table 4.20 Summary of performance-Office of Administrator in Northern Territory

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

Australian Government funding meets the Administrator's salary entitlements and relevant travel costs

The Department supported the Northern Territory Administrator, the Hon Ted Egan AO, whose role is largely equivalent to that of a state governor.

Quality

Salary paid in accordance with relevant Remuneration Tribunal Determination

Travel costs associated with Australian Government requirements are paid

The administrator's salary component was paid fortnightly, and his expenses incurred in performing duties on behalf of the Australian Government were paid by reimbursement.

Cost

$0.2 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $0.2 million.

Overall performance

Table 4.21 Summary of performance-Payment to the ACT-assistance for National Capital type functions

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

The ACT Government provides specialised services on behalf of the Australian Government in the ACT

The Department administered payments to the Australian Capital Territory Government as compensation for the following services provided to the Australian Government:

  • registration of diplomatic vehicles;
  • registration of overseas births, deaths and marriages for Australian diplomats;
  • provision of the French-Australian School at Telopea Park School;
  • provision of correspondence lessons for the children of Australian diplomats;
  • conduct of the International Baccalaureate; and
  • maintenance of the Nolan Gallery at Lanyon.

Quality

Payments are made in line with the agreed schedule

The amount payable is based on the estimate made by the Commonwealth Grants Commission when the Australian Capital Territory became self-governing in 1988, and is adjusted for increases in the Wage Cost Index 1.

In 2006-07 the Australian Capital Territory Government received the full assessed amount in fortnightly instalments.

Cost

$1.3 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $1.3 million.

Overall performance

Table 4.22 Summary of performance-Payment to the ACT-assistance for water and sewerage services

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

The ACT Government is compensated for extra costs resulting from national capital influences on the provision of water and sewerage services a

The Department administered payments to the Australian Capital Territory Government as compensation for the higher maintenance and operational costs created by the dispersed nature of the urban development in the territory.

Quality

Payments are made in line with the agreed schedule

The amount payable is based on the estimate made by the Commonwealth Grants Commission when the Australian Capital Territory became self-governing in 1988 and is adjusted for increases in the Wage Cost Index 1.

In 2006-07 the Australian Capital Territory Government received the full assessed amount in fortnightly instalments.

Cost

$9.4 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $9.4 million.

Overall performance

a Performance indicator modified in the 2007-08 PBS.

Table 4.23 Summary of performance-Payment to the ACT-compensation for the effects of national capital influence on the cost of providing municipal services

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness/Location

The national capital influence on the cost of ACT municipal services is ameliorated

The Department administered payments to the Australian Capital Territory Government as compensation for a number of factors, such as rating disability because of the large number of national institutions in the territory, and the extra costs resulting from the design and layout of Canberra as the national capital.

Quality

Payments are made in line with the agreed schedule

The amount payable is based on the estimate made by the Commonwealth Grants Commission when the Australian Capital Territory became self-governing in 1988 and is adjusted for increases in the Wage Cost Index 1.

In 2006-07 the Australian Capital Territory Government received the full assessed amount in fortnightly instalments.

Cost

$23.5 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $23.5 million.

Overall performance

Table 4.24 Summary of performance-Services to Indian Ocean Territories (IOTs)

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness

Territories are assisted to manage their own futures

The Department assessed proposals for economic development initiatives from the economic development committees on both Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands, and administered funding for projects approved by the Minister.

Quality

In the absence of a state or territory government, IOT residents and visitors are provided with a range of infrastructure and services:

  • at a reasonable standard and cost compared to similar mainland communities
  • in a way which recognises the cultural and linguistic diversity of residents and visitors

The Department continued to support the Office of the Administrator, Mr Neil Lucas PSM. The administrator is the Australian Government's representative in the IOTs.

The Department also managed the state-type grants programme that provides the IOT communities with equivalent access to a wide range of grant funding, based on Western Australian state government programmes.

Newsletters and publications were produced in community languages, translators were used for community meetings and support was provided for students from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds at the schools.

Quantity/Location

Approximately 2,100 people live in the IOTs, namely on Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands

The Department continued to manage a portfolio of properties on behalf of the Australian Government in 2006-07. This included the:

  • continued maintainence and upgrade programme of Australian Government housing and commercial buildings on Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Christmas Island; and
  • remediation of the old Home Island power station site on Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

Cost

$72.6 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $62.9 million.

The underspend is due to delays in the works programmes on the IOTs due to limited island resources. Approval has been provided to move funds to 2007-08.

Overall performance

Table 4.25 Summary of performance-Services to Jervis Bay Territory

PBS/PAES performance indicators Results

Effectiveness

Accountable governance, administration and provision of services in the territory

The Department delivered services to the Jervis Bay Territory either directly, through the private sector or through the New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory governments.

Quality

In the absence of a state or territory government, Jervis Bay Territory residents and visitors are provided with a range of infrastructure and services:

  • at a reasonable standard and cost compared to similar communities a
  • in a way which recognises the cultural diversity of residents and visitors a

In 2006-07 the Department delivered a range of services on behalf of the Australian Government, including health, education, motor registration, public library, dog control, electricity, and water and sewage treatment services.

In providing essential services, the Department:

  • spent approximately $3.5 million and collected $0.7 million in fees for services including rent, electricity and water charges; and
  • convened a number of community forums to ensure that appropriate services were provided to the Indigenous community.

Quantity/Location

Approximately 611 people live in the Jervis Bay Territory

Cost

$5.0 million

The actual cost of this programme in 2006-07 was $3.5 million.

The underspend is due to maintenance programmes for Australian Government owned rental homes being delayed by late delivery of condition reports and delayed invoices for welfare services provided by the ACT Government.

Overall performance

a Performance indicator modified in the 2007-08 PBS

Outlook-Output 2.2.1-Services to territories

In 2007-08 the Department's priorities under Output 2.2.1 will include:

  • preserving and maintaining the Australian Government-owned assets within the Kingston and Arthur's Vale Historic Area precinct on Norfolk Island;
  • negotiating memoranda of understanding for service delivery to the Jervis Bay Territory;
  • supporting a review by the Commonwealth Grants Commission of funding model requirements for the IOTs;
  • finalising the collective agreement for IOT employees;
  • implementing strategic health reforms in the IOT Health Service, including the recruitment of key personnel to implement and drive the reforms;
  • submitting recommendations to the government on ways to overcome the water shortage on Home Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands;
  • commencing projects to deliver a passenger and freight facility at Rumah Baru on West Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands; and
  • managing the removal of asbestos from Australian Government properties in the IOTs, including by demolishing a precipitator tower that presents a significant asbestos risk.

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