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Australian National Audit Office report on the Norfolk Island reforms

The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) audit report on design, implementation and monitoring of the Norfolk Island reforms has been published.

The outcomes of the ANAO audit were tabled in parliament. A copy of the report is available on the ANAO’s website at www.anao.gov.au/pubs.

In early 2018, ANAO commenced an audit to determine whether the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development (Department) designed and implemented appropriate governance and administrative arrangements for the transition and delivery of sustainable reforms to services on Norfolk Island. The Department has been working with the ANAO on the audit since this time.

The ANAO audit has highlighted the complex nature of the Norfolk Island reforms.  New Commonwealth services are now being delivered on Norfolk Island and significant investments are being made in improving existing services and the physical infrastructure on Norfolk Island.  Significant challenges still exist, particularly in the area of engaging a long term partner to deliver state type government services on Norfolk Island.

The ANAO found much has worked with the Department’s management of the Norfolk Island reforms.  The Department was found to have established an effective governance arrangement for the management of reforms on Norfolk Island.  The ANAO also found that the Department had effective arrangements in place for the delivery of local government services and establishing the Norfolk Island Regional Council.

The ANAO audit has identified areas where the Department can improve and has made four recommendations.  These recommendations relate to business and risk planning and undertaking a formal evaluation of the Norfolk Island reforms.

The Department acknowledges the findings from the ANAO and has already identified areas of improvement and taken steps to address many of the issues raised by the ANAO in how it delivers the Norfolk Island reforms.

The Department has already committed to undertaking a formal evaluation of the Norfolk Island reforms in 2019-20 and is committed to working with the Norfolk Island community and ensuring the implementation of the reforms on Norfolk Island continue to make it a great place to live.