Today the first of a series of performance audits of the ACT Asbestos Response Taskforce was tabled by the Auditor-General, and it shows that the Taskforce’s approach to governance and risk management is effective and reflects better practice.
Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations Mick Gentleman, said the report which examined the financial and governance arrangements for the delivery of the Loose Fill Asbestos Insulation Eradication Scheme, provided a strong level of assurance and confidence that the Scheme was being delivered in an efficient and effective manner.
“This report reflects the sound planning and management of the financial arrangements for the Scheme as well as the Taskforce’s approach to governance and risk management which has been described in the report as reflecting ‘better practice’,” Minister Gentleman said.
“Often reports by auditors-general highlight areas for improvement. In this case, the Government welcomes and endorses the Auditor-General’s conclusion that the Taskforce’s approach to its work demonstrates leading practice in implementing a program of unprecedented scale and complexity for the ACT Public Service”.
“This report demonstrates that the Government continues to deliver on its commitment of eradicating Mr Fluffy from our community, in not only a safe manner but one which has strong frameworks in place around its operation and delivery.” Minister Gentleman added.
The Auditor-General provided three recommendations in the report – all of which amount to continuing work already underway.
The recommendations included:
- providing detail of revenue and costs (including borrowing costs) of the Loose fill Asbestos Insulation Eradication Scheme in Budget Papers which is underway;
- the financial impact of the Scheme to be included in future financial statements which is also agreed and will occur;
- and notes that the Taskforce was formed as an emergency response, the need to complete a migration of records onto an online record system by the end of 2016. A process was identified by the Taskforce before this audit process began, and is well underway.
Minister Gentleman said the release of the report provides a timely opportunity to reflect on the significant achievements of the Taskforce over the past two years.
“It is important to remember that just under two years ago the Taskforce was formed to respond to the complex and challenging legacy issue of Mr Fluffy in our community,” Minister Gentleman said.
“In that time the Taskforce has provided comprehensive advice to Government on how to eradicate this issue, has developed and implemented the Buyback Program which allowed owners to move to safer accommodation and the Demolition Program which is safely removing these houses from our suburbs.
“The Taskforce has also provided intensive support to those affected and information and education to the wider community while also working closely with industry to ensure this program achieves the best outcomes for the community.
“This report shows that this work has also been undertaken with strong governance, financial and risk controls.
“The community can take great confidence from this report and I would like to thank the Taskforce for their ongoing work in delivering this significant response to the community in a coordinated, compassionate as well as robust way.” Minister Gentleman concluded.
- Statement ends -
Section: Mick Gentleman, MLA | Media Releases