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Hawke review calls for single mega-department in the ACTPS

johnboy 15 February 2011 24

ACT PS

Chief Minister Stanhope has announced the outcomes of the Hawke Review:

A major independent review of the ACT Public Service has recommended it be restructured as a single department, to reflect the city-state nature of the ACT and to allow for greater coordination between areas of the bureaucracy.

A number of “Directorates” would sit within the single department, but all would ultimately report to a single Chief Executive. The single department would allow the public service to better reflect whole-of-government priorities and work as a single agency.

Chief Minister Jon Stanhope today released in full the findings of the review, which was carried out over the past six months by former Commonwealth departmental secretary Dr Allan Hawke.

Mr Stanhope said the Government accepted the wisdom of the report in its totality and would immediately establish a high-level implementation taskforce within the ACT Public Service to work through each of the specific recommendations, advise on necessary legislative changes, timing and funding implications.

Key structural changes proposed by the Review involve:

    — combining the current Chief Minister’s Department and Department of Treasury in a deliberately powerful centre to the ACTPS, along with the Economic Development Directorate – the head of which would be called Coordinator-General and continue that function which was so successful in delivering economic stimulus measures in 2009-10 – responsible for the land release program, business and industry support, tourism, and skills and workforce development in the broader ACT economy;

    — consolidating responsibility for events management within the proposed Chief Minister’s Department;

    — locating Canberra Connect with whole of government communications in the proposed Chief Minister’s Department;

    — transferring Shared Services to the Finance Directorate;

    — refocusing the Territory and Municipal Services Directorate solely on municipal services;

    — creating the Sustainable Development Directorate comprising the Department of the Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water, ACT Planning and Land Authority, and fragmented functions in the land and planning sphere including the Government Architect, the Heritage Unit, and responsibility for transport planning; and

    — enhancing the role and functions of the Office of Regulatory Services to include transport regulation and occupational licensing.


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24 Responses to
Hawke review calls for single mega-department in the ACTPS
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Peewee Slasher 3:04 pm 16 Feb 11

Madame Workalot said :

rosscoact said :

I just thought I’d throw in something I heard the other day.

The ACT Government has a wider range and more responsibilities than any other government in Australia

No actually, it’s not. The Norfolk Island Government has the widest range of responsibilities of any state or territory government in Australia.

Not for long

Muttsybignuts 2:47 pm 16 Feb 11

So, in the course of my job today I come across a tradesman. He is grumbling because he came to work today in his shiny new LAPS ( have I got this right?) polo shirt, only to be told “Go home, take it off we are back to TAMs”. He tells me he, and everyone else, has just been issued with 3 sets of LAPS branded uniforms that he can now throw in the bin.
And the cost of these changes will be neutral?
I love it when I hear great stories like this that make me feel happy that my taxes are used so effectively.

housebound 10:30 am 16 Feb 11

On reflection, I can’t see that this will change much. The chief exec will almost certainly be a political appointee and any pretence of a PS acting without fear or favour will disappear.

Madame Workalot 8:12 am 16 Feb 11

rosscoact said :

I just thought I’d throw in something I heard the other day.

The ACT Government has a wider range and more responsibilities than any other government in Australia

No actually, it’s not. The Norfolk Island Government has the widest range of responsibilities of any state or territory government in Australia.

taninaus 7:49 am 16 Feb 11

astrojax said :

his chiefliness argues that no jobs will go – what about the efficiencies gained in human resources and pay areas – surely many of the individual areas in each of the current ministries will become redundant if there is a centralised system..?

AJ – ACTPS has already been down that path, we have a centralised section called Shared Services that covers off most HR services, IT and Procurement. Most of what is already in Depts will be required by Divisions anyway. The areas I wonder about are ministerial coordination (that will be a job to pick and use a central system to manage these, assuming that is the intent). Also the culture of having been Depts for 20+ years – the one Government intent will take a while to bed down.

JB – in the report it indicates the ministers will still have portfolio responsibilities, they just won’t have to worry about Chief Execs as such. If they are responsibile for an area I don’t imagine the ability for ministers to direct how particular issues will be managed will change either.

grass 5:28 am 16 Feb 11

The Report’s comments on ACTION are interesting. Basically says if the the union won’t let the Government manage the company it should be privatised.

richie51felix 11:04 pm 15 Feb 11

This is a godd development . With a single Chief, fingerpointing between departments will be minimized and the rule of command responsibility will be in effect. http://www.genitalherpesinmen.net/..

astrojax 10:38 pm 15 Feb 11

his chiefliness argues that no jobs will go – what about the efficiencies gained in human resources and pay areas – surely many of the individual areas in each of the current ministries will become redundant if there is a centralised system..?

olfella 9:43 pm 15 Feb 11

A number of “Directorates” would sit within the single department, but all would ultimately report to a single Chief Executive. The single department would allow the public service to better reflect whole-of-government priorities and work as a single agency

One ‘boss’ but several silos – never worked before and will not now. Classic example is the failed Shared Services with its services duplicated in all depts.

screaming banshee 4:45 pm 15 Feb 11

OK, but when will they mow the grass?

Dante 3:34 pm 15 Feb 11

Sounds fantastic.

Holden Caulfield 3:33 pm 15 Feb 11

rosscoact said :

I just thought I’d throw in something I heard the other day.

The ACT Government has a wider range and more responsibilities than any other government in Australia

Until it tries to introduce a new law that the feds don’t like.

Fiona 3:18 pm 15 Feb 11

astrojax said :

johnboy said :

One wonders what all of Mr Stanhope’s Ministers will think about getting their departments taken away from them?

‘ministries’ – ‘divisions’; what’s in a name? little to be lost, much to be gained – they are just a glorified council after all…

Pay ministers more than division leaders?

astrojax 3:04 pm 15 Feb 11

johnboy said :

One wonders what all of Mr Stanhope’s Ministers will think about getting their departments taken away from them?

‘ministries’ – ‘divisions’; what’s in a name? little to be lost, much to be gained – they are just a glorified council after all…

rosscoact 2:59 pm 15 Feb 11

I just thought I’d throw in something I heard the other day.

The ACT Government has a wider range and more responsibilities than any other government in Australia

johnboy 2:50 pm 15 Feb 11

Keijidosha said :

So the suggestion is that the ACT Government, which is a glorified county council, should be structured more like… a county council?

It’s a promising move isn’t it?

Keijidosha 2:45 pm 15 Feb 11

So the suggestion is that the ACT Government, which is a glorified county council, should be structured more like… a county council?

Muttsybignuts 2:45 pm 15 Feb 11

Can I be a General?

TVStar 2:33 pm 15 Feb 11

“Key Findings
The Review has concluded that the ACTPS is not broken.”

Starting from a high base then. lol.

georgesgenitals 2:19 pm 15 Feb 11

FFS, the end result will be much the same as what we have now, but with some different names and new reporting lines. Ultimately, the govt has a series of services to deliver. These big changes rarely result in genuine efficiency gains, and usually do enough to disrupt business as usual so as to mitigate any benefits anyway.

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