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Major budget variances

This section provides explanations for major budget variances between the department’s budget and actual results for the year ended 30 June 2019.

Note 16: Departmental budget variances commentary

Note 16 Departmental budget variances commentary

Explanations of major variances

Affected statements and line items

Employee benefits

Employee benefits were lower than originally budgeted as a number of positions remained vacant throughout the reporting period due to delays in recruitment processes. In addition, the staffing complement required throughout the final year of the parliamentary cycle and leading up to and during the federal election was less than anticipated at the time of budgeting. This resulted in a lower average staffing level than was budgeted.

Statement of comprehensive income:

  • employee benefits expense

Statement of financial position:

  • employee provisions
  • trade and other receivables (in respect of undrawn appropriation)

Cash flow statement:

  • operating cash used—employees
  • operating cash received—appropriations.

Extension of parliamentary capacity-building program funding

On 31 May 2018 the department agreed to an extension of its memorandum of understanding with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for capacity-building work in Fiji. This work was originally due to complete on 30 June 2018 and as such no revenue was budgeted for the 2018–19 financial year. The extension of the contract has resulted in unbudgeted revenue being attributed against relevant expenses (primarily travel) during the 2018–19 financial year. The unspent portion of the funding remains unearned as at balance date and is recorded as unearned revenue.

Statement of comprehensive income:

  • other revenue
  • suppliers

Statement of financial position:

  • payables—other payables (unearned revenue)

Cash flow statement:

  • operating cash used—suppliers
  • operating cash received—revenue from external sources

Transfer of assets to DPS

In June 2018 the department transferred computer software assets to DPS under an arrangement to consolidate information and communications technology assets across the parliament. This transfer was not confirmed at the time of budgeting for the 2018–19 financial year in March 2018 and was therefore not included in budgeted figures.

On 1 December 2018 the department transferred furniture to DPS as part of the consolidation of status B furniture across the parliamentary departments. This transfer was not known at the time of budgeting and was therefore not included in budgeted figures. This transfer has also impacted the department’s budgeted revaluation surplus as it was anticipated that the now transferred furniture items would increase in value and offset any other decrements.

Statement of financial position:

  • computer software
  • plant and equipment

Statement of changes in equity:

  • contributed equity—transactions with owners

Statement of comprehensive income:

  • depreciation and amortisation
  • changes in asset revaluation surplus.