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The PGPA Act and Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Rules state which powers and functions the accountable authority may delegate. The accountable authority has, in writing, delegated certain powers and functions to officials. The delegate does not have the power to sub delegate without a specific provision in legislation.

Accountable authority instructions

The accountable authority instructions are the primary mechanism for an accountable authority to set out the processes to promote the proper use of Australian Government resources, including relevant money and property by officials in their entity.

The Authority’s accountable authority instructions comply with the requirements of the PGPA Act and ensure compliance with Australian Government procurement guidelines.

Consultants and contracts

Annual reports contain information about actual expenditure on contracts for consultancies. Information on the value of contracts and consultancies is available on the AusTender website.


During 2018–19, 15 new consultancy contracts were entered into, involving total actual expenditure of $316,760. In addition, three ongoing consultancy contracts were active during the reporting period, involving total actual expenditure of $134,422 (Table 11).

Consultants are engaged when specialist expertise is not available within the Authority or where an independent assessment is considered desirable. In 2018–19, consultants were engaged for services or programs including risk management, payroll/industrial relations, internal audit, asset valuations, peer review, legal advice, IT consultancy and the dive operations manual review.

Number and expenditure of consultants


Number of new contracts entered into during the period


Total actual expenditure during the period on new contracts (incl. GST)

$ 316,760

Number of ongoing contracts engaging consultants that were entered into during a previous period


Total actual expenditure during the period on ongoing contracts (incl. GST)

$ 134,422

Competitive tendering and contracting

The Authority follows the Commonwealth Procurement Rules 2019, whole of government policies such as the Indigenous Procurement Policy, and the Authority’s purchasing guidelines.

Depending on the estimated values of the tender, the selection and engagement of consultants may involve open tender or, where appropriate, limited tender (for example, to provide for the engagement of a recognised and pre-eminent expert in a particular field).

Exempt contracts

During 2018–19, no contract was exempted by the accountable authority from publication in AusTender.

Access by Auditor-General

All contracts were provided for the Auditor-General to have access to the contractor’s premises.

Procurement initiatives to support small businesses

The Authority supports small business participation in the Australian Government procurement market. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and small enterprise participation statistics are available on the Department of Finance’s website.

The Authority’s procurement practices support SMEs in ways that are consistent with paragraph 5.5–5.7 of the Commonwealth Procurement Rules. This includes consideration of SMEs capabilities and their commitment to Townsville and regional markets, and through such practices as electronic systems or use of payment cards that facilitate on-time payment performance.

Grant programs

Information on grants awarded by the Authority during 2018–19 is available on the Authority’s website.

During 2018–19, the Authority administered the following grants programs:

  • Reef Guardian Research Grants
  • Reef Guardian Stewardship and Community Grants.