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Corporate governance

The Seacare Authority is an independent statutory authority comprising a Chairperson and Members and is supported by a secretariat. In 2018–19 the Seacare Authority was bound by the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act).

Risk management

In 2018–19, the Seacare Authority had a Strategic Risk Register in place. It was reviewed throughout the year as part of the Seacare Authority’s governance arrangements to ensure it was current and the Seacare Authority took action to address these risks as they arose.

Fraud control

The Seacare Authority is committed to complying with the Commonwealth Fraud Control Framework 2014, in particular section 10 of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Rule 2014 to minimise the incidence of fraud.

The Chairperson, as the accountable authority, certifies that the Seacare Authority:

  • prepares fraud risk assessments and fraud control plans
  • has in place appropriate mechanisms for preventing, detecting incidents of, investigating or otherwise dealing with, and recording or reporting fraud that meets its specific needs
  • takes all reasonable measures to deal appropriately with fraud relating to the Seacare Authority.

Internal audit

The Seacare Authority and Comcare have established the Comcare and Seacare Authority Audit and Risk Committee in accordance with section 45 of the PGPA Act as a joint Comcare/Seacare Authority committee.

More information about the Audit and Risk Committee can be found in the Comcare Annual Report 2018–19.

External scrutiny

There were no reports by the Auditor-General on the operations of the Seacare Authority, other than the report on the annual financial statements set out at Appendix 1.

There were no reports on the operations of the Seacare Authority conducted by a Parliamentary Committee or the Commonwealth Ombudsman in 2018–19.

Freedom of information

Agencies subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) are required to publish information as part of the Information Publication Scheme (IPS). This requirement is in Part II of the FOI Act and has replaced the former requirement to publish a section 8 statement in an annual report. Each agency must display on its website a plan showing what information it publishes in accordance with the IPS requirements. The Seacare Authority’s Agency Plan and other categories of information specified by the IPS are available at www.seacare.gov.au via the Access to Information logo on the bottom of the homepage.

Multicultural access and equity

Data on culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) Australians was collected through monitoring of helpdesk enquiries received. This data indicates that, of the 101 helpdesk enquiries received during 2018–19, only four were noted to be from CALD Australians.

The Seacare Authority reports on its access and equity activities and outcomes at the end of each financial year to the Department of Social Services as required by the Australian Government’s Multicultural Access and Equity Policy.

Disability reporting

Since 1994, non-corporate Commonwealth entities have reported on their performance as policy adviser, purchaser, employer, regulator and provider under the Commonwealth Disability Strategy. In 2007–08, reporting on the employer role was transferred to the Australian Public Service Commission’s State of the Service reports and the APS Statistical Bulletin. These reports are available at www.apsc.gov.au. From 2010–11, entities have no longer been required to report on these functions.

The Commonwealth Disability Strategy has been overtaken by the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020, which sets out a 10-year national policy framework to improve the lives of people with disability, promote participation and create a more inclusive society. A high-level, two-yearly report will track progress against each of the six outcome areas of the strategy and present a picture of how people with disability are faring. The first of these progress reports was published in 2014, and can be found at www.dss.gov.au.

Advertising and market research

No advertising campaigns were undertaken in the period.

Service provision and consultancy arrangements

There were no ongoing consultancy contracts that were active during 2018–19.

Comcare supports the Seacare Authority with procurement activities. Comcare’s policies and procedures are used when selecting and engaging consultants. Comcare has procurement arrangements that support small business participation in the Commonwealth Government procurement market. Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) and Small Enterprise participation statistics are available on the Department of Finance’s website. Comcare’s procurement arrangements also support Indigenous businesses and disability enterprises.

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.

Report on legal services expenditure

Paragraph 11.1(ba) of the Legal Services Directions 2005, issued by the Attorney-General under the Judiciary Act 1903, requires chief executives of agencies subject to the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 to ensure that their agency’s legal services purchasing, including expenditure, is appropriately recorded and monitored. The provision also requires that, by 30 October each year, the agencies make publicly available records of the legal services expenditure for the previous financial year.

Legal services expenditure 1 July 2018–30 June 2019

  • Total external legal services expenditure—Nil
  • Total internal legal services expenditure—Nil
  • Total legal services expenditure—Nil

Internal legal services for the Seacare Authority are provided by Comcare, a corporate Commonwealth entity under the PGPA Act, pursuant to section 72A of the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRC Act). More information about the legal service expenditure incurred by Comcare can be found in the Comcare Annual Report 2018–19.

Corporate governance reported in Comcare annual report

As the Seacare Authority has no staff or assets of its own, the following annual reporting requirements relating to the Seacare Authority are detailed in the Comcare Annual Report 2018–19:

  • corporate governance
  • management of human resources
  • procurement initiatives to support small business
  • purchasing
  • asset management
  • advertising and market research
  • occupational health and safety
  • ecologically sustainable development and environmental performance.

The Comcare Annual Report 2018–19 is available at www.comcare.gov.au.

Executive remuneration

The Chairperson of the Seacare Authority received remuneration totalling $35,318 for the financial year 2018–19. No other executive remuneration tables have been included as they are not applicable to the Seacare Authority.

Short term benefits

Post employment benefits

Other long term benefits

Termination benefits

Total remuneration

Name

Position title

Base salary

Bonuses

Other benefits and allowances

Superannuation contributions

Long service leave

Other long term benefits

Barry Sherriff

Chairperson

-

-

35,318

-

-

-

-

35,318

Report on non-compliance with the PGPA Act

For the financial year ended 30 June 2019, based on adequate controls, including the advice of management and the audit committee, the Seacare Authority has complied with the provisions and requirements of the PGPA Act and the PGPA Rules.