THERE had been concerns that up to 150 Commonwealth Government Agencies were about to be abolished as part of Joe Hockey’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook. We can report that there are to be efficiency reviews and the number is around there.
Indeed Treasurer has announced “When external events turn against us our domestic Budget strength needs to cushion the blow.”
There will, however, be efficiency reviews of the agencies:
The Government will commence in‑depth reviews of the functions and efficiency particularly of larger government agencies and departments. These reviews will determine whether the current resourcing and functions performed within an entity are aligned with the Government’s policy priorities and that they are being undertaken as efficiently as possible. The Departments of Health and Education (other than higher education) will be the first bodies to be reviewed.
And there will be some major abolitions:
Specifically, in the 2014‑15 MYEFO the Government is:
- abolishing 138 government bodies;
- consolidating the functions of 15 government bodies into departments;
- transferring responsibility for two bodies outside the Commonwealth;
- and merging 26 bodies (for a net reduction of 20 bodies) while five will consolidate their back office functions with shared service centres or supporting departments.