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Wednesday, 3 October 1984
Page: 1138

Senator Dame MARGARET GUILFOYLE(5.34) —I move:

That the Senate take note of the paper.

We have an interesting paper before us, together with the statement of the Minister for Finance (Mr Dawkins). The paper outlines the program presentation of appropriations and outlays for departmental estimates for 1984-85. Its intention is to assist Parliament and the general public in their examination of the 1984-85 figures in the Budget Estimates. This paper presents a reconciliation between appropriations in the Consolidated Revenue Fund and outlays that actually occur. This is the second time that it has been published, as it was published for the first time last year. I believe it is of assistance, in the manner in which it has been described to be, in that it does present functional classifications of outlays in 18 or more major categories. The Minister mentioned in his statement a pilot study to explore implementation of program budgeting. As I anticipated, the report of that pilot study is expected shortly, and I look forward to its reaction on the matter of the implementation of program budgeting.

Another matter that is of interest in the papers before us is the financial management improvements program and the way in which the Department of Communications, the Department of Health and the Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs are assisting in developing guidelines for that program. All of these matters lead to greater accountability in Public Service management and in public expenditure. I was interested to see them and I feel sure that they will be of interest in the wider community.

Question resolved in the affirmative.