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Notice given 14 July 2006

2155  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service—With reference to the Preparing to Appear Before Parliamentary Committees seminars hosted by the Australian Public Service Commission:

(1) Can details be proved for each seminar since inception, including the date, duration, location, presenters (including external presenters) and number of attendees by department and agency.

(2) Can a copy of all related training materials be provided.

(3) Can the Minister confirm that attendance at each seminar costs departments and agencies $1,700 per officer.

(4) What related attendance fees has the Australian Public Service Commission collected from each department and agency.

(5) For each seminar, what costs were incurred by the Australian Public Service Commission, disaggregated to show venue, food, beverages, external consultants and other identified costs.

2156  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service—With reference to the Parliamentary Committees - Managing the Politics, Perception and Risk sessions hosted by the Australian Public Service Commission:

(1) Can details be provided for each session since inception, including the date, duration, location, presenters (including external presenters) and number of attendees by department and agency.

(2) Can a copy of all related training materials be provided.

(3) Can the Minister confirm that attendance at each seminar costs departments and agencies $230 per officer.

 

 (4) What related attendance fees has the Australian Public Service Commission collected from each department and agency.

(5) For each session, what costs were incurred by the Australian Public Service Commission, disaggregated to show venue, food, beverages, external consultants and other identified costs.

(6) Can the Minister confirm that: (a) the Australian Public Service Commission advertised a session in the April 2006 issue of the Public Sector Informant advising prospective attendees that attendance would help them understand ‘how you need to prepare for a successful parliamentary committee appearance and what approach can be career-threatening’; and (b) the same description of the session is published on the Australian Public Service Commission website.

(7) Can details be provided of the ‘career-threatening’ approaches covered in the session.

(8) Can the Minister confirm the Australian Public Service Commission advertisement in the April 2006 issue of the Public Sector Informant also advised prospective attendees that attendance would help them gain an understanding of the ‘politics behind’ the parliamentary committee process.

(9) Does section 10(1) of the Public Service Act 1999 provide that ‘the APS is apolitical, performing its functions in an impartial and professional manner’.

(10) What is the nature of the political advice provided to attendees at these sessions hosted by the Australian Public Service Commission.

(11) What political expertise does the Australian Public Service Commission possess.

(12) Can the Minister confirm the Australian Public Service Commission advertisement in the April 2006 issue of the Public Sector Informant also advised prospective attendees they would receive ‘insider tips on how to provide evidence’.

(13) What ‘insider advice’ is offered by the Australian Public Service Commission at these sessions.

(14) Can the Minister confirm the Australian Public Service Commission advertisement in the April 2006 issue of the Public Sector Informant also advised prospective attendees they would receive ‘advice on questions on notice’.

(15) What advice does the Australian Public Service Commission provide at these sessions in relation to questions on notice.

2183  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—

(1) With reference to calls to the Employee Assistance Program for the period 30 June 2003 to 30 June 2006, by portfolio agency, by month: (a) how many calls were logged; and (b) what was this as a percentage of Full Time Equivalents by agency.

(2) What was the cost of the program for each portfolio agency in the 2004, 2005 and 2006 financial years.