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Wednesday, 11 August 2004
Page: 2100

Mr CHARLES (4:33 PM) —On behalf of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit I present the following report: Report 401: Annual report 2003-2004.

Ordered that the report be printed.

Mr CHARLES —by leave—It gives me great pleasure to present the annual report of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit for 2003-04. The tabling of the annual report is an important accountability mechanism by which parliament and, through it, the public, can conveniently assess the committee's performance. The committee had a productive year in 2003-04 with the completion of three major reports: Report 395: Inquiry into the draft Financial Framework Legislation Amendment Bill; Report 399: Management and integrity of electronic information in the Commonwealth; and Report 400: Review of aviation security in Australia. The committee also tabled two reports with recommendations as part of its ongoing statutory obligation to review all reports of the Auditor-General.

The committee has received a continuing stream of responses by government to the recommendations of previous reports. Nearly 90 per cent of the committee's recommendations have been agreed to, which demonstrates the seriousness with which the government takes the committee's recommendations. It also demonstrates the committee's success in influencing government policy and agency activity. Many committees, I am sure, would envy JCPAA's success in getting its recommendations adopted.

Finally, I wish to thank my colleagues on the committee, in particular my deputy chair, Tanya Plibersek, for their support and commitment to the committee during the year. I also thank our secretariat staff for their continuing tremendous effort. This will be the eighth and final annual report that I table as Chairman of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit. I wish the committee continuing success in its activities. I commend the report to the House.