Section 2: Outcome and planned performance

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2.1     Outcome and performance information

The relationship between activities of the department and the planned outcome is described both financially and non-financially. Financial details for the planned outcome appear in Table 2.1 (Budgeted expenses for Outcome 1) while non-financial information appears in Table 2.2 (Performance information for Outcome 1).

Attribution of corporate overheads

The cost of corporate overheads is allocated across the Offices in the departmental programme, based on average staffing levels.

Trends in Resourcing

Figure 4 shows the departmental appropriation at $20.6m in 2014-15 (compared with $21.9m in 2014-15), and historical levels of departmental funding. The decrease in appropriation for 2014-15 is the result of two significant factors. The first ($1.0m) relates to the transfer of the information and communication technology services function, formerly resourced internally, to DPS. The second ($0.3m) relates to the impact of the increased efficiency dividend from 1.25 per cent to 2.5 per cent.

Figure 4:  Trends in departmental appropriation ($'000)

Figure 4:  Trends in departmental appropriation ($'000)

Outcome 1: Advisory and administrative support services to enable the Senate and senators to fulfil their representative and legislative duties.

2.2     Strategy

The department provides advisory and administrative support services to enable the Senate and senators to fulfil their representative and legislative duties. To achieve this outcome with the funds appropriated by the Parliament, the department provides the Senate, its committees, the President of the Senate and senators with a broad range of advisory and support services.

The department also runs education and awareness activities and produces information resources to promote a better understanding of parliamentary processes.

The work of the department is determined by the Senate and its committees. The department is responsible to the Senate and all senators, and maintains complete impartiality in serving equally senators from all political parties and independent senators. 

The department provides services in four areas.
  • Senate support – advice and secretariat support for the functioning of the Senate.
  • Committee support – advice and secretariat support for the operation of Senate committees and some joint committees.
  • Senators’ services – office services and other support services to senators and Senate officeholders in Parliament House.
  • Public education and awareness – promotion of public knowledge and awareness of the role and work of the Senate and its committees.

These areas are reflected as intermediate outcomes in Figure 1.

2.3     Expense statement

Table 2.1 shows how the 2014-15 appropriations translate to total resourcing for Outcome 1, including revenue from government and revenue from other sources. 

The total annual budgeted expenses for the department for the 2014-15 Budget is $21.4m. 

Table 2.1: Budgeted Expenses for Outcome 1

Outcome 1: Advisory and administrative support services to enable the Senate and senators to fulfil their representative and legislative duties
2013-14
Estimated actual expenses
$'000
2014-15 Estimated Expenses
$'000
Program: Department of the Senate
Departmental Expenses
   
Clerk's Office
   Departmental appropriation
2,000
1,914
Subtotal
2,000
1,914
Table Office
   Departmental appropriation
2,497
2,389
Subtotal
2,497
2,389
Procedure Office
   Departmental appropriation
6,192
5,950
Subtotal
6,192
5,950
Committee Office
   Departmental appropriation
7,625
7,297
Subtotal
7,625
7,297
Black Rod's Office
   Departmental appropriation
4,019
3,845
Subtotal
4,019
3,845
Total expenses for Outcome 1 1
22,333
21,395

 

 
2013-14
2014-15
Average staffing level (number)
146.6
150.0

1 Departmental appropriation combines revenue from Appropriation (Parliamentary Departments) Bill (No. 1) and revenue from independent sources (s31).

 

2.4     Contributions

Performance indicators for the achievement of Outcome 1 are outlined in Table 2.2.

Table 2.2:  Performance information for Outcome 1

Performance information across Programme 1

Performance is monitored on the basis of:

Quality

  • The degree of satisfaction of the President, Deputy President and senators, as expressed through formal and informal feedback mechanisms, with the accuracy, quality and timeliness of advice and support and the achievement of key tasks.

Timeliness

  • Advice or material given at the request of a senator in time to be used for the purpose for which it was required.
  • Key business documents for the Senate and its committees, including minutes, agendas, messages and schedules of amendments and reports, produced in accordance with predetermined requirements and the requirements of the Senate and its committees.

Quantity

  • On the basis of recent experience, in 2014-15 the department would expect to support the Senate on approximately 60 sitting days and committees in accordance with their requirements.

Achievements against planned performance are reported in the department’s Annual Report.

 

Performance information for each Office

In addition to the performance indicators and assessments that apply to the whole of the department, the following indicators and assessments apply to individual Offices.

Clerk’s Office

Output

Performance Information

Advice on, and support for, proceedings of the Senate and its committees.

Advice and support are sound and timely, and provided to the satisfaction of the President, other officeholders, Senate committees and senators so that they are able to fulfil their roles.

Leadership and strategic direction for the department.

The capacity of the department and its employees to provide advice and support meets operational requirements.

Governance structures advance the department’s accountability and the achievement of its outcome. 

Co-ordination of information resources advances awareness of the role and work of the Senate. 

Secretariat and advisory support to the Procedure Committee, the Committee of Privileges and the Committee of Senators’ Interests.

Advice, documentation, publications and draft reports are accurate, of a high standard and produced to meet the required timeframes.

Procedural information and resources for senators and the department.

Odgers’ Australian Senate Practice is updated to reflect significant changes in the Senate.

 The Procedural Information Bulletin is produced after each sitting period and other resources are updated and augmented as required.


Table Office

Output

Performance Information

Programming and procedural support for the Senate and the legislative process.

Order of Business finalised prior to sitting and progressively updated.

Procedural advice and legislative documents are timely and accurate, and meet the requirements of the Senate and senators.

Publication of formal and informal records of Senate business.

Notice Paper for the current day and Journals of the Senate are accurately published and meet required timeframes.

Other publications and statistics are accurate and produced to meet required timeframes. 

Dissemination and storage of documents.

Tabled documents are accurately processed and stored, and available online wherever possible.

Inquiries assistance is effective and supported by online information service. 

Secretariat support to the Appropriations and Staffing, Selection of Bills, and Publications committees.

Advice, documentation, publications and draft reports are accurate, of a high standard and produced to meet the required timeframes.


Procedure Office

Output

Performance Information

Advisory services and procedural support to non-government senators.

Procedural advice is accurate and timely, and support is provided to the satisfaction of senators.

Drafting services to non-government senators.

Amendments and bills are drafted promptly, are legally sound, and are provided to senators in time for their use in the Senate chamber or elsewhere.

Secretariat support to the Regulations and Ordinances Committee, the Scrutiny of Bills Committee, and the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights.

Advice, documentation, publications and draft reports are accurate, of a high standard, and produced to meet the required timeframes.

Research and parliamentary information for senators, staff, public servants, officials from other parliaments, and the community; and support for inter-parliamentary relations.

Research and parliamentary information is accurate, timely and comprehensive.

Seminars, lectures and other parliamentary information projects are provided to the satisfaction of target audiences, increasing their awareness of the work and role of the Parliament, in particular the Senate and its committees.

Inter-parliamentary functions are supported to the satisfaction of stakeholders. 

Parliamentary education services to schools, teachers and students.

Education Centre teaching and other Parliamentary Education Office projects accurately reflect the Parliament and its work.

PEO teaching programs held on time and in accordance with booking schedule. 

PEO projects delivered according to programed schedule. 

 

Committee Office

Output

Performance Information

Secretariat support and procedural advice to the Senate legislative and general purpose standing committees, select committees, and certain joint committees.

The degree of satisfaction of the Chair of Committees, committee members and other senators with the quality and timeliness of advice and support.

Draft reports, reports and other documents are timely, accurate and of a high standard. Tabling deadlines are met.

Inquiry information, evidence and reports are published promptly upon authorisation.

 

Black Rod’s Office

Output

Performance Information

Office, chamber and committee room support, ceremonial services, and security advice for senators and Senate officeholders.

Services are provided to the satisfaction of the President, officeholders, Senate committees and senators so that they are able to fulfil their roles.
Corporate services, including payroll services for senators and departmental staff, and support to the Clerk in meeting public governance, performance and accountability requirements. Provision of corporate services and administration of public finances facilitate the operations of the Senate and meet accountability obligations under the law and to the Senate.
Support services, in conjunction with the Department of the House of Representatives, to the Former Members of Parliament Association. Services are of a high standard, are provided promptly and are accurate.
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