House of Representatives Committees

Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit

Review of Auditor-General's Report No. 34 1997-98, New Submarine Project

Recommendations

Recommendation 1

The Committee recommends that the Minister for Defence direct the Secretary of the Department of Defence to institute an investigation to establish: the appropriateness or otherwise of the $2.4 million payment to the Australian Submarine Corporation's broker; whether Commonwealth monies may have been misdirected; and why a full audit trail could not be produced. (paragraph 3.37)

Recommendation 2

The Committee recommends that where the Department of Defence settles a commercial dispute, the settlement process be openly and properly documented. (paragraph 3.38)

Recommendation 3

The Committee recommends that the Auditor-General's Recommendations No. 4 and No. 5 in Audit Report No. 34, 1997-98, concerning increasing the frequency of the cost schedule control system surveillance audit and increasing the proportion of work package progress claims reviewed, be implemented by the Department of Defence. (paragraph 4.36)

Recommendation 4

The Committee recommends that the Department of Defence apply the utmost diligence to ensuring that the funds the Australian Submarine Corporation has in hand and the remaining funds the Department of Defence has yet to pay under the contract, will be sufficient for the satisfactory completion of the new submarine project. (paragraph 5.39)

Recommendation 5

The Committee recommends that the Minister for Finance make legislative provision, either though amendment of the Auditor-General Act or the Finance Minister's Orders, to enable the Auditor-General to access the premises of a contractor for the purpose of inspecting and copying documentation and records directly related to a Commonwealth contract, and to inspect any Commonwealth assets held on the premises of the contractor, where such access is, in the opinion of the Auditor-General, required to assist in the performance of an Auditor-General function. (paragraph 6.20)

Recommendation 6

The Committee recommends that realistic allowances for contingencies be made in delivery schedules for major Department of Defence projects and changeovers in platform types. (paragraph 10.45)

Recommendation 7

The Committee recommends that the Government urgently address the outstanding issue of through-life support for the Collins submarines. (paragraph 10.57)

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