In November 2011, the Presiding
Officers agreed to undertake a review of the management and delivery of
information and communication technology (ICT) related services and equipment
to the Parliament. The Report on the review (the Roche Report) was delivered to
the Presiding Officers in August 2012.
A governance structure for the
provision of ICT to the Parliament
A central recommendation in the Roche
Report was that a Parliamentary ICT Advisory Board be established to, among
other things, oversee the development of a Strategic Plan for Parliamentary ICT
by the Chief Information Officer, provide guidance to the Chief Information
Officer on overall strategic objectives and required outcomes, and approve IT
security policy and oversight network security.
It is the intention of the Presiding
Officers that the Senate Appropriations and Staffing Committee and the House
Appropriations and Administration Committee will jointly play a high-level role
in the future architecture of governance in relation to the provision of ICT to
the Parliament – and particularly in relation to the funding and administration
of those services. To enable this role to be undertaken, it is important that
the committees are able to meet jointly.
Senate Standing Order
40(1) provides that Senate committees may meet with committees of the House of
Representatives only by order of the Senate. It is expected that such orders
will be sought on a case-by-case basis.
However, some committees
which generally conduct their business as joint committees are specifically empowered
to “confer and sit as a joint committee with” their House of Representatives
counterpart. For example, the House Committee is so authorised under Standing
Order 21(1); the Senators’ Interests Committee is so authorised under Standing Order
22A(8) and the Publications Committee is so authorised under Standing Order
22(1). Standing Order 22(3) further provides that the Publications Committee
has certain powers when sitting with its House of Representatives counterpart.
Given the ongoing nature
of the proposed governance role to be undertaken by the two committees, it is proposed
that Standing Order 19, which establishes the Appropriations and Staffing
Committee, be amended to authorise the Committee to confer and sit as a joint
committee with the its House of Representatives counterpart.
The terms of the proposed
amendments are appended to this report as Attachment A.
The committee recommends that the
Senate adopt the amendments to Standing Order 19 proposed in this report.
Senator the Hon John Hogg
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