Appendix 3 - Compliance with requirements for government agencies

This appendix provides the department's 2008–09 reports against particular legislated reporting requirements for Australian Government agencies. It also provides a signed statement by the Clerk certifying that the department complies with the Commonwealth Fraud Control Guidelines.

Section 74 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 In 2008–09, one occupational health and safety incident was reported to Comcare under section 68 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991. The incident involved contractors who were removing a whiteboard in preparation for painting. The whiteboard fell and severed a power cable. The contractors were made aware of requirements regarding safe work practices. The incident was not investigated by Comcare.
Section 8 of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 The department is not subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1982. However, the department's policy is to comply with the intent of the Act to the extent practicable, having regard to the legal issues which may arise through the non-application to the department of the protections afforded by the Act.

No requests for information were received during the year.
Privacy Act 1988 The department is not subject to most of the provisions of the Privacy Act 1988. The provisions relating to tax file numbers apply, and the department has common law obligations in relation to the handling of personal information. It is departmental policy to observe, as far as practicable, the Privacy Principles set out in the Act.

No privacy issues were raised with the department during the year.
Section 311A of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 In 2008–09, the department paid a total of $302,792 for advertising. Of the total, $284,815 was for Senate committee activities, and the balance was for recruitment and other minor advertising, delivered through hma Blaze, the government contractor.

No market research, polling, direct mail or creative advertising organisations were engaged during the year.
Section 516A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 Although the department was not subject to the provisions of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, it adopted policies and practices that contributed to best environmental performance during the year. Most aspects of the parliament's environmental management are coordinated by the Department of Parliamentary Services, and details are provided in that department's annual report.
Legal Services Directions 2005 In 2008–09, the department expended $3,916 on legal services. This amount does not include $117,264 for the provision of independent legal advice in supporting the work of the legislative scrutiny committees. There was no expenditure on counsel during the year.

In accordance with the Legal Services Directions 2005, the Clerk of the Senate certified to the Office of Legal Services Coordination compliance with certain matters under paragraph 11.2 of the directions.

Fraud control