APPENDIX 3 - OTHER MODELS OF PARLIAMENTARY ADMINISTRATION
The following notes relate to the system of administration adoptedin legislatures around the world which are comparable in varyingdegrees to the Australian Commonwealth Parliament.
CANADA has a federal, bicameral Parliament. The Senateand the House of Commons operate under the Parliament of CanadaAct 1985. The House of Commons is managed as a separate entity.The principal managing body is the board of Internal Economy.It acts upon all financial and administrative matters respectingMembers of the House of Commons, the House of Commons itself,its premises, its services and its staff pursuant to the provisionsof the Parliament of Canada Act. The Board of InternalEconomy is made up of nine Members of the House of Commons representingthe government party and the two largest recognised parties inopposition. The Speaker chairs the Board.
The Speaker is the link between the Board of Internal Economyand the House Administration. An important feature of this linkto the administrative structure of the House is the ExecutiveCommittee. This committee, with the Speaker as chairperson, isresponsible for management policy and major decision-making involvinggeneral administrative practices, security, and financial andpersonnel administration of the House.
Members, officers and committees are supported by resources andservices administered under the Clerk who reports to the Speaker.Three senior officials report to the Clerk: the Clerk Assistant,the Deputy Clerk and the Sergeant-at-Arms. Under the directionof the Clerk, as can be seen on the House of Commons' organisationchart (see Figure 3.1), each of the senior officials has specificauthority for the control, management and direction of well-definedareas of responsibility.
Their respective areas of responsibilities are:
- The Clerk acts as the chief executive officer of the House,provides advice and supports the Speaker and the House on allprocedural and administrative matters, and acts as Secretary tothe Board of Internal Economy.
- The Clerk Assistant provides advice and supports theSpeaker, the Clerk and the House on procedural matters, directsresearch and support services on procedural and legislative matters,as well as on international parliamentary relations.
- The Deputy Clerk advises on administrative matters and directsthe corporate activities and functions of financial managementand control, personnel administration, communication and Members'services, information technologies, legal services, and programevaluation and review. The Deputy Clerk also advises the Speakerand Members on procedural matters.
- The Sergeant-at-Arms advises on matters of security,ensures the protection of the House of Commons and maintains functionalaccommodation for Members, committees, house officers house management,staff and the Canadian Press Gallery.
Figure 3.1 Canadian Commons' Organisation Structure
|FIGURE 3.1 NOT REPRODUCED IN THIS VERSION
THE UNITED KINGDOM has a bicameral unitary system. TheHouse of Commons has its own administration, operating under theHouse of Commons (Administration) Act 1978. Figure 3.2shows the organisational structure of the House of Commons.
Since 1978 the principal managing body of the House of Commonshas been the House of Commons Commission. The Speaker chairs theCommission. In addition, there are eight other committees thatare involved in the management of the House: the Board of Management,which comprises the Department Heads viz. the Clerk of the House,the Head of Finance and Administration Department, the Serjeant-at-Arms,Librarian, Editor of the Official Report, and General Managerof the Refreshment Department; the Administration Committee, chairedby the Head of the Finance and Administration Department and comprisingthe deputy department heads and six recently established selectcommittees of the House of Commons relating to various aspectsof the management of the House.
The Board of Management consider issues that affect the Houseof Commons Service as a whole. The Clerk of the House is alsoAccounting Officer for the whole of the House of Commons Administrationvote (not including Members' salaries and allowances), and istherefore ultimately responsible for the expenditure of all sixHouse Departments and for other expenditure covered by the AdministrationVote, including superannuation, police and security services,postage, telecommunications and computer services. The Board ofManagement appoints the Administration Committee to give firstconsideration to most proposals on staff matters, to conduct oroversee consultations and negotiations with the Unions, and tomake recommendations to the Accounting Officer or the Board ofManagement as appropriate. Finally, the nine member Select Committeeof Finance and Services advises the Commission on financial mattersincluding questions of priority for expenditure and the otherfive Select Committees on the specific matters referred to intheir titles.
There is some cooperation between the House of Lords and the Houseof Commons mainly through the Leader of the House of Commons consultingwith the Leader of the House of Lords over issues. There is aJoint Committee covering such matters and they have had some successin areas such as compatible computer system (though only now lookingat the issue of compatible software), staffing and security arrangements.However, there is still a need to look jointly at Member allowances,care and maintenance of the buildings, provision of new buildingsand technological matters. With respect to the buildings, thecurrent Leader of the House of Commons has recently negotiatedwith Treasury for a 10 year program of capital expenditure onmaintenance and rebuilding to accommodate the current levels ofMembers and staff. The Leader of the House will chair the keycommittee on these matters as an interim arrangement.
With respect to the broad powers available to the commission relatingto House of Commons staffing, the practice has been for the Commissionto delegate staff appointments to the department heads. The Clerkof the House, the Clerk Assistant, and the Serjeant-at-Arms areCrown Appointments.
Figure 3.2 House of Commons Organisation Structure
|FIGURE 3.2 NOT REPRODUCED IN THIS VERSION
NEW ZEALAND is a unicameral unitary system, whose legislatureis administered under the Parliamentary Service Act 1985.A statutory committee of seven members, chaired by the Speaker,is given responsibility for providing the services required bymembers. This Commission has a Minister as a member and has onemember nominated by the Leader of the Opposition. The other fourmembers, a majority, are backbench members elected by their membersof Parliament.
A Department of State called the Parliamentary Service is responsibleto this Commission. The Parliamentary Service is headed by anofficial called the General Manager. It is the Parliamentary Servicewhich technically employs members' staff, as well as messengers,catering, Hansard, library, security and maintenance staff.
While these staff are under the day to day control of the GeneralManager, who reports frequently to the Speaker, the Commissionmeets at least once each month to determine policy for the service.The consequence has been a huge change in terms of members' involvementwith the services they receive compared to the position that obtainedbefore 1985.
A separate arrangement applies in respect of the Clerk of theHouse and the staff who service the House and its committees.These are employed by the Clerk in a separate office called theOffice of the Clerk. The Clerk is directly responsible to theSpeaker for the administration of this Office and the Office isfunded separately from the Parliamentary Service.
The production of Hansard was transferred from the ParliamentaryService to the Office of the Clerk on 1 January 1992 as a functionthat was more closely connected with the operations of the Housethan are the administrative functions discharged by the ParliamentaryService.
NSW has a bicameral Parliament. The Legislative Assemblyand the Legislative Council are supported by two separate departmentsfor procedural, administrative and other support services to assistMembers in their parliamentary duties.
The Clerk of Department of the Legislative Assembly and the Clerkof the Legislative Council are jointly responsible for the corporatemanagement of all other departments and sections which provideservices to Members of both Houses of the Parliament. The areasinclude the Parliamentary Library, building services, food andbeverage services, Hansard and a range of joint services. Jointservices encompass security, information technology, printing,archives, accounts and education and community services. Figure3.3 shows the organisational structure of the NSW Parliament.
Consultation between the chamber departments and their areas ofresponsibility is an important element in the corporate managementof the Parliament. While there is no board of management or similarbody, the Presiding Officers and Clerks meet together informallyas required to consider management issues.
The Presiding Officers have a global budget with delegations forexpenditure assigned in accordance with risk management principles.Managers in the joint departments and sections have delegationsfor lower levels of expenditure while the Clerks of the two chamberdepartments have delegations for larger expenditure items. Insome cases delegations are shared with expenditure requiring theapproval of both Clerks. Major items of expenditure require theapproval of the Presiding Officers.
The departments of the NSW Parliament exist by virtue of powervested in the Presiding Officers by the NSW Constitution Act of1902. The departments are independent of the NSW Public Servicealthough many public sector policies and practices are followedor have been adapted.
Figure 3.3 Organisation Structure of the NSW Parliament
|FIGURE 3.3 NOT REPRODUCED IN THIS VERSION
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