01/06/2009 - 13:56

State govt to halve 1,276 boards

01/06/2009 - 13:56

Bookmark

Save articles for future reference.

The Barnett government plans to halve the number of boards and committees that are currently costing the state nearly $21 million.

The Barnett government plans to halve the number of boards and committees that are currently costing the state nearly $21 million.

Premier Colin Barnett said today the government will review the 1,276 boards and committees in the state in a bid to find financial and efficiency savings in government processes.

Of the total figure, 518 committees and boards are costing the state $20.96 million, not including administration costs, the government claims.

The Health and Indigenous Affairs portfolios currently contain the highest number of boards (315) and the number of boards receiving payments (161).

While Mr Barnett acknowledged the current government had established some new boards and committees, the relevancy of some boards set up during the previous government were questionable.

"Boards and committees, such as the Prisoner Review Board and the Mental Health Review Board, perform an important role, but some others are questionable and may no longer be performing a relevant or useful role," Mr Barnett said.

"As new issues have arisen, new bodies have been created and the old ones have just been left in place.

"It's not just the cost of paying people to attend or serve on boards - paying is appropriate, but it's the resources consumed in terms of public service and time.

"We need to ensure taxpayers get value for money."

 

 

The announcement is below:

 

The Liberal-National Government will systematically assess more than 1,270 boards and committees to find financial and efficiency savings in Government processes.

Premier Colin Barnett said 1,276 boards and committees had been identified, 518 of which comprised paid members at a total cost of $20.96million - not counting administration costs.

The number of boards more than doubles that in Queensland (600) and triple the number in South Australia (375).

The Liberal-National Government inherited a system from where it was unknown how many committees existed and how much they cost the State.

"We have discovered that while the previous government claimed there were only about 440 boards and committees, in reality there were more than 1,270,"
Mr Barnett said.

"Boards and committees have a legitimate role. The Liberal-National Government has established some new boards and committees since winning the election to work through how to fix the mess left by the previous Labor government.

"Boards and committees, such as the Prisoner Review Board and the Mental Health Review Board, perform an important role, but some others are questionable and may no longer be performing a relevant or useful role. As new issues have arisen, new bodies have been created and the old ones have just been left in place.

"The complete abrogation of management responsibility to the point where no-one could say how many boards there were and how much they were costing in membership every year was a completely financially irresponsible approach by the previous government.

"It's not just the cost of paying people to attend or serve on boards - paying is appropriate, but it's the resources consumed in terms of public service and time. We need to ensure taxpayers get value for money."

The Premier said the State Government would work through departments to get rid of unnecessary boards as part of its ongoing efforts to make government more modern and responsive to the needs of Western Australians.

"The Liberal-National Government will be looking to halve the number of boards and committees. This is a big task but we will not shy away from it," he said.

"We are a Government which makes the hard decisions in the best interests of WA and this will result in better Government for a better State."

 

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options