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COMMONWEALTH FRAUD INVESTIGATIONS REPORT
APPLICABLE TO US ALL!
Things happen fast in the Commonwealth government space it seems. The Commonwealth fraud investigations 2016-17 report was published this month by the Australian Institute of Criminology. The report says there has been an 86% increase in internal Commonwealth fraud investigations, with the most common forms of internal fraud related to misuse of government credit cards, misuse of procurement payments and misuse of entity cash.
Here is a snapshot summary of some of the key stats from the 2016-17 report:
WHAT OUR CLIENTS NEED TO DO
State and Local Government agencies are responsible for preventing fraud and corruption in the work place. Every agency needs to have a robust fraud prevention plan in place that supports strong governance. Clients need to check the following areas are in place and fit for purpose, such as having:
HOW WE CAN HELP
We can help you with an initial Fraud Prevention Health Check to identify any gaps that you may have within your agency. We can then provide you with meaningful feedback and support your development fraud prevention needs. This may include assessing your fraud prevention plan and associated policies and procedures, initiating a fraud and corruption risk assessment process or simply carrying out some training with your staff.
We have an expert team with recent experience working within State and Local government areas. Centium also has expertise investigating any suspected wrongdoing in the work place and can investigate on your behalf.
If you would like to discuss to your fraud prevention needs, please call Roy Cottam Director, Ethical Conduct & Investigations: email@example.com or 0417 697600
NSW AUDIT OFFICE REPORT ON ENGAGEMENT OF PROBITY ADVISORS AND PROBITY AUDITORS
The Audit Office’s report found that three key agencies (Transport for NSW, the Department of Health and the Ministry of Health) are not fully complying with the NSW Procurement Board’s Direction for engaging probity practitioners. They also don’t have effective processes to achieve compliance or assure that probity engagements achieved value for money.
In the sample of engagements the Audit Office selected, they found instances where the agencies did not always:
The Audit Office also found that agencies tend to rely on only a limited number of probity service providers that may threaten the actual or perceived independence of probity practitioners.
WHAT OUR CLIENTS NEED TO DO
The Audit Office lists recommendations that participating agencies should review. Clients need to review and revise probity policies, processes and systems to ensure they:
Further, clients should review the existing use of probity advisors to ensure that different probity practitioners are used to maintain independence.
HOW WE CAN HELP
We can assist you with reviewing your probity policies, processes and system to ensure that they are fully compliant with the NSW Procurement Board’s Direction for engaging probity practitioners.
We can also help by providing independent, professional probity advice to your organisation and the engagement with us will ensure value of money to your organisation is achieved.[DB1]
If you would like to discuss to your probity advice needs, please call Roy Cottam Director, Ethical Conduct & Investigations: firstname.lastname@example.org or 0417 697600.
The report is available at this link: NSW Audit Office’s Report.
NEW COMMONWEALTH WHISTLEBLOWER LAW FROM 1 JULY 2019
1 July 2019 marked the start of a new Commonwealth Whistleblower law that applies to ‘trading or financial corporations’. This new legislation makes employers much more accountable to protect whistleblowers, at the same time imposing criminal penalties in a number of areas including disclosing a whistleblower's identity or causing or threatening detriment to a whistleblower.
This new legislation is likely to cover:
NSW Public Interest Disclosures Act 1994
Coverage under the NSW Public Interest Disclosures Act 1994 continues but a very wide number of organisations including NSW State Government entities are likely to be subject to the new Commonwealth law if they are trading or financial corporations.
WHAT THE NEW LAW INCLUDES
HOW WE CAN ASSIST YOU
Through our in-depth experience and knowledge of Whistleblower Protected Disclosures we can provide comprehensive support to you around your Whistleblower Policies and Practices through:
1) Training staff (and potential recipients of complaints)
2) Reviewing and ensuring Whistleblower Policy compliance (you must have this in place before 1 January 2020), and this must include addressing:
If you would like to discuss how you will meet your obligations under the new legislation, including reviewing your compliance readiness, please call Roy Cottam Director, Ethical Conduct & Investigations: email@example.com or 0417 697600.
The NSW Ombudsman has issued the following news bulletin on this new legislation here.