Industry and economy
Ensuring food retail businesses comply with food safety standards
The NSW food industry was worth $113.0 billion in 2015. The NSW Food Authority (NSWFA) is responsible for regulating the production, transportation and sale of food in NSW. It is also responsible for ensuring food is safe and fit for human consumption. NSWFA has Food Regulation Partnerships (FRPs) with 152 local councils to ensure food retail businesses comply with food safety standards. Councils inspect and monitor food retail businesses on NSWFA’s behalf. The level of monitoring councils are required to provide utilises a risk-based approach developed by NSWFA. Food retail businesses are defined as businesses that sell ready to eat prepared food to consumers and include cafes, restaurants, clubs, pubs, takeaways and bakeries.
This audit will assess the effectiveness of NSWFA in ensuring food retail businesses comply with food safety standards. This is primarily done through the FRPs. We will look at these agreements, and policies and procedures established by NSWFA, to ensure these functions are fulfilled.
Sale and lease of Crown land
This audit will focus on the Department of Primary Industries, assessing whether it is managing transactions involving the sale or lease of Crown land effectively. In assessing this, we will consider the Department’s:
- overall strategic plan for the management of Crown lands, including how well this is communicated and understood, and how effectively performance against outcomes is measured and reported;
- engagement with stakeholders, including whether decisions are made transparently and communicated clearly; and
- governance framework for decision making, including the role of decision making delegation, assurance and review.
Mining rehabilitation security deposits
Companies authorised by the NSW Department of Industry to undertake mining activities must pay a security deposit prior to starting mine operations. The deposit is designed to cover the full estimated costs of rehabilitation, to the standard set by their approvals, in the event of them defaulting on their rehabilitation obligations. To assist the Department in determining the security deposit amount for each site, mining companies are required to provide an estimate of total rehabilitation costs. The Department is responsible for verifying the adequacy of these rehabilitation cost estimates.
This audit will assess whether the Department maintains adequate security deposits to cover the liabilities associated with mining rehabilitation, including the decommissioning of infrastructure and any long term post-closure management requirements.
In making this assessment, the audit will examine whether the Department:
- has a clear understanding of rehabilitation outcomes for each major mine site
- undertakes ongoing reviews of the extent of disturbance and rehabilitation at each major mine site
- maintains reasonable estimates of rehabilitation costs, including contingencies
- can access adequate security deposits to cover the costs of rehabilitation when needed.
The audit will examine larger mineral mines including open cut and underground metalliferous and coal mines but will not cover mineral exploration, and petroleum and CSG mining.
The audit will not examine the appropriateness of consent conditions set by the Department of Planning and Environment, but will consider how these are used by the Department of Industry to identify appropriate rehabilitation outcomes.
Implementation of the Government’s Program Evaluation Framework
(See description of audit under Public administration and finance)
Planning Assessment Commission determinations
(See description of audit under Planning, environment and natural resources)
- NSW major event assessments
- Energy rebates for low income households
- Strategic Release Framework for Coal
- Biosecurity risk management
- Matching skills training with market need