Media release: Planning, Industry and Environment 2019

The Auditor-General, Margaret Crawford, released her report today on the results of audits of the financial statements of agencies now grouped in the NSW Planning, Industry and Environment cluster. 

Unqualified audit opinions were issued for 56 of the 66 cluster agencies’ 30 June 2019 financial statements. Ten audits remain incomplete. The cluster agencies need to improve the timeliness of financial reporting.  

The Audit Office continued to identify issues regarding unprocessed Aboriginal land claims and the recognition of Crown land. ‘Auditor-General’s reports to parliament have recommended action to reduce the level of unprocessed land claims since 2007. However, the number of unprocessed claims continued to increase’, Margaret Crawford said.

One in five internal control findings were repeat issues. Key themes included information technology, asset management and improvements required to expense and payroll controls. 

The report makes several recommendations including:

  • Property NSW should urgently address the deficiencies in the lease data used to calculate the impact of the new leasing standard effective from 1 July 2019 

  • the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment should prioritise action to reduce unprocessed Aboriginal land claims

  • the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment should ensure the Crown land database is complete and accurate so state agencies and local government councils are better informed about the Crown land they control.

Further information

Please contact Scott Stanton, Assistant Auditor-General on 9275 7265 or by email.