Appendix 1: Response to feedback on our draft annual plan

Annual plan 2024/25.

Section 36 of the Public Audit Act 2001 outlines the requirements for preparing the Auditor-General’s annual plan. This includes considering any comments of the Speaker or any committee of the House of Representatives on our draft annual plan 2024/25.

In this Appendix, we describe the feedback we received.

The Finance and Expenditure Committee invited us to discuss our draft plan. The Committee was interested in our planned work to ensure the future sustainability of public sector audit, the auditing of schools, our continued focus on performance reporting, and our interest in long-term issues and challenges, particularly climate change.

The Committee reported that it found our plan well considered and it did not have any changes to propose. The Committee also incorporated some of our focus areas in its scrutiny plan.

The Committee also shared the annual plan with other select committees to consider when discussing their scrutiny plans. We did not receive any feedback from the other select committees.

We received joint feedback from Te Kawa Mataaho Public Service Commission, the Treasury, and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Their feedback was supportive of our ongoing and planned work to improve public sector practice and performance, the sharper focus we have brought to our discretionary work, and our desire to influence change in core spending areas. This feedback supported the need to be flexible and responsive to changing circumstances for public organisations.

Other feedback we received from submitters was largely supportive of our proposed work programme and the topics it covers. This included significant interest in our work on influencing improved performance reporting, with requests for more guidance and clarity on what “good” looks like. In response, we have enhanced our work programme on performance reporting to include more guidance on good practice, particularly in areas that have ongoing challenges. We will also examine the quality of reporting by interdepartmental executive boards.

We received feedback about the challenges facing the local government sector. In response, we plan to do more to share our insights and work closely with local government sector groups and carry out work focusing on the governance and oversight of council-controlled organisations.

We received strong support for our work on enhancing our impact in te ao Māori.

We have made some changes in response to feedback on specific work. This includes removing our proposed work looking at integrity system leadership in the sports sector. We made this decision after receiving feedback from Sport New Zealand that suggested we allow time for the new Integrity Sport and Recreation Commission to fully establish itself and progress its work.

Instead, we plan to carry out a performance audit on how public sector leaders establish a culture of integrity in their organisation. This work may focus on an organisation or organisations that have faced recent integrity issues or have an operating context that presents specific challenges to establishing and maintaining a healthy integrity culture.

Although some detailed feedback we received did not result in changes to the planned work, it will inform the scope or approach to the planned work. We will consider this feedback when we carry out more detailed planning for these new initiatives.