Local Government Procurement

Auditor General's overview

I am pleased to present this performance audit on aspects of local government procurement that require close attention.

Local governments in Western Australia manage more than $40 billion in community assets and spend over $4 billion annually on community infrastructure and services such as roads and footpaths, public halls, recreation facilities and rubbish collection.



Video summary

Local Government Procurement

Duration 01:33


We reported 86 detailed findings across the 8 LGs. This included 11 significant findings across 5 LGs, and 41 moderate and 34 minor across all 8 LGs. Figure 2 shows the findings against all our audit focus areas.

Figure 2 - Summary of key findings

Findings per local government

The issues we identified represent weaknesses in key policy and control principles. Figure 3 shows the breakdown of findings for each of the 8 LGs we reviewed, and shows no specific trends across size or location of the LG.

Figure 3 - Key findings by local government

Report content

Introduction and background
The objective of this audit was to assess the effectiveness of procurement arrangements at 8 local government entities (LGs) of varying sizes in both metropolitan and regional Western Australia. Read more...
Audit conclusion
All 8 local governments we reviewed had shortcomings in their procurement practices, most related to weak procurement controls, processes and documentation for tendering, purchase orders and approvals, and reviewing invoices and payment. Read more...
All LGs, including those not sampled in this audit, should review their policies, processes and controls against the focus areas of our audit in Appendix 1. Read more...
Response from local governments
Local governments in our sample generally accepted our recommendations ... read more
While all LGs had procurement policies and procedures, they are not always effectively and consistently used
All LGs had policies and training in place to support staff in the procurement process. However, we found examples where LG procurement activity did not comply … read more
Local Governments need better procurement oversight and controls
We found weaknesses in key controls around approvals, segregation of duties, and checking of invoices at the 8 LGs. Read more...
Procurement decisions and conflict of interest considerations need to be better documented
To ensure accountable and transparent procurement activities LGs need to document key processes. Read more...
Appendix 1: Audit focus areas
The following table shows our audit focus areas.
Audit focus and scope
The audit objective was to determine if LGs have effective procurement arrangements in place. Read more...