Audit Program

Current audits – these are audits which we have commenced. Our topic selection aims to provide Parliament with advice and assurance across four categories of public sector activity – service delivery, economic development, social and environment, and governance. Other factors include the significance of identified issues and regard for matters referred to us by Parliament.

Forward audit program – these are potential audit topics that have been approved through our topic selection process. It is vital that we are able to respond to key issues as they emerge and as such, our forward program focuses on a 12-month period. This allows us to easily adapt to changing priorities and include topics as they arise. Importantly, we regularly revise this list, it is not in any specific order and is subject to change.

Projects recently removed from our priority forward audit program – in response to changing priorities and emerging issues we have recently removed the following topics from our immediate forward audit program. However, these topics remain potential audits in the future.

We do not disclose any further details of our work in progress, as our report to Parliament is the vehicle for informing the Parliament about our work. However, if you would like to contact us about any of these projects please email us at or phone (08) 6557 7500.

Current audits

Forward audit program

Recently removed from forward audit program


Confiscation of the proceeds of crime

Confiscation of the proceeds of crime is a key strategy for disrupting criminal activity, especially serious and organised crime. The Criminal Property Confiscation Act 2000 provides for the confiscation of property acquired as a result of criminal activity and property used for criminal activity. Under the Act, WA Police and Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions can apply to prevent property from being disposed while investigations or prosecutions are carried out.

The objective of this audit is to assess if agencies are effectively and efficiently identifying, confiscating and distributing proceeds of crime. Our lines of inquiry include:

  1. Are agencies effectively identifying and freezing assets acquired through, or used for, criminal activity?
  2. Do agencies have a consistent and effective approach for the storage, management and confiscation of the proceeds of crime?
  3. Is money distributed from the Criminal Property Confiscation Account in line with the Criminal Property Confiscation Act 2000?
Tabling is currently anticipated in September/October 2017. Have Your Say

Non-clinical services at Fiona Stanley Hospital

In July 2011, the Department of Health awarded the facilities management services contract covering all non-clinical services at Fiona Stanley Hospital. The contract, costed at $4.3 billion will operate for up to 20 years.

This audit will assess how effectively South Metropolitan Health Service (SMHS) is managing the non-clinical services contract at FSH. The audit is, in part, in response to a request from the Education and Health Standing Committee. Our lines of inquiry:

  1. Is the contract delivering the services needed at the cost expected?
  2. Is SMHS effectively monitoring and enforcing the provisions of the contract?
Tabling is currently anticipated in June/July 2017. Have Your Say

Minimising drugs and alcohol in prisons

The Department of Corrective Services prioritises the safety of prison staff, and the safety and rehabilitation of prisoners. Effective strategies to detect drugs and alcohol in prisons improves the safety of prison staff and prisoners, and the effectiveness of treatment programs. This in turn affects recidivism rates and overall community safety.

The objective of the audit is to determine if the Department of Corrective Services (DCS) has effective strategies in place to minimise drugs and alcohol in WA prisons. Our lines of inquiry include:

  1. Does DCS set targets and have effective strategies to prevent drugs and alcohol entering prisons and to detect their presence in prison?
  2. Are drug and alcohol treatment programs effective at minimising drugs and alcohol in prisons?
Tabling is currently anticipated in the third quarter of 2017. Have Your Say

Planning and management of bus services

Buses are an important part of the metropolitan transport network. Effective bus services increase transport supply, reduce demand on the road network and can ease traffic congestion. Their flexible operating characteristics are best able to serve the low residential densities and increasingly dispersed employment, education, shopping and other trip-generating activities which characterise Australian cities.

This audit will focus on an assessment of the efficiency and effectiveness of the planning and management of bus services. Our lines of inquiry include:

  1. Are bus services effectively planned?
  2. Are bus services delivered effectively and efficiently?
  3. Are initiatives in place to increase patronage?
Tabling is currently anticipated in July/August 2017. Have Your Say

Juvenile justice

The Young Offenders Act 1994 was established to protect the community from illegal behaviour while ensuring the fair treatment of young people. The Act provides diversion options for young people aged 10 -17 years who have committed less serious offences (non-scheduled offences), and requires WA Police and other agencies to consider alternatives to court. This audit will assess if agencies effectively divert young people in contact with police away from court (as described in the Act), by providing the right services, in the right places, at the right times. Our focus will be on the following questions:

  1. Do police divert young people when possible, in accordance with the Young Offenders Act?
  2. Are agencies working together to target resources to make effective services available and accessible?
  3. Do young people receive services and programs that meet their individual needs?
  4. Do agencies have an accurate picture of how well youth justice diversion is working?
Tabling is currently anticipated in the third quarter of 2017. Have Your Say

Management of pastoral lands in WA

Around 870,000 km2 (34%) of WA’s Crown estate is made up of pastoral lands. Leases over these lands are granted by the Minister for Lands, and administered by the Pastoral Lands Board with support from the Department of Lands. At 1 July 2015, there were 493 pastoral leases granted for a 50 year term.

Pastoral lands face ongoing challenges, including historical and ongoing land degradation. The livelihoods of pastoralists, and others who provide services to them, depend on sound management of this land. This audit will focus on how the state manages the environmental condition of pastoral lands including its system of regulation to monitor and enforce compliance with pastoral lease conditions and associated legislation. It will also look at current and historic information on pastoral land condition and assessments of environmental condition undertaken during the 2015 pastoral lease renewal process.

The objective of the audit is to assess whether there is a coordinated and effective approach to protect the ecological sustainability of pastoral lands. Our lines of inquiry include, but will not be limited to:

  1. Does the state have sufficient and effective strategies in place to understand the environmental condition of pastoral lands?
  2. Are state compliance programs reasonable to prevent degradation and rehabilitate pastoral lands?
  3. Will the renewal of pastoral leases in 2015 assist the state to protect the ecological sustainability of pastoral lands?
Tabling is currently anticipated in the third quarter of 2017. Have Your Say

Follow-up performance audit — Rich and rare: conservation of threatened species

Western Australia is internationally significant for its biodiversity, of both flora and fauna.

In 2009, the Auditor General tabled a report Rich and Rare: Conservation of Threatened Species. It concluded that in many areas the Department of Environment and Conservation – now the Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW) was not effectively protecting and recovering threatened species. The number of threatened species was rising with only a few species improving, and existing legislation did not support many of the Department’s activities. We found some successful programs to address broad scale threats, but significant challenges in other areas that underpin conservation, such as habitat protection.

In 2013, DPaW became the responsible agency for nature conservation and the management of Western Australia’s world-class network of national and marine parks. This follow-up performance audit will focus on whether DPaW has implemented changes that effectively address the concerns identified in the 2009 report.

Tabling is currently anticipated in August 2017. Have Your Say

Local content in government procurement

Government agencies are required to comply with State Supply Commission procurement policies, including policies designed to stimulate the state economy, grow local businesses and create jobs. Key policies include Buy Local, the Local Industry Participation Framework, and Building Local Industry.

The audit objective is to assess the effectiveness of government procurement initiatives in delivering local content and employment.

We will focus on the following lines of inquiry:

  1. Are local content policies effective in creating employment and stimulating sustained local business activity?
  2. Do agencies apply local content policies consistently to all relevant procurement activities, including activities by contractors?
Tabling is currently anticipated in the fourth quarter of 2017 Have Your Say

WA State Government Strategy for Tourism 2020

In 2012, Tourism WA released its statewide strategy to double tourist visitor annual spend in Western Australia, from $6 billion to $12 billion by 2020.

The objective of this audit is to assess the effectiveness of the development and implementation of the State Government Strategy for Tourism in Western Australia 2020. Our lines of inquiry are:

  1. Was the Tourism 2020 strategy soundly based, clear and well supported?
  2. Did Tourism WA deliver activities to meet the Tourism 2020 strategy goal, KPIs and related targets?
Tabling is currently anticipated in the fourth quarter of 2017 Have Your Say

Hearing loss in Aboriginal children

Assess the Department of Health’s progress in implementing the otitis media (OM) model of care to address the high rate of hearing loss in Aboriginal children and whether it is having the expected impact.

Have Your Say

Department of Corrective Services governance

Assess the department’s management of leave.

Have Your Say

Management of Crown land site contamination

The audit is intended to examine the effectiveness of the management of contaminated sites and the prevention of contamination of unallocated land in Western Australia. 

Have Your Say

Regulation of firearms

The audit is intended to examine the effectiveness of management of firearm licensing and regulation in Western Australia.

Have Your Say

Children leaving care

Assess whether the Department of Child Protection and Family Support effectively supports children and young people leaving care.

Have Your Say

Pathways through emergency and acute mental health care

Examine the effectiveness of the initial response to mental health emergencies and the pathway of people through the system of mental health support.

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Managing salinity

Assess the effectiveness of the management of dryland salinity in the Wheatbelt.

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Availability and accessibility of treatment for methamphetamine

Assess the availability and accessibility of treatment for methamphetamine use.

Have Your Say

Management of art and cultural collections

Determine whether the Art Gallery of Western Australia effectively manages the State’s art collection and its accessibility by the public.

Have Your Say

Public sector records management

Determine whether agencies are effectively managing records in accordance with the state’s requirements.

Have Your Say

Management of disruptive tenants in public housing

Assess how effectively the Housing Authority manages tenants that are disruptive or use premises illegally.

Have Your Say

Effectiveness of network user passwords

Determine whether WA agencies are using good practices to manage network passwords.

Have Your Say

Funding for non-government schools

Assess if non-government schools receive the recurrent student grants they are entitled to.

Business continuity management

Assess the adequacy of BCM to effectively respond to business disruption incidents.

Learning lessons from major capital projects

Potential follow-on of our 2012 report – Major Capital Projects . Assess whether agencies are conducting effective post project reviews and benefits realisation assessments to improve major capital and infrastructure project outcomes.

Regulation in Processing and Sale of Meat Products

The audit is intended to examine the efficacy of regulation at key stages of the supply chain in the meat industry.