Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development

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Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development logo.png
62 Northbourne Ave front.jpg
The building at 62 Northbourne Avenue in Canberra, which housed part of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development.
Department overview
Formed 18 September 2013[1]
Preceding agencies
Dissolved 20 December 2017
Superseding agency
Jurisdiction Commonwealth Government
Employees 1408 (at June 2016) [2]
Annual budget A$6.9 billion (Department of Infrastructure and Transport 2013-14)
Ministers responsible
Department executives
  • Mike Mrdak, Secretary (2013–2017)
  • Steven Kennedy, Secretary (2017)

The Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development was an Australian Government department that existed between September 2013 and December 2017.[3] Matters dealt with by the department included: infrastructure planning and coordination; transport safety; land transport; civil aviation and airports; maritime transport including shipping; administration of Australian territories; constitutional development of the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory; regional programs; regional development; local government matters; and regional policy.[4]

The head of the department was the Secretary of the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, who reported to the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, the Minister for Regional Development and the Minister for Territories, Local Government and Major Projects.

Ministers for the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development
Start date End date Minister
18 September 2013 18 February 2016 Warren Truss
18 February 2016 20 December 2017 Darren Chester
18 February 2016 27 October 2017 Fiona Nash
21 September 2015 20 December 2017 Paul Fletcher
18 September 2013 21 September 2015 Jamie Briggs

The department was headquartered in the Canberra central business district at Infrastructure House and the neighbouring building to Infrastructure House.[5]

Operational activities[edit]

In an Administrative Arrangements Order made on 18 September 2013, the functions of the department were broadly classified into the following matters:[4]

  • Infrastructure planning and co-ordination
  • Transport safety, including investigations
  • Land transport
  • Civil aviation and airports
  • Transport security
  • Maritime transport including shipping
  • Major projects office, including facilitation and implementation of all non-Defence development projects
  • Administration of the Jervis Bay Territory, the Territory of Cocos (Keeling) Islands, the Territory of Christmas Island, the Coral Sea Islands Territory, the Territory of Ashmore and Cartier Islands, and of Commonwealth responsibilities on Norfolk Island
  • Constitutional development of the Northern Territory
  • Constitutional development of the Australian Capital Territory
  • Delivery of regional and territory specific services and programmes
  • Planning and land management in the Australian Capital Territory
  • Regional development
  • Matters relating to local government
  • Regional policy and co-ordination

Prominent business units[edit]

Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics[edit]

The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) within the department provides economic analysis, research and statistics on infrastructure, transport and regional development issues to inform Australian Government policy development and wider community understanding.[6] BITRE employs around 30 staff, including statisticians, economists and policy analysts. BITRE was first established in 1970 as the Bureau of Transport Economics by the Cabinet.[6]

Office of Transport Security[edit]

The Office of Transport Security (OTS), a business division within the department, was the Australian Government’s preventive security regulator for the aviation and maritime sectors, and its primary adviser on transport security.[7] The OTS head office was in Canberra, and regional offices were situated in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.[8]

Structure and staff[edit]

The department was administered by a senior executive, comprising a Secretary and several deputy secretaries.[9]:p.11

The Secretary between 2013 and 2017 was Mike Mrdak.[10][11] Steven Kennedy was appointed the department's secretary in September 2017.[12]

The department had a staff of around 994 people (estimate for 2013–14),[13] of which around 836 were employed in Canberra and 15 were based overseas.[14]:p.123 Staff were employed as part of the Australian Public Service under the Public Service Act 1999. The workforce of the department had a reasonably even gender distribution (54% male, 46% female), but at more senior levels this ratio decreases.[15] Around two-thirds of the department held a bachelor's degree or higher.[15]

The department worked closely with several Australian Government agencies within its portfolio, including:

Budget and finance[edit]

In the department's 2013–14 budget statements, expenses were categorised as either departmental or administered expenses. Departmental expenses were those within the control of the relevant agency, whereas administered expenses were those administered on behalf of the Government. Expenses could be broken down as follows:

Program Funding (billions)
Administered expenses through the Department of the Treasury[17] $4.627
Administered expenses through the Department of Infrastructure and Transport[18] $2.038
Departmental expenses[18] $0.212
Total $6.877

Audit of expenditures[edit]

The department's financial statements were audited by the Australian National Audit Office.

History[edit]

The Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development was formed by way of an Administrative Arrangements Order issued on 18 September 2013,[4] and replaced the majority of the functions previously performed by the former Department of Infrastructure and Transport and some of the functions previously performed by the former Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport; with the exception of the arts functions that were transferred to the Attorney-General's Department and the sports functions that were assumed by the Department of Health and Ageing.[19][20][21]

The department was replaced with the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities on 20 December 2017.

References[edit]

  1. ^ CA 9427: Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 9 April 2014 
  2. ^ "Annual Report 2015–16". infrastructure.gov.au. 
  3. ^ "Our role, responsibilities and services". Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development. Commonwealth of Australia. 15 October 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "Administrative Arrangements Order" (PDF). Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Commonwealth of Australia. 18 September 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 September 2013. Retrieved 27 October 2013. 
  5. ^ Brookfield (2012). "Brookfield Office Properties: Infrastructure House". Brookfield. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "About BITRE". Department of Infrastructure and Transport. 26 February 2013. Retrieved 15 March 2013. 
  7. ^ "Transport Security". Department of Infrastructure and Transport. Archived from the original on 26 June 2013. 
  8. ^ "About - Aviation Security Obligations - The Office of Transport Security (OTS)". Aviation Security International Systems Training. 29 August 2013. Retrieved 27 September 2013. 
  9. ^ Department of Infrastructure and Transport (4 October 2011). "Department of Infrastructure and Transport Annual Report 2010-11". Department of Infrastructure and Transport. 
  10. ^ Department of Infrastructure and Transport (3 November 2010). "Secretary". Department of Infrastructure and Transport. Archived from the original on 26 November 2010. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  11. ^ Keane, Bernard (15 May 2009). "Canberra's new mandarin: meet Mike Mrdak". Crikey. Archived from the original on 18 June 2009. Retrieved 13 October 2012. 
  12. ^ "Mrdak takes up new role amid shakeup of departmental secretaries". Australian Aviation. 7 September 2017. Archived from the original on 7 September 2017. Retrieved 16 March 2018. 
  13. ^ Australian Government. "Budget Paper No. 1". 2013-14 Commonwealth Budget. Statement 6: Expenses and Net Capital Investment: Australian Government. Archived from the original on 24 September 2013. 
  14. ^ Department of Infrastructure and Transport (27 February 2013). "Annual Report 2011–12". Australian Government. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  15. ^ a b Australian Public Service Commission (November 2012). "Capability review: Department of Infrastructure and Transport" (PDF). APSC. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 May 2013. Retrieved 15 March 2013. 
  16. ^ Department of Finance and Deregulation (1 July 2012). "Flipchart of FMA Act Agencies / CAC Act Bodies". Department of Finance and Deregulation. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  17. ^ "Department of the Treasury Portfolio Budget Statements 2013-14". Australian Government. May 2013. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  18. ^ a b "Infrastructure and Transport Portfolio Budget Statements 2013-14" (PDF). Australian Government Budget 2013-14. Australian Government. Retrieved 2 July 2013. 
  19. ^ Packham, Ben (18 September 2013). "Tony Abbott puts broom through bureaucracy". The Australian. Retrieved 24 September 2013. 
  20. ^ Tony Abbott (18 September 2013). "The Coalition will restore strong, stable and accountable government". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Press release). Canberra, Australia: Commonwealth of Australia. Archived from the original on 20 September 2013. Retrieved 20 September 2013. 
  21. ^ Wilson, Lauren (19 September 2013). "Coalition carves up the public service". The Australian. Retrieved 24 September 2013.