Role of the Auditor-General

The Auditor-General is an independent officer of the Victorian Parliament, appointed to examine the management of resources within the public sector on behalf of Parliament and Victorians.  

Functions—The Auditor-General conducts and reports on financial and performance audits.

Office—The Victorian Auditor-General’s Office, which has around 185 staff, supports the Auditor-General.

Independence—The Auditor-General cannot be directed by anyone, including Parliament and the government. Dismissal is only by a resolution of both Houses of Parliament, which is a key protection of independence. 

Legislation—The Audit Act 1994 gives the Auditor-General powers and functions.  This includes the legal basis for:

  • accessing all government information
  • freedom to report on findings arising from audits.

Parliament—Although independent, the Auditor-General is still accountable to Parliament, via the Public Accounts and Estimates Committee (PAEC). For example:

  • PAEC has a consultative role in the formulation of objectives and scope for selected performance audits undertaken by the Auditor-General including:
    • collaborative audits
    • audits that were not in the Annual Plan
    • where there has been a material change to the objectives or issues of an audit in the Annual Plan
    • ‘follow-the-dollar’ performance audits.
  • VAGO is audited regularly—financial and performance audits—by auditors recommended by PAEC.

 

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