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Corporate Plan

Introduction: CEO’s Statement


Leonie McGregor

This is the first Corporate Plan produced for the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority (IPEA) in accordance with the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act).

Our objective is to advise, audit and report on parliamentarians’ work expenses in a professional and independent manner. We aim to provide clear advice to parliamentarians and their staff on travel and work related expenses to help support them in undertaking their duties and to enable taxpayer money to be spent efficiently, effectively and ethically.

IPEA has operated as an executive agency from its establishment on 3 April 2017. From 1 July 2017, we became a statutory authority with the commencement of the substantive provisions of the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Act 2017.

As the accountable authority of the IPEA, I am pleased to present the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority’s (IPEA) Corporate Plan, which covers the periods 2017-18 through 2020-21, as required under paragraph 35(1) of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act).

Leonie McGregor
Acting Chief Executive Officer
Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority

1 July 2017


IPEA’s organisational objectives are to:

  • Provide clear advice to parliamentarians and their staff on travel and work-related expenses to help support them in their respective roles; and

  • Provide independent oversight of the work expenses provided to current and former parliamentarians and their staff through our auditing and reporting functions.

As an organisation, IPEA will strive to deliver our primary functions, which relate to advice, reporting and audit. These functions include:

  • Providing personal advice to parliamentarians and MOP(S) Act employees on travel expenses, allowances, and related expenses;

  • Monitoring parliamentarians and MOP(S) Act employees regarding travel expenses, allowances, and related expenses;

  • Administering travel expenses, allowances, and related expenses, including processing of these claims;

  • Publically reporting on work expenses under the applicable framework; and

  • Auditing work expense claims.

Operating environment

In a dynamic external environment, IPEA will operate in an independent, objective and professional manner to deliver on our organisational purposes. We are committed to pursuing our twin goals of providing support to parliamentarians and former parliamentarians in the exercise of their functions, and creating a culture of accountability and transparency in the provision and use of parliamentary work expenses.

Our environment is influenced by:

  • Technological advances;

  • Dynamic social and political events;

  • Changes in legislation and Government structures; and

  • Public sector reform within a defined fiscal environment.

IPEA will continually assess and seek to materially update our ICT digital working environment to create an infrastructure and system which improves IPEA’s administration, advisory, reporting and audit functions.

We will maintain and foster effective relationships with Parliamentarians, and other stakeholders, including the broader Australian community.

IPEA understands that we can increase stakeholders’ confidence in our role through the effective delivery of our range of services and by clearly communicating what it is we do, and how we do it.


IPEA places a high priority on our people and, in order to achieve our purposes, we must possess strong leadership, advisory and delivery skills and capabilities.

As a small agency, we will focus on the attraction and retention of talented and highly adaptable staff who are able to operate in a dynamic working environment. Our aim is to have an inclusive, diverse and flexible workforce equipped with the right skills to deliver on our objectives.

In terms of capability, IPEA’s key priorities are:

  • Talent management: attracting and supporting the best possible staff with the relevant skills to achieve our purposes;

  • Collaboration and consultation: encouraging a culture which values collaboration and consultation throughout, reaping the benefits of a small organisation;

  • Flexible conditions: supporting our staff with flexible conditions so as to encourage a balance between work and family responsibilities;

  • Learning and development: developing strategies to develop staff, building and strengthening IPEA’s capabilities; and

  • Inclusion and diversity: building an inclusive and diverse workplace.

Culture and Values

As a new statutory authority, we have an opportunity to forge a distinct and resilient organisational culture. This culture will build upon the Australian Public Service values, emphasising:

  • Independence;

  • Integrity;

  • Impartiality;

  • Transparency;

  • Responsiveness; and

  • Professionalism.

Our culture will reflect the aspirations and objectives of the leadership and staff of IPEA and of the Members of the Authority.

It will empower our people to collaborate and consult to achieve results and make a difference. We will work responsibly with a strong service orientation.

In 2017-18, IPEA will develop a Service Charter that will make clear our commitment and the values that will underpin achievement of our purposes.

Risk and Oversight Management

IPEA is in the process of developing its risk management framework. As a statutory authority, IPEA’s governance is built upon the foundations of the Independent Parliamentary Expenses Authority Act 2017, the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013, the Public Service Act 1999 and the Australian Public Service Code of Conduct.

IPEA will apply risk management principles that are fit for purpose. We will strive to deliver efficient and effective decision-making and planning, manage uncertainty and manage our resources to obtain desired outcomes.

IPEA’s risk management framework will be designed to:

  • Support a culture that encourages people to report incidents and take ownership of problems;

  • Embed risk management thinking in all activities, and

  • Align with the PGPA Act, and the Australian Government’s expectations as described in the Commonwealth Risk Management Policy.

We recognise that within our operating environment we wish to pursue opportunities, adopt new technology, achieve objectives and meet our responsibilities. However, IPEA has a low risk tolerance in relation to:

  • Dishonest, deceptive or fraudulent conduct;

  • The unauthorised disclosure of official information; and

  • Dangers to the health, safety and wellbeing of IPEA’s employees.

Members of the Authority

IPEA is guided by Members of the Authority and each Member has a range of relevant skills and experience. IPEA's Members perform a key leadership and governance function.

IPEA Members will:

  • Set, review and oversee IPEA’s strategic direction and governance arrangements consistent with IPEA’s objectives to:

    • Administer and provide advice on travel related work expenses; and

    • Provide independent oversight of the work expenses provided to current and former parliamentarians and their staff through IPEA’s auditing and reporting functions.


IPEA’s total resourcing as detailed in the 2016-17 Portfolio Budget Statement is:

  • $20.968 million from 2016-17; and

  • $313.809 million over the forward estimates from 2017-18.

IPEA’s 2017-18 operational budget of $10.142 million will fund around 66 staff as well as the authority’s auditing, reporting, board and secretariat functions.  IPEA will purchase some of its corporate and back office services through a user charging arrangement with the Department of Finance.

IPEA will manage a budget of $31.030 million to fund the travel expenses of current and former parliamentarians and others and a budget of $0.445 million to fund expenses related to the Parliamentary Retirement Travel Act 2002 (formerly the Members of Parliament (Life Gold Pass) Act 2002).  IPEA will manage $34.362 million to fund the travel expenses for the staff of members of parliament. 

Details of IPEA’s budget estimates, average staffing levels and financial statements for the reporting periods are set out in IPEA’s Portfolio Budget Statements 2017-18.

Use the arrows on the left/right of the screen (or the dots at the bottom of the page) to see the Resourcing table

Resourcing (continued)







Total Departmental Appropriation







Annual Administered Appropriation Bill 1

Members of Parliament Staff Travel Costs







Special appropriations

Parliamentary Retirement Travel Act 2002







Parliamentary Entitlements Act 1990







Total Administered Appropriation







Total Funding








Consistent with the Portfolio Budget Statements 2017-2018, the below table provides IPEA’s performance targets over the next four years in terms of supporting current and former parliamentarians in the delivery of independent oversight and advice on work and travel resources.



Performance criteria






Services to Ministers, Office-holders, Senators, Members and their staff meet agreed service standards.

  • 95% of client contacts acknowledged within 24 hours and responded to within agreed timeframes.
  • 95% of payments will be made within agreed timeframes.
  • 100% of Parliamentary expenditure reports will be compiled and published within agreed timeframes.
  • 100% of audits of individual Parliamentarian’s expenses will be completed within agreed timeframes.

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