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Checks and balances at the LGAQ
In all the hustle and bustle of daily goings-on, it’s easy to forget basics like how a good set of checks and balances can do wonders for strategy and accountability.
So, in the lead up to the LGAQ’s annual general meeting on 31 October I thought it was worthwhile to give up an update on just who keeps a watch on the activities and finances of your Association. In other words, what follows is a summary of our governance and oversight arrangements.
First and foremost, it’s the members who oversee LGAQ Ltd; a public company incorporated under Commonwealth Corporations Law. The directors of LGAQ Ltd are required to annually present three documents to our AGM which members debate and must vote on. Those are the President’s address, the Annual Report and the consolidated financial statements (at this meeting, for the year ended 30 June 2018).
Then, of course, every four years our members elect a 15-person Policy Executive from their peers. They in turn elect a board of four directors to run the business of the LGAQ. Lastly, at the first AGM after the quadrennial council elections, members elect a President for the next four years.
So, there you have the daily, monthly and by monthly stewards of the Association’s assets, businesses, direction, policies and activities.
Importantly, because of its local government parentage, the LGAQ is audited by the Auditor-General of Queensland. The same goes for all our subsidiary companies and indeed LGM and LGW. It’s the Auditor-Generals Office itself, not a contractor, that conducts our audit.
Better still, the LGAQ Internal Audit Committee contains not one but two former auditors-general , Chair Graeme Carpenter, the former Northern Territory auditor-general, and Glen Poole, the former Queensland auditor-general. The current Deputy Auditor-General of Queensland also sits on that committee which has an independent budget and meets four times a year.
Regarding LGW, the LGAQ, as trustee and holder of a private workers compensation licence, is audited by and reports annually to the State Government Office of Industrial Relations.
The Queensland Industrial Relations Commission has oversight over the LGAQ because we are the sole registered industrial organisation for local government in Queensland. That oversight includes the LGAQ’s own election process. As returning officer for the LGAQ, I must notify and get approval from QIRC Registrar to conduct elections.
Add the Electoral Commission of Queensland, to whom we must report any payments made to the political parties for events we attend, namely corporate observer packages at their annual conferences, plus any paid media advertising campaigns we conduct throughout a financial year.
Finally, because Peak Services is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) it is overseen by the Australian Skills Quality Authority.
That is one hell of a lot of checks and balances, folks. Across the LGAQ and its subsidiaries we have the best part of five full time equivalent staff working solely on compliance matters.
The Association is in very safe hands with abundant measures to protect our members interests.
Local Government Association of Queensland
LG House, 25 Evelyn Street, Newstead Qld 4006