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Financial performance

This section summarises the Commission’s financial performance during 2016–17. More detail is available in Part 4, which includes the independent auditor’s report and the Commission’s audited financial statements for the year ended 30 June 2017.

Departmental activities

The Commission’s departmental activities involve the use of assets, liabilities, income and expenses controlled or incurred by the Commission in its own right.

The Commission’s total income for 2016–17 was $41.1 million. Government appropriation accounted for 49.4 per cent of this; non-appropriation income accounted for the remainder. Table 3 shows the Commission’s income since 2014–15. Table 4 details income sources since 2014–15.

As is evident, appropriation funding decreased from $20.6 million in 2015–16 to $20.3 million in 2016–17; this was a result of the impact of the efficiency dividend.

Table 3: Total income, by source, 2014–15 to 2016–17
Source 2014–15
($ million)
2015–16
($ million)
2016–17
($ million)
Appropriation 21.6 20.6 20.3
Non-appropriation 22.8 21.9 20.8
Total 44.4 42.5 41.1
Table 4: Proportion of total income by source, 2014–15 to 2016–17
Source 2014–15
(per cent)
2015–16
(per cent)
2016–17
(per cent)
Appropriation 48.7 48.5 49.4
Non-appropriation 51.3 51.5 50.6

Table 5 shows the non-appropriation income the Commission received from sales of goods and the rendering of services in 2015–16 and 2016–17. Table 6 shows the proportion of non-appropriation income the Commission received from sales of goods and services in 2015–16 and 2016–17.

Table 5: Non-appropriation income received, by source, 2015–16 and 2016–17
Source 2015–16 actual
($ million)
2016–17 estimate
($ million)
2016–17 actual
($ million)
Learning and development 14.0 12.0 12.9
Employment services 1.8 1.8 1.8
International assistance 3.3 2.9 2.3
Workplace relations 1.4 1.2 1.7
Better practice and evaluation 0.9 1.8 1.7
Capability reviews 0.3 0.1 0.1
Other 0.2 0.1 0.3
Total 21.9 19.9 20.8
Table 6: Proportion of non-appropriation income received, by source, 2015–16 and 2016–17
Source 2015–16
(per cent)
2016–17
(per cent)
Learning and development 64 62
Employment services 8 9
International assistance 15 11
Workplace relations 7 8
Better practice and evaluation 4 8
Capability reviews 1 0
Other 1 2

Income from learning and development programs amounted to $12.9 million in 2016–17 and accounted for 31 per cent of the Commission’s total income from all sources. This compares with $14.0 million in 2015–16.

The majority of the Commission’s income is earned in a competitive market, in which entities can choose service providers and determine the level of service they require. Demand can fluctuate, so the Commission has management strategies to ensure that resources devoted to this area are in keeping with the revenue earned.

The year 2016–17 was the first year of a three-year funding agreement to support leadership and learning services and the remuneration survey. The Commission received $3.4 million from 49 government entities, accounting for 16 per cent of non-appropriation income. This compares with $3.3 million from 50 government entities in 2015–16, accounting for 15 per cent of non-appropriation income for that year.

The Commission recorded an operating surplus of $0.5 million in 2016–17. A deficit of $0.9 million was recorded in 2015–16. Excluding the impact of depreciation expenses, the Commission’s underlying operating surplus in 2016–17 was $1.5 million.

The Commission incurred restructuring costs of $0.6 million in 2016–17 compared with $1.0 million in 2015–16. The 2016–17 costs were incurred as part of our strategy to accommodate tightening budgetary requirements in future years.

The administered program

The Commission’s administered program facilitates the payment of parliamentarians’ and judicial office holders’ remuneration, allowances and entitlements. We receive special appropriations for the program and the Department of the Senate, the Department of the House of Representatives and the Attorney-General’s Department make all payments.

Payments for 2016–17 amounted to $63.2 million compared with $60.2 million in 2015–16. The increase in payments was a result of the impact of the 2016 federal election.

Payments made are reported in note 4.1c to the Commission’s financial statements.