Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.
Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.
Environment and Heritage Portfolio
Explanation of Additional Estimates 2003-2004
Commonwealth of Australia 2004
- Accrual Accounting
- System of accounting where items are brought to account and included in the financial statements as they are earned or incurred, rather than as they are received or paid.
- Additional Estimates
- Where amounts appropriated at Budget time are insufficient, Parliament may appropriate more funds to portfolios through the Additional Estimates Acts.
- Administered Items
- Expenses, revenues, assets or liabilities managed by agencies on behalf of the Commonwealth. Agencies do not control administered items. Administered expenses include grants, subsidies and benefits. In many cases, administered expenses fund the delivery of third party outputs.
- An authorisation by Parliament to spend moneys from the Consolidated Revenue Fund for a particular purpose.
- Annual Appropriation
- Two Appropriation Bills (Appropriation Bills 1 and 2) are introduced into Parliament in May and comprise the Budget for the financial year beginning 1 July. Further Bills are introduced later in the financial year as part of the Additional Estimates budget process (Appropriation Bills 3 and 4).
- Future economic benefits controlled by an entity as a result of past transactions or other past events.
- Bills or Acts
- These are Appropriation Bills Nos. 3 and 4, and a separate Bill for the Parliamentary Departments (Appropriations (Parliamentary Departments) Bill No. 2). These Bills are introduced into Parliament after the Budget Bills.
- Capital expenditure
- Expenditure by an agency to obtain capital projects, for example purchasing a building.
- Capital Use Charge
- The Capital Use Charge (CUC) is a dividend requirement levied on Commonwealth General Government Sector agencies and authorities. The CUC payment is based on those agencies' and authorities' Departmental net assets at financial year end. The Capital Use Charge has been discontinued from 1 July 2003.
- Consolidated Revenue Fund
- Section 81 of the Constitution stipulates that all revenue raised or money received by the Commonwealth forms the one consolidated revenue fund (CRF). The CRF is not a bank account. The Official Public Account reflects most of the operations of the CRF.
- Apportionment of an asset's capital value as an expense over its estimated useful life to take account of normal usage, obsolescence, or the passage of time.
- Equity or Net Assets
- Residual interest in the assets of an entity after deduction of its liabilities.
- A systematic, objective assessment of the appropriateness, effectiveness or efficiency of an intervention. Depending on the purpose of the evaluation and the stage of development of the relevant business, an evaluation may focus on more than one of these issues.
- Total value of all the resources consumed in producing goods and services.
- Fair Value
- Valuation methodology: The amount for which an asset could be exchanged, or a liability settled, between knowledge and willing parties in an arm's length transaction. The fair value can be affected by the conditions of the sale, market conditions and the intentions of the asset holder.
- Forward Estimates
- The estimated revenues, expenses and associated financial statements for the three outyears past the Budget year.
- What the agency 'owes' (obligations to make payments or render services as a result of past transactions).
- A decision by Cabinet or the Prime Minister that has been finalised in the context of the 2003 04 Budget and has resulted in a change in expenditure from 2003 04 onwards.
- Operating Result
- Equals revenue less expense.
- The Government's objectives in each portfolio area. Outcomes are the desired results, impacts or consequences for the Australian community influenced by the actions of the Commonwealth. Actual outcomes are the results or impacts actually achieved.
- Output Groups
- A logical aggregation of outputs, where useful, based either on homogeneity, type of product or beneficiary target group. Aggregation may also be needed for the provision of adequate information for performance monitoring; or based on a materiality test.
- The goods and services produced by agencies on behalf of government for external organisations or individuals. Outputs also include goods and services for other areas of government external to the agency.
- The proficiency of an agency or authority in acquiring resources economically and using those resources efficiently and effectively in achieving outcomes.
- Performance Information
- A valuable tool that is the foundation for agency accountability and transparency. Performance Information assists in allocating resources, identifying areas of performance improvement, improving internal and external accountability and measures individual achievement.
- Performance Measures
- A more precise measure than indicators. Performance measures relate to outcomes, outputs, third party outputs and administered items. They are used when there is a direct causal link between an intervention and a measurable change in performance.
- One of the three key efficiency indicators. The amount the government or the community pays for the delivery of agreed outputs.
- Prescribed Agency
- An agency prescribed under the Financial Management and Accountability (FMA) Act, 1997. The entity receives its appropriation directly, is financially separate and has direct accountability to the Minister.
- One of the three key efficiency indicators. Relates to the characteristics by which customers or stakeholders judge an organisation, product or service. Assessment of quality involves use of information gathered from interested parties to identify differences between user's expectations and experiences.
- One of the three key efficiency indicators. Size of an output. Count or volume measures. How many or how much.
- Total value of resources earned or received in respect of goods and services provided.
- Special Account
- Balances existing within the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF), that are supported by standing appropriations (Financial Management and Accountability (FMA) Act 1997, ss.20 and 21). Special accounts allow money in the CRF to be acknowledged as set-aside (hypothecated) for a particular purpose. Amounts credited to a Special Account may only be spent for the purposes of the Special Account. Special Accounts can only be established by a written determination of the Finance Minister (s.20 FMA Act) or through an Act of Parliament (referred to in s.21 of the FMA Act).
- Special Appropriation
- An amount of money appropriated by a particular Act of Parliament for a specific purpose and number of years. For special appropriations the authority to withdraw funds from the Consolidated Revenue Fund does not generally cease at the end of the financial year.
Standing appropriations are a sub-category consisting of ongoing special appropriations - the amount appropriated will depend on circumstances specified in the legislation.
- People, organisations or groups with an interest or stake in the line of business.