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Thursday, February 23, 2006

Big changes in NSW public sector

The NSW Government’s Economic and Financial Statement released today contains no specific reference to administrative issues associated with privacy and access to government information. The continuation of the 1% efficiency dividend is one factor designed to reduce the overall public sector workforce by 5000 over the next few years, and privacy and FOI functions will be affected by the planned mergers and amalgamations of government agencies.

Reducing numbers of staff while not changing the functions that must be performed is usually not a workable solution to limiting the costs of government.

The Statement refers to the Audit of Expenditure and Assets Report commissioned in August last year and relies on that report as justification for many of the announced changes. It also refers to a number of other recommendations still to be considered. However the Report itself does not appear to have been released today.

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