Appendix H: Information on specific statutory requirements

Information on the specific statutory requirements regarding workplace health and safety can be found in the Workplace Health and Safety section of this report.

Information on the specific statutory requirements regarding freedom of information can be found in the Freedom of information section of this report.

Advertising and market research

In accordance with s.311A of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, the principal officer of every Commonwealth agency is required to include a statement in their annual report setting out particulars of all amounts paid by, or on behalf of, the agency during the reporting period to:

  • advertising agencies
  • market research organisations
  • direct mail organisations, and
  • media advertising agencies.

The Commission did not conduct any advertising campaigns, engage polling organisations or engage in direct mail activities during 2014–15.

As the total amount paid to any organisation was less than $12,565 (inclusive of GST), details have not been included in this report.

Legal services expenditure

In compliance with the requirements of the Legal Services Directions 2005, the Commission reports that the total legal services expenditure for 2014–15 was $1,220,977.28 (GST exclusive). The amount relates solely to external legal services. Details are available on the Budgets and expenditure page of the Commission's website.

Ecologically sustainable development

Australian Government agencies are required to report on their performance regarding the environment and ecologically sustainable development in line with s.516A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

The Commission operates to ensure energy resources are utilised as efficiently as practicable in the context of a working tribunal and that it maintains a healthy working environment for both the staff and the public.

The Commission's procurement decisions have regard to environmental management requirements including purchasing locally-produced recycled paper and energy efficient lighting.

Programs are in place for the recycling of paper, packaging, batteries, equipment, toner and other materials where possible to reduce the carbon footprint generated by the Commission.

The Commission continued its relationship with Close the Loop, an organisation affiliated with Planet Ark, for toner replacement. Close the Loop reuses the plastics from toner cartridges for other purposes, such as manufacturing eWood which can be used in retaining walls and landscaping materials, and creates pens using ink leftover in the discarded cartridges.

Kitchens in a number of offices have separate bins to manage waste including organic, recycling and general waste.

The Melbourne and Sydney offices have sensor lighting installed in hearing, conference, meeting rooms and offices which have a timer mechanism to automatically switch lighting off when the rooms are not occupied. Energy efficient T5 lighting and shower timers in all showers also continue to operate in these offices.

The Commission has continued to reduce its carbon footprint by utilising its new video conferencing system, providing a viable alternative to travel.

The Commission ensures that new leases over a certain size have a green rating. The Commission actively encourages its landlords to increase their NABERS rating, a national rating system that measures the environmental performance of Australian buildings, tenancies and homes.

The Commission participated in and supported Earth Hour 2015, a campaign to create awareness of global warming, encouraging people to adopt better energy conservation habits, by turning off lights, appliances and desktop computers in all offices for Earth Hour on 28 March 2015.

Discretionary grants and grant programs

The Commission did not administer any discretionary or other grant programs during the reporting period, and no discretionary or other grants were made.

No research partnerships were awarded in 2014–15. Information on research partnerships that were awarded in other years is available on the Commission's website.

Corrections to previous annual report

Page 11, Our Structure, Members

This section should have noted that Commissioner McCusker was appointed as a dual appointee to the Commission in August 2013 and then retired in October 2013.

Page 25, Chart 3: Website visits

The figure for desktop visits, 3.25 million, is incorrect and it should instead have read 2.75 million desktop visits.

Page 70, Determining anti-bullying applications, The first six months

In 2013–14 the total number of applications processed was incorrectly stated as 343; this figure should have been 344.

Clarifications to previous annual report

Page 28, Table 3: Hearings and conferences by location, and page 29, Chart 6: Number of sittings for various types of applications, 2009–10 to 2013–14

The data in Table 3 and Chart 6 may have appeared inconsistent. Different counting methodologies were applied to the data which resulted in different figures.

This year the methodologies have been refined to ensure that the data now appears consistent.

Page 28, Table 2: Outcomes of appeals determined from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014, and page 43, Table 17: Unfair dismissals—appeals

The data in Table 2 and Table 17 may have appeared inconsistent. Different counting methodologies were applied to the data which resulted in different figures relating to unfair dismissal appeals.

This year the methodologies have been refined to ensure that the data now appears consistent.

Commonwealth Disability Strategy

Since 1994, Commonwealth departments and agencies have reported on their performance as policy adviser, purchaser, employer, regulator and provider under the Commonwealth Disability Strategy. In 2007–08, reporting on the employer role was transferred to the Australian Public Service Commission's State of the Service Report and the APS Statistical Bulletin. These reports are available at www.apsc.gov.au. From 2010–11, departments and agencies have no longer been required to report on these functions.

The Commonwealth Disability Strategy has been overtaken by the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020, which sets out a 10-year national policy framework to improve the lives of people with disability, promote participation and create a more inclusive society. A high level two-yearly report will track progress against each of the six outcome areas of the Strategy and present a picture of how people with disability are faring. The first of these reports will be available in 2015, and can be found at www.dss.gov.au/nds.