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Report on Government Services

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This report was released on 31 January 2001. It has been produced by the Steering Committee for the Review of Commonwealth/State Service Provision (SCRCSSP). The report has been published in two volumes. Also released with the report are attachment tables. These are not part of the printed report but are available on this web page.

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Media release

The Report on Government Services 2001 was released today. It is the sixth annual report in the series which examines the performance of the Commonwealth, State and Territory governments in the areas of education, health, justice, emergency management, community services and housing. Together, these services accounted for approximately $64 billion in government spending in 1999-2000 representing nearly 30 per cent of government expenditure.

The Chairman of the Steering Committee which comprises representatives from all governments, Gary Banks said 'governments have made great strides over the past seven years in providing information about the performance of key services. A further indication of governments' commitment to this process is the recent decision of the Council of Australian Governments to involve the Review in work being undertaken to improve reporting on services to Indigenous people'.

The Report provides a summary of comparative performance information for a range of government agencies. The information can help governments identify potential benchmarks and strengthen incentives to improve performance. It helps them to identify scope for improvement in the delivery of their services in terms of outcomes, quality, access/equity, appropriateness and efficiency.

Mr Banks, who is also Chairman of the Productivity Commission, remarked that 'while there is still plenty of scope for improvement, this year's Report has made some significant advances. For example, comparability in financial reporting has improved in the areas of emergency management, protection and support services and hospitals expenditure. There has also been an increase in Indigenous reporting and, in light of the COAG decision, we expect reporting in this area to improve further next year'.

Other advances in reporting this year include:

  • a new performance indicator framework for public and community housing
  • new and improved data for the effectiveness of breast screening and mental health services.


The following data were amended after the Report went to print. All chapters and attachment tables have been amended on the website to reflect these errata.

Chapter 3 School education

Table 3A.60 Total government expenditure on government schools in WA in 1998-99 was $1 552 398, and the breakdown of this expenditure is reflected in the revised table 3A.60 on the Review web page.

Table 3A.68 Average expenditure per student in WA for 1998-99 has been revised in table 3A.68 on the Review web page.

Table 3A.72 Participation rates for government schools in SA in 1997 should be 51.9 to age 16 year, 31.9 to age 17 years, 4.7 to age 18 years and 1.1 to age 19 years.

Attachment 3A has been updated on the Review web page to reflect these changes.

Chapter 12 Aged care services

Table 12A.28 Time span for latest data should read July 1999-June 2000, not January 2000-June 2000.

Attachment 12A has been updated on the Review web page to reflect this change.

Chapter 12 Services for people with a disability

Page 612 Table 13.2 and Table 13A.10, people with a profound or severe core activity restriction and the total population in the labour force, 1998. Labour force participation rate for people with a profound/severe core activity restriction for Australia should be 35 per cent, not 59 per cent. Employment rate for people with a profound/severe core activity restriction for Australia should be 89 per cent, not 81 per cent.

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Cover, Copyright, Foreword, Contents, Acronyms and Abbreviations, Glossary, Terms of Reference

Appendix A Statistical appendix (Updated 24 April 2001)

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Supplementary reviews of government services.

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2009 Review of the Report on Government Services

COAG endorsed the review's recommendations at its 7 December 2009 meeting.

The Steering Committee endorsed the Independent Reference Group's Review of the Report on Government Services' performance indicator framework Report in September 2010.

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