Publications produced during 2019

This is a list of the publications produced in 2019 (the most recent items are listed first).
Managing freshwater quality: Challenges and opportunities

September 2019: In 2011, we published a report on how effectively Waikato Regional Council, Taranaki Regional Council, Horizons Regional Council, and Environment Southland managed the effects of land use on freshwater quality in their regions. We found that the effectiveness of the four regional councils' approaches was variable. In this report, we assess the progress they have made since 2011.

Public accountability: A matter of trust and confidence

September 2019: This discussion paper is the first phase in a programme of work about the future of public accountability. It is not a detailed review of New Zealand's current constitutional arrangements, but explores the role public accountability plays in maintaining trust and confidence in the public sector.

Annual plan 2019/20

June 2019: The Annual Plan 2019/20 sets out our proposed work programme for 2019/20. The work programme describes the second year of our three-year Procurement work programme and the work we will complete under our Water management theme. We will begin work under our Improving the lives of New Zealanders theme. Our plan also describes the good practice guidance we intend to update, our work focused on ethics and integrity, and our continued work on assessing the state of the public sector accountability system.

Severance payments: A guide for the public sector

June 2019: This guide is intended to help public sector employers when considering making a severance payment to a departing employee. It replaces our 2012 publication, and has been updated to reflect more recent case law and changes in accounting standards.

Using different processes to protect marine environments

June 2019: This report looks at how two groups used two different processes that generated advice to Ministers for establishing marine protection, including marine reserves. Each group used a process that was different in terms of its origin, purpose, scope, and expected outcomes. We examined how inclusive, transparent, and well informed the processes were to identify lessons that could be applied to support the establishment of other marine protection measures.

Our 2018 work about local government

May 2019: This report presents the main findings from our audits of councils' long-term plans (LTPs), the results of our annual audits, and other work in local government during 2017/18.

Inquiry into procurement of work by Westland District Council at Franz Josef

March 2019: This report concerns a decision of the Westland District Council to carry out work at Franz Josef to protect the town's wastewater treatment plant from flooding. The work was carried out on an urgent basis and resulted in the construction of a new 700-metres-long stopbank on the bank of the Waiho River. In this report, we acknowledge the serious nature of the flood risk the Council was dealing with, and the motivation of the elected members who were driving the decision to act in the community's best interests. However, we have serious concerns about what was done in this case.

Tertiary Education Institutions: Changes to the requirements for performance reporting in annual reports

February 2019: Recent changes to the Education Act 1989 require tertiary education institutes' statement of service performance (SSP) for 2019 to comply with generally accepted accounting practice. In this letter we discuss the upcoming changes to SSP requirements for tertiary education institutes' annual reports, provide some guidance on performance reporting, and recommend next steps for further information and support.