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Reorganisation of Appropriations for Policy Advice: Guide for Departments

2  Overview for Departments

2.1  What Needs to Happen

The goal of this work is to establish a new appropriation structure that allocates the cost of producing policy advice outputs into separate appropriations or output classes within a Multi-class Output Appropriation (MCOA). The new appropriation structure should make any expenditure on policy advice fully transparent, as well as improve the transparency and reliability of costs contained in related appropriations.

The reorganisation of appropriations for policy advice is to be implemented at a Vote level. Departments that administer more than one Vote need to reorganise the appropriation structure of each of the Votes they administer.

Departments are required to:

  • identify where activities to produce policy advice outputs are completed, as per the common definition. Generally these activities will be completed in policy units, however, they are also likely to occur in teams devoted to Crown entity monitoring, ministerial services, research and evaluation or forecasting and modelling
  • identify the cost of producing their policy advice outputs, as per the common definition of policy advice detailed in section 3.2 and Annex 2 of this document. These costs could currently be contained in existing appropriations for policy advice or in any other existing appropriations
  • include the cost of producing these outputs under newly established, separate output expense appropriations or output classes of an MCOA
  • disestablish existing policy advice related appropriations unless they are called “policy advice” in which case only the scope statements need to be changed, and
  • identify and transfer costs that do not produce policy advice but are currently included in policy advice related appropriations to other existing or new appropriations.

2.2  Where the Crown acquires policy advice outputs from Crown entities

Where the Crown funds policy advice outputs produced by a Crown entity, the same expectations apply, and the reorganisation is to be carried out within the relevant non-departmental output appropriations by the department that administers the Vote.

2.3  What Change Will Look Like – An Example

The following example illustrates how a typical appropriation structure of a fictional “Vote Music” may be transformed into a new appropriation structure that allocates the total cost of producing policy advice into one single output expense appropriation.

Please note that is only an example. There are a number of different options available as to how a department may organise the policy advice appropriations it administers. In particular, a department may wish to bundle the costs of its policy advice outputs into an output class within an MCOA, rather than a single output expense appropriation as in the example.

Currently “Vote Music”, has four output appropriations:

  • Appropriation 1 is titled “Advice to the Minister”, and all activities contained in this appropriation meet the common definition of policy advice.
  • Appropriation 2 is titled “Ministerial Servicing”, and only one activity contained in this appropriation meets the common definition; the other one does not.
  • Appropriation 3 is titled “Classical Music”; and contains one activity that meets the common definition and one that does not.
  • Appropriation 4 is titled “Rock Music” and neither of the activities included meet the common definition.

“The Ministry of Music” has to reorganise the appropriation structure of “Vote Music” which it administers. The reorganisation includes the following changes:

  • A new output expense appropriation titled “Policy Advice” is established.
  • The cost of all activities contained in Appropriation 1 “Advice to the Minister” are transferred into the new appropriation “Policy Advice” as they all meet the common definition of policy advice.
  • The cost of the activity contained in Appropriation 2 “Ministerial Servicing”, that meets the common definition, is transferred into the new appropriation “Policy Advice”.
  • The cost of the other activity in Appropriation 2 “Ministerial Servicing” is transferred into Appropriation 3 “Classical Music”.
  • The cost of the activity contained in Appropriation 3 “Classical Music”, that meets the common definition, is transferred into the new appropriation “Policy Advice”.
  • Appropriation 4 “Rock Music” doesn't change.
  • Appropriations 1 and 2 are disestablished.
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