Departmental financial incompetence exposed

“The financial incompetence of the Department of Mines and Petroleum to manage a mine safety levy and Trust Fund has been exposed today,” said Simon Bennison, Chief Executive Officer, Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC).
“The WA Minister for Mines and Petroleum, Hon Bill Johnston has advised that a levy paid by the mining industry for the full costs attributable to the Mines Safety Branch of DMP will increase by 33% for the 2017/18 year.
“In managing a $30million annual operating budget the Government has now found that the Trust Fund is approximately $10 million in deficit. Operating costs have increased by over 50% in 5 years with no clear explanation.
“This is an unbelievable and unsatisfactory development which will have a major cost impact across the whole mining and mineral exploration industry.
“AMEC has sought advice on how this could have happened, and what action had the Department taken to ensure that its expenses were covered by the annual levy. 
“There is a complete lack of transparency and accountability around the Mines Safety Levy, and how it is calculated. This needs to be addressed immediately.” said Mr Bennison.

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