28 June, 2017
Mr Simon Cohen
Deputy Secretary, Regulation and
Director, Consumer Affairs Victoria
Level 17, 121 Exhibition Street
MELBOURNE VIC 3001
Dear Mr Cohen
Statement of Expectations for Consumer Affairs Victoria and the Business Licensing Authority
I am pleased to provide you with this Statement of Expectations (SOE) for Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) and Business Licensing Authority (BLA). This SOE applies for the period 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2019, or until otherwise amended. Please note that a reference to CAV in this SOE also includes the BLA.
Improving the administration and enforcement of regulation
This SOE sets out my expectations of CAV's continued contribution to the Government's Regulation Reform Program to reduce red tape affecting businesses, not-for-profit organisations, government service providers and households by promoting greater efficiency and effectiveness in the administration and enforcement of regulation. It also outlines my expectations on broader improvements for CAV's performance.
As Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation, I am responsible for administering the Australian Consumer Law and Fair Trading Act 2012 and related consumer protection legislation that affect businesses and the broader Victorian community. This SOE should be read within the context of the objectives, obligations and functions set out in these Acts.
This SOE outlines key governance and performance objectives and targets aimed at improving the administration and enforcement of regulation and thus reducing its cost impact on business and the community. It replaces the SOE that was in place for 2016-17.
Improvements and targets
Based on consultation with CAV, I have identified some key areas of governance and operational performance where there are opportunities for CAV to make improvements that would reduce cost impacts on business.
I expect CAV to identify activities it will undertake to achieve the following performance improvements and targets:
- Make it easier for licensees and registrants to submit required data online, check on their application status and remain compliant with their obligations.
- Expand use of the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority's Electronic Transactions by property managers to make it easier to complete forms.
- Reduce red tape and duplicated reporting requirements for a range of not-for-profit incorporated associations and registered fundraisers.
- Improve CAV compliance operations to concentrate on areas of greatest risk to the achievement of regulatory outcomes.
Compliance related assistance and advice
- Increase awareness and understanding amongst estate agents of their obligations under the legislation concerning underquoting.
- Make online advice on regulatory requirements accessible to all regulated parties, including businesses, advocates, landlords, tenants and consumers.
In developing actions to achieve these improvements and targets, CAV is expected to consult with the Red Tape Commissioner, business and the broader community as appropriate.
Reporting on your progress to achieve these SOE performance targets should be undertaken in the context of annual financial reporting to avoid dual reporting streams. As part of annual reporting, regulators are expected to report on:
- current baseline levels for performance targets set in this SOE; and
- activities to be undertaken to reach the performance targets and improvements set out in this SOE.
I expect that these SOE performance targets will be incorporated into CAV's business planning, and this SOE should be published on CAV's website upon receipt.
I also expect that within one month of receipt of this letter, CAV will respond to this SOE, outlining how it intends to achieve the performance improvements and targets set in this SOE. This response should include details of the specific activities that will be undertaken by CAV.
I look forward to seeing CAV continuously working towards achieving best practice in the administration and enforcement of regulation.
Marlene Kairouz MP
Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation