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KPMG Review of the Magistrates Court

KPMG Review of the Magistrates Court

In 2016 Attorney-General Dr Vanessa Goodwin commissioned a review of the Magistrates Court to identify opportunities to improve efficiency and overall performance.

KPMG was appointed to undertake the review and their resulting report contains several key recommendations to ensure more timely completion of matters within the Court, including:

  • Legislative changes to improve management of civil and criminal proceedings,
  • Streamlining administrative and electronic processes, and
  • Redefining the current organisational structure.

A new Magistrates Court Administrator has been appointed and will be supported by a fixed term General Manager to swiftly implement the required changes. In addition, Secretary of the Department of Justice Simon Overland is chairing a Steering Committee to progress the recommendations made within the review.

One of the first tasks will be to revise the current remand in custody procedures, including a focus on information sharing between the courts, the Tasmania Prison Service and Tasmania Police. This will address issues raised in both the review of the Magistrates Court as well as the recently released KPMG Sentence and Remand Order Processing Audit Report.

It is important to note that although the Government will be working to review and implement many of the report’s recommendations, in order to ensure all Tasmanians have appropriate access to justice we will not be pursuing the recommendation to consolidate the Burnie and Devonport courthouses.

The review of the Court was conducted in consultation with key stakeholders, including Magistrates Court staff, Community Corrections, the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute, Tasmanian Law Society and Tasmanian Bar Association.

Download the KPMG Review of the Magistrates Court Report (pdf, 1.1 MB)

KMPG Audit Report Sentence and Remand Order Processing

KMPG Audit Report Sentence and Remand Order Processing

In May 2016 KPMG was commissioned to undertake an audit of sentence and remand order processing following the identification of a number of occasions where prisoners had been released on the incorrect date.

The audit report produced by KPMG was released by the Government on 8 March 2017.

The objective of the audit was to understand the inadequacies in the existing system and improve compliance with the processes for obtaining, entering and validating sentence and remand orders, and calculating release dates.

The report includes a suite of recommendations for reforms to address the factors that contributed to the incorrect releases and to improve the accuracy and efficiency of the process for the future.

The Government’s response to the audit recommendations has also been released, outlining the actions that will be taken to prevent a recurrence of these issues. Work has already commenced to implement some of these responses.

Download the KPMG Sentence and Remand Order Processing Internal Audit Report (pdf, 1.7 MB)

Download the Government's response to the report (pdf, 317.1 KB)

Accommodation sharing – supporting Tasmania’s visitor economy

Visitor accommodation just got easier

The home sharing or accommodation sharing market is a key component of tourism in Australia.

That is why the Tasmanian Government is making it easier for Tasmanians to share their own homes—whether they’re taking off on a rare holiday and giving a visitor cheap rates in exchange for dogsitting or they’re regularly letting out spare rooms to folks coming down for festivals and events.

Visit Tasmanian Planning Reform for more information.

Tasmanian State Planning Provisions

State Planning Provisions of the Tasmanian Planning Scheme

The State Planning Provisions provide a consistent set of planning rules for all of Tasmania.

The rules include consistent and contemporary planning definitions, exemptions, use classes, and administrative provisions such as development application requirements.

The Provisions also include 23 generic zones - including residential, business, agriculture, utilities, environmental and recreational - which indicate appropriate land use and development.

In addition, there are a suite of 16 codes which provide clear pathways for dealing with land use issues which occur across Tasmania and may apply across a range of zones, covering matters such as natural hazards, local heritage values and electricity infrastructure.

Finally, the Planning Provisions include a template for each council’s Local Provisions Schedule. Councils choose provisions from the suite of planning rules to best express their community’s land use strategies and needs.

Read more on Tasmanian Planning Reform.

Changes to the Mental Health Act

Mental Health Act changes

A number of changes have been made to the Mental Health Act. These come into effect on 1 July 2017 and affect doctors, patients and others who deal with the Mental Health Tribunal.

This Act authorises people in Tasmania with a mental illness who lack decision-making capacity to receive the treatment they need for their health and safety, or for the health and safety of others.

Patients’ rights and protection have not been removed or reduced by these changes.

Some of the changes specific to patient care include:

  • Streamlining the processes for patient assessment, treatment and care.
  • Improving the way patients are provided with emergency ‘urgent circumstances’ treatments when needed; and streamlining the process for authorising these treatments.
  • Ensuring that eligible people (for example, victims of an offence or parents/ guardians of a child victim) are consulted about extending or varying the leave granted to certain patients.

Some of the changes specific to treatment orders include:

  • Extending the timeframes for the Tribunal’s review of treatment orders, from 30 to 60 days; and 90 to 180 days.
  • Allowing the Mental Health Tribunal to make treatment orders that span different settings; and in certain conditions, authorising patients to be re-admitted or detained in an approved hospital.

For more information

You can find further information about all the changes and how they may affect you at  the Mental Health Tribunal website.

Refer to the Mental Health Act in full at the Tasmanian Legislation website.