ACT cops get federal tick of approval
Photo: Jeffrey Chan
The Australian Federal Police's law enforcement in the ACT has been given a tick by the Auditor-General.
The Australian National Audit Office says in a report released on Tuesday the AFP is consistently meeting most of its performance targets for Canberra residents.
The report identifies two areas for improvement – handling complaints and calculating policing expenses which resulted in an increase of more than $1 million.
The community policing arm known as ACT Policing has around 930 staff and costs the ACT Government $146 million a year to operate.
The audit assessed that the AFP was effectively managing the delivering of policing services to the ACT.
"The AFP is delivering the level and type of community policing services agreed with the ACT Government and is consistently meeting the majority of its performance targets," the report says.
"The purchaser-provider relationship between ACT Policing and the ACT Government is mature and operating well."
The audit office pointed out that in 2011-12 two KPIs relating to the number of complaints made against police were removed from the contract due to a misunderstanding.
"The ACT Ombudsman considers that a measure relating to complaints against police is an important customer service indicator," the report says.
"It would be prudent for ACT Policing to work with ACT Directorate of Justice and Community Safety and the ACT Ombudsman to develop an appropriate method for reporting performance in this important area."
The AFP responded that it currently provides detailed information on all complaints against police to the ACT Police Minister each quarter.
"The AFP will liaise with JACS and the ACT Ombudsman to look at how this reporting could be supplemented to address any concerns either party has with the current arrangements," the AFP said.
The report says there is no agreement between the AFP and the ACT Government on the methodology to determine the expense of the service.
"Since 2006-07, ACT Policing has been using a revised methodology that results in higher enabling services cost estimates, leading to a difference of around $1.4 million annually more than the previous cost base," it says.
The AFP says it will seek agreement with the ACT Government on a revised cost base for the law enforcement services.
In 1979 the then ACT Police was amalgamated with the Commonwealth Police and the Federal Bureau of Narcotics to form the AFP.