The Coalition is set to take Government after defeating Labor in Saturday’s Federal election. According to ABC News, incoming Prime Minister Tony Abbott has confirmed that former Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey will be sworn in as Treasurer, and Warren Truss will be Minister for Infrastructure and Transport. It is expected that Malcolm Turnbull will receive the portfolio for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, a portfolio previously held by Anthony Albanese in the outgoing Labor Government. The first day of parliament must occur on or before 13 December, where the new Government will be able to begin implementing policies such as those laid out in its ICT policy.
Queensland’s Premier Campbell Newman today announced a new Director-General of the Department of Science, Information Technology, Innovation and the Arts (DSITIA), Susan Rickerby. Rickerby, who is currently Deputy Director-General at Queensland’s Department of Premier and Cabinet, will replace Andrew Garner at DSITIA. She will also be acting as whole-of-government CIO, reports IT news,while Queensland continues searching for a permanent GCIO following the removal of Peter Grant from the role in May.
The Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) has signed a $56 million, five year contract with Telstra for an upgrade of its existing telecommunications infrastructure. The contract includes the provision of new secure networks and phone systems. It comes after ACBPS signed a $32 million contract with Telstra in July as a lead agency, for the provision of secure internet gateway services to it and nine other agencies.
Optus has signed a $29 million deal with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) for the provision of telecommunications services. The outsourcing arrangement will combine contracts formerly signed with AAPT, Optus and Telstra into a single supplier arrangement. Last week, Optus was also announced as the winner of DAFF’s $10.7 million Internet Based Network Connections (IBNC) tranche of telecommunications work.
The Clean Energy Regulator is searching for a new Chief Information Officer. The statutory authority is responsible for administering legislation regarding the reduction of carbon emissions and the uptake of clean energy use. The CIO will be responsible for the development of an ICT vision and strategic plan, and “championing ICT investment priorities”. Despite the Coalition’s plan to abolish carbon pricing and to shut down three climate change related agencies (the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Climate Change Authority and the Climate Commission), environment spokesperson Greg Hunt announced in March that the Clean Energy Regulator would remain. Applications for the position close on 22 September.
Carolyn De Gois has been appointed as the new CIO at Public Transport Victoria (PTV), reports IT News. Her appointment follows the departure of Justin Bree who is taking up a position at the Country Fire Authority. De Gois previously headed the Victorian IT Strategy and Performance practice within professional services and audit company, KPMG. A complete review of PTV’s IT operations is set to occur after her commencement in the position.
The NSW Government has partnered with a number of web designers to extend the range of apps available for Government services. Last week they held an event, ‘apps4nsw unlocked’, for 40 designers to meet with selected agencies. The ‘apps4nsw’ initiative has already seen the development of the Rural Fire Service’s ‘Fires near me’ application and the release of real-time data for public transport apps. Further sessions are being planned for the remainder of this year.
The Queensland Government has announced a new “one stop shop” online portal to assist the public in matters regarding future health, financial and legal needs, reports PSNews. The ‘Planning for Life’ portal will provide information on planning for wills, powers of attorney and health care directories. The site will also facilitate contact with a public trustee with questions in regards to health and finance.
South Australia is planning to open Government data to the public through a series of initiatives. Data.sa.gov.au will house public data provided by agencies who have been told by Premier Jay Weatherill to ensure all data is publicly accessible. Weatherill hopes that the initiative “can help to fuel a boom in the local digital marketplace”. The Office of the Chief Information Officer will implement an ‘Open Data Action Plan’ to assist agencies in the transition.
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