Hon Mark McGowan BA LLB MLA

Hon Mark McGowan BA LLB MLA

Premier; Treasurer; Minister for Public Sector Management; Federal-State Relations

    Changes to payout provisions for senior bureaucrats

    21/09/2017 6:00 AM
    • New approach to reduce large compensation payments to Western Australia's most senior bureaucrats
    • The changes to the Senior Executive Service is another layer to the McGowan Government's public sector reforms
    • 'Right of return' provisions to expire following legislative change 

    The McGowan Government has moved to reduce large compensation payouts for senior bureaucrats when a contract is brought to an early end.


    In line with the Government's position, the Public Sector Commissioner has decided to apply a new approach when determining compensation payments.


    Currently senior members of the public service may seek a compensation payment of up to 12 months' remuneration, which includes salary, motor vehicle allowances and superannuation. 


    Under the new policy, in operation from September 1, 2017, compensation payments will be applied on the basis of four months' remuneration for each full year of the contract remaining, up to a maximum of 12 months.


    Further legislative changes will also limit the maximum compensation payment, when officers' contracts are brought to an early end, to 12 months' salary, rather than remuneration.


    If this approach was applied to Senior Executive Service officers since March 2017, the total compensation costs would have been reduced by about 41 per cent.


    As part of the Government's workforce reform, legislation will be introduced to also remove the existing 'right of return' provision available to Senior Executive Service officers appointed under the Public Sector Management Act 1994 and health executives appointed under the Health Services Act 2016.


    Following the enactment of the legislation, a six-month transition period will be in place, enabling officers to exercise their right to return to a permanent tenure, if they wish to do so.


    This change will allow for better workforce planning and a more efficient public sector.


    Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:


    "Large, excessive payouts are something I want my Government and future governments to avoid when possible.


    "These measures create a reasonable level of fairness and will help limit payouts in the future.


    "We're getting on with the job and implementing real change across the public service.


    "Our reforms will also ensure the public sector becomes more efficient and delivers better services to the Western Australian community.


    "A number of people leave the public service for various reasons and while there is an initial cost which the State Government is trying to reduce, there is also long-term savings."


    Premier's office - 6552 5000