Departmental consultation

Consultation with departments can take a number of forms. On occasion, it is sufficient to send copies of a draft paper to other departments for comment. In other cases, it is appropriate to discuss and try to get agreement with other departments on policy issues before finalising a draft paper for more formal consultation. A phone call can be used to establish whether a department wishes to comment.

Departments preparing papers must ensure that they consider the interests both of other departments and of other government agencies, including the Privacy Commissioner and Officers of Parliament (the Controller and Auditor-General, the Office of the Ombudsman, and the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment).

Departments being consulted must be given enough time to consider a draft paper, and should see the final version of the document before it is uploaded through CabNet to ensure that they are happy with the comments attributed to them.  Papers should indicate the departments consulted and, if appropriate outline their views and/or whether they agree with the proposals.

Every attempt must be made to present a proposal that is supported by all departments that were consulted. If consensus cannot be reached, the paper should include all views and, if necessary, options should be provided in the recommendations, clearly showing who supports which option.

Consultation with the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC), the State Services Commission (SSC), and the Treasury

Many Cabinet papers will need to be consulted with DPMC, SSC, and the Treasury. Drafters should, where they are uncertain, check with the relevant advisors in DPMC, the Treasury, and SSC on whether the paper that they are preparing needs consultation with those departments.

DPMC has responsibility for advising the Prime Minister on all policy proposals that are likely to have implications for the government as a whole. This is often because they are significant policy matters, issues needing high-level co-ordination, or issues of particular public interest.

SSC has responsibility for advising Ministers on whole of government perspectives, on proposals to establish, merge, or disestablish State sector agencies (other than State-owned enterprises), and on proposals with an impact on organisational structures, strategic alignment, and capability. SSC is also responsible for chief executive accountability or departmental performance specifications, and workforce or employment relations in the State sector.

The Treasury has responsibility for advising the Minister of Finance on all proposals with economic implications, financial or fiscal (expenditure or revenue) implications, implications for the Public Finance Act 1989, and regulatory implications (proposals for primary legislation or disallowable instruments submitted for approval to Cabinet).

The Treasury must be consulted on all papers with financial, fiscal, economic, or regulatory implications, or that contain recommendations on expenditure or revenue. The Treasury must be allowed a minimum two week period to comment (unless there are compelling and unavoidable reasons to be less), and the implications must be detailed in the Cabinet or Cabinet committee paper and, if appropriate, in an accompanying Regulatory Impact Statement.

Consultation on matters of general importance

Ministers also want assurance that the issues in papers have been assessed for their implications for matters of general importance to the government. These matters include legal obligations, human rights issues, regulatory impact and compliance cost implications, implications for key population groups, and the use, long-term lease, or disposal of Crown-owned land.

The following list indicates which departments drafters should consider consulting to ensure that their paper addresses those issues of general importance:

Consultation on the impact on population groups

There are papers on a wide range of policy issues where Ministers will want to know about the impact on particular population groups.  The list below indicates the departments that drafters should consider consulting in such cases:

Consultation on other cross-government issues

Some papers may also require consultation with departments that have responsibility for more specialised areas of activity with application across the government.  These issues include:

  • policy proposals that have a direct impact on offending and victimisation, that create or change criminal offences, infringements or penalties, or that impact on court-based procedures and workloads – the Ministry of Justice (MoJ);
  • proposals affecting central government decision making processes, Ministerial ethics, Ministerial portfolios, and constitutional issues – the Cabinet Office (in DPMC);
  • legislative and policy proposals that may affect the privacy of individuals, including information matching proposals – MoJ and the Office of the Privacy Commissioner;
  • proposals with implications for the record of government activity and the custody of government records – Archives New Zealand (in DIA);
  • proposals that have implications for the collection, analysis and release of statistical information from surveys or administrative databases, or that relate to monitoring and evaluation – Statistics New Zealand;
  • proposals that have regulatory implications for local government – DIA;
  • proposals that have implications for the community and voluntary sector – the Office for the Community and Voluntary Sector (in DIA).

 

Agency Portfolio Groups in CabNet

Each CabNet user agency has one or more associated Agency Portfolio Groups (APGs).

Staff that have been authorised to have a CabNet user account will be a member of one or more APG within their agency. Refer to the section on user management for more information on managing CabNet user accounts.

It is important that the correct APGs are nominated in CabNet as this will provide access to the members of the nominated APGs at the appropriate point in the consideration process.

Each APG includes the name of the agency and the name of the portfolio that the agency supports:

  • Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)
  • Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Canterbury Earthquake Recovery)
  • Crown Law Office (Attorney-General)
  • Department of Conservation (Conservation)
  • Department of Corrections (Corrections)
  • Department of Internal Affairs (Community and Voluntary Sector)
    Department of Internal Affairs (Ethnic Communities)
    Department of Internal Affairs (Internal Affairs)
    Department of Internal Affairs (Local Government)
    Department of Internal Affairs (Ministerial Services)
    Department of Internal Affairs (Racing)
  • Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Civil Defence)
    Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Deputy Prime Minister)
    Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (National Security and Intelligence)
    Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Prime Minister)
  • Education Review Office (Education)
  • Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (Energy and Resources)
  • Environmental Protection Authority (Environment)
  • Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB)
  • Housing New Zealand Corporation (HNZC)
  • Inland Revenue Department (Revenue)
  • Land Information New Zealand (Land Information)
  • Law Commission (Justice)
  • Ministry for Culture and Heritage (Arts, Culture and Heritage)
    Ministry for Culture and Heritage (Broadcasting)
    Ministry for Culture and Heritage (Sport and Recreation)
  • Ministry for Primary Industries (Food Safety)
    Ministry for Primary Industries (Primary Industries)
  • Ministry for the Environment (Climate Change Issues)
    Ministry for the Environment (Environment)
  • Ministry for Women (Women)
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (ACC)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Building and Housing)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Broadcasting)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Commerce and Consumer Affairs)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Communications)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Economic Development)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Energy and Resources)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (HNZC)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Immigration)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Science and Innovation)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Small Business)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Social Housing)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Tourism)
    Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (Workplace Relations and Safety)
  • Ministry of Defence (Defence)
  • Ministry of Education (Education)
    Ministry of Education (Novopay)
    Ministry of Education (Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment)
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Foreign Affairs)
    Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (Trade)
  • Ministry of Health (Health)
  • Ministry of Justice (Attorney-General)
    Ministry of Justice (Courts)
    Ministry of Justice (Justice)
    Ministry of Justice (Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations)
  • Ministry for Pacific Peoples (Pacific Peoples)
  • Ministry of Social Development (Disability Issues)
    Ministry of Social Development (Senior Citizens)
    Ministry of Social Development (Social Development)
    Ministry of Social Development (Social Housing)
    Ministry of Social Development (Youth)
  • Ministry of Transport (Transport)
  • New Zealand Customs Service (Customs)
  • New Zealand Defence Force (Defence)
    New Zealand Defence Force (Veterans' Affairs)
  • New Zealand Police  (Police)
  • New Zealand Qualifications Authority (Education)
    New Zealand Qualifications Authority (Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment)
  • New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZ Security Intelligence Service)
  • New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (Economic Development)
    New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (Trade)
  • Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives (Deputy Leader of the House)
    Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives (Leader of the House)
    Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives (Speaker of the House)
  • Office of the Controller and Auditor-General (Office of the Controller and Auditor-General)
  • Office of the Leader of the House (Leader of the House)
  • Parliamentary Counsel Office (Attorney-General)
  • Parliamentary Service (Speaker of the House)
  • Privacy Commissioner (Justice)
  • Reserve Bank of New Zealand (Finance)
  • Serious Fraud Office (Police)
  • Sport New Zealand (Sport and Recreation)
  • State Services Commission (State Services)
  • Statistics New Zealand (Statistics)
  • Te Puni Kokiri (Maori Development)
    Te Puni Kokiri (Whanau Ora)
  • Tertiary Education Commission (Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment)
  • The Treasury (Broadcasting)
    The Treasury (Earthquake Commission)
    The Treasury (Finance)
    The Treasury (Regulatory Reform)
    The Treasury (State Owned Enterprises)

 

Refer to the following pages for more information: