Indexed file lists
Senate continuing order
On 14 November 1994, the Senate agreed to a motion by Senator Harradine requiring all Australian Government departments and agencies to produce a list of files for tabling before the Parliament. The production of the list is intended to make the operations of government more transparent to the Australian public. The original Senate Order was amended in 1998 and now requires departments to also list these files on their internet websites.
File lists are provided in accordance with the Senate Continuing Order-Orders for documents. This order requires each department and agency to:
provide, on its Internet home page, access to an indexed list of the titles of all relevant files, including new parts of existing files, created from 1 January 1998 in the central office of that department or agency (departments and agencies may choose to maintain online an indexed list of all new files created from that date or to maintain online an indexed list of, as a minimum, the most recent year's file creations).The lists are tabled twice a year, once in the Spring sittings and once in the Autumn sittings. Spring sittings - files created in the preceding July to December. Autumn sitting - files created in the preceding January to June
The National Water Commission's indexed list of files
In accordance with the Order, the Commission's list of files does not include:
- files essentially related the internal administration of the commission (staff or personnel, accounts, training, or general administrative matters)
- case-related files (for example personal representation or dealing with the personal affairs of commission or agency client)
- file titles whose national security classification is Confidential, Secret or Top Secret or their equivalent.
The Commission's lists do not include files whose titles would disclose the deliberations of Cabinet.
In accordance with the Order, some information in file titles has been deleted, such as:
- commercially confidential information
- identifiably personal information
- any security classified information which is disclosed in or which could reasonably be established from a file title.
In response to the senate order requirement that the list be 'indexed', the files are arranged under the names of groups of the commission and then by file number.