Western Cape Provincial Treasury Budget Speech 2013
Leader of the Opposition
Members of the Provincial Parliament
Director-General and Heads of Departments
All the staff of the Provincial Treasury
Citizens of the Western Cape
I am honoured to stand before you today to table the 2013/14 budget for the Western Cape Provincial Treasury.
Mr Speaker, over the past year, this Department, led by Dr JC Stegmann and his expert team, have simultaneously simplified and strengthened the manner in which they provide support to the departments and municipalities within this province in pursuit of diligent financial management. This approach is encapsulated in the new vision that the staff of the Provincial Treasury have set for themselves: Effective governance that delivers a better life for our people.
While the processes may have altered, our goal remains the same: to play an integral role in the delivery of the 12th Strategic Objective of the Western Cape: Becoming the best-run regional government in the world. Through this goal, we aim to ensure that the money government spends delivers better results for all the people of this province.
In the year ahead, our contributions to the above goal come together in four initiatives:
- The Corporate Governance Review and Outlook (CGRO;
- The Municipal Governance Review and Outlook (MGRO);
- The Provincial; and
- Municipal Medium Term Revenue and Expenditure Assessments
The above initiatives will be driven through the four programmes under this department, each of which plays a vital role in ensuring the best possible financial governance of our departments and municipalities.
In total, the Provincial Treasury receives a budget of R446.205 million in 2013/14. This amount includes R252.598 million which is being housed within this Department for distribution to special projects undertaken across the government in support of its transversal goals. This money will be disbursed once the implementation plans for these projects have received final approval. In essence, Speaker, the budget for the programmatic work of the Provincial Treasury therefore escalates from R164.962 million in the adjusted appropriation last year, to R193.607 million, an increase of 17 per cent.
At the heart of the Provincial Treasury is a strong administrative team that provides leadership and guidance to the staff members of the Department so that they are enabled to best deliver upon their objectives.
In 2013/14, Programme 1: Administration, receives R45.476 million. The key outcomes of this allocation include the delivery of strategic support to my office and the Head of Department, operational and human resources support to all the staff members of the Department, including the optimisation of the working relationship with the Corporate Services Centre, and the provision of effective financial management in pursuit of a clean audit outcome.
In 2013/14, Programme 2: Sustainable Resource Management, continues to receive the largest allocation of the Department, an amount of R336.111 million, which includes R252.598 million for the transversal Special Projects being housed within the Provincial Treasury.
With its allocation, the Sustainable Resource Management team plays a crucial role in informing the budget of the provincial government through the thorough analysis of the most pressing socio-economic needs facing our citizens and the allocation of resources to best meet this need.
This team also monitors the implementation of the province’s budget, and the budgets of Western Cape municipalities and public entities, throughout the year, providing strategic guidance to these administrations to ensure that resources are utilised effectively.
In the year ahead, this programme will conduct research into the national transfer system with a specific focus on the funding formula that underpins provincial and municipal allocations.
This research will form the basis of our engagement with our national treasury colleagues with regard to the fiscal framework. We will also research new ways to raise own revenue and review our research regarding casino exclusivity. It is also within this programme that the MGRO process is undertaken in support of improved municipal financial governance.
Mr Speaker, in 2013/14, the Programme 3: Asset Management team will continue to play a vital role in enforcing the effective and efficient management of financial systems, supply chain and moveable asset management across the provincial and municipal spheres to ensure that loopholes for corrupt activity are closed.
With its allocation of R39.811 million in 2013/14, this programme will focus on enforcing compliance with the supply chain and asset management regulatory regime by ensuring data integrity and transparency in reporting and by training the staff who deal with government financial transactions.
Its major focus is on ensuring that our financial systems perform optimally.
This programme will also undertake research to encourage better procurement planning through strategic sourcing, and will increase opportunities for small and emerging businesses to receive government tenders by ensuring that they are duly registered on our supplier database.
In 2013/14, Programme 4: Financial Governance, receives an allocation of R24.807 million to develop stringent accounting and financial management control practices within provincial and local government. This will contribute toward higher levels of governance.
At a municipal level, in the coming year the primary tasks of this programme are to improve the application of GRAP accounting standards and financial reporting within municipalities so that by 2015, full compliance to minimum standards is achieved; and to strengthen the internal control environment within municipalities through the development, implementation and enforcement of a generic set of corporate governance norms and standards.
Within the Western Cape Government, this programme aims to improve the understanding of the provincial accounting reporting framework by departments and public entities; drive the functioning of provincial internal control units, and improve financial management through the development and rigorous monitoring of bespoke departmental Governance Action Plans.
Put together, Mr Speaker, the work of the above four programmes will contribute toward achieving the Provincial Treasury’s vision of effective governance that delivers a better life for all our people, and ultimately, toward the achievement of the Western Cape Government’s 12th Strategic Objective: Becoming the best-run regional government in the world.
Speaker, before I conclude, I would like to elaborate on the allocation of Special Projects housed within this department.
This year, for the first time, the Provincial Treasury held a series of mini-MTEC sessions aimed at obtaining input from relevant departments as to how they planned to support the Western Cape Government’s transversal policy priorities as outlined in its Strategic Objectives. These projects have been identified as such because they are complex, transcend departmental boundaries and if executed with maximum effectiveness, will have far-reaching impacts for the citizens of our province.
The envisaged allocations toward these Special Projects are as follows:
- Mr Speaker, in 2013/14, in support of our Broadband Initiative, and amount of R86.189 million has been allocated in support of the Provincial-Wide Area Network (PWAN). A further amount of R34.667 million has been allocated for E-Education hardware and R6.882 million has been set aside for Broadband Library services.
- In 2013/14, R6 million has been set aside to drive investment by the private sector in the province’s green economy, the completion of the Green Economy Framework and the 110% Green programme.
- An amount of just under R104 million has been earmarked for the development of systems and processes that will professionalise the public service in the Western Cape, strengthen accountability and the management of content, improve coordination and reduce instances of corruption. Under this allocation, funding has been earmarked for the roll out of biometric fingerprinting devices for those staff members designated to handle government’s money.
- Lastly, Mr Speaker, an amount of R15 million in 2013/14 and R75 million over the 3 year MTEF period, has been set aside to kick-start four regional socio-economic pilot projects in Witzenberg, George, Drakenstein and Nyanga to realise the unique development potential of these selected areas. It is envisaged that these projects will be along the lines of the VPUU Programme in Khayelitsha.
These allocations will be disbursed following the approval of implementation plans which are due to be received ahead of the adjustments budget period.
Speaker, I would like to issue my heartfelt appreciation to Dr JC Stegmann and his team for their expert guidance over the provincial budget process, the management of government resources in the Western Cape, and for the forward thinking manner in which he and his team are tackling this province’s biggest challenges.
We also know that we cannot meet our challenges without the dedication and joint effort of Cabinet, Chief Financial Officers, Accounting Officers and all staff members of the Western Cape Government. Through the guidance and leadership of this department, and through all of our efforts, we will make the lives of Western Cape residents Better, Together.
I hereby table the 2013/14 budget of the Provincial Treasury for the consideration of this house.
I thank you.