1304.5 - Stats Talk WA, Jun 2009  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 31/07/2009   
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A View From The Top
From the Regional Director

There is nothing that focusses the mind more than the prospect of not having enough funding to do all the things that you would like to do. Over the last two years the ABS has had to do some serious re-evaluation of the programs that are most critical to best inform Government about the strategic policy challenges that lie ahead. In that re-evaluation process we have undergone a significant consultation process with key stakeholders at both Commonwealth and State level that has given us a far better appreciation of how our statistics are used.

Of course, if you ask enough stakeholders you will undoubtedly find that there is nothing the ABS does that is not valued by at least one of them. However, when there is insufficient funding to do everything, priorities must be established and there needs to be an acceptance that some valuable things cannot be continued.

The good news is that having gone through that consultation process, the Commonwealth Government has delivered a budget that increases the ABS funding base and delivers some new funds for new initiatives. This is a significant vote of confidence in the ABS and allows us to move forward with confidence. In particular, the voice of State Government has been heard with the ABS applying new funds to labour and related programs including the reintroduction of the labour force sample, and to the State and Territory Statistical Service.

We now move forward with renewed enthusiasm and a renewed understanding of those statistics and services critical to the WA State Government.

Michael Tindall, Government Statistician and ABS Regional Director, Western Australia

Michael Tindall,
Government Statistician and
ABS Regional Director,
Western Australia