The Commission's delegation policy

6 Jan 2011



Health Quality and Safety Commission


Corporate Policy Manual


Doc No.


Policy for the Delegations of Authority to

Issue Date

June 2011

the Chief Executive 

Review Date

June 2012


Written By

General Manager






Minister of Health


1          Introduction


1.1       The Health Quality and Safety Commission (the Commission) is a Crown entity established on 9 November 2010 by the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act 2000 (the NZPHD Act). The Commission is a Crown agent listed in Part 1 of Schedule 1 of the Crown Entities Act 2004 (the CE Act) and is required to give effect to government policy when directed by the responsible Minister.  


1.2       Section 24 of Schedule 6 of the NZPHD Act requires the Commission’s Board (the          Board) to:


a)         formulate a policy for the exercise of its powers of delegation;

b)         keep the policy under review, and amend or replace the policy as it considers appropriate;

c)         make the policy formulated, and any amendments to or replacements of the           policy, publicly available.


1.3       In accordance with section 24 of Schedule 6 of the NZPHD Act, this delegation policy and any subsequent amendment, or replacement will not come into force unless it has been approved by the Minister of Health.


2          Delegation Purpose


2.1       It is the Board’s policy that Delegations are implemented and used in a way that ensures:

a)         the Commission is able to be managed effectively and efficiently;

b)         the Board is able to meet its statutory and other obligations, including public   accountability;

c)         the Commission operates in accordance with its current Statement of Intent.


3          General Delegation


3.1       The Board will delegate to the Chief Executive of the Commission (the Chief Executive) all statutory functions and powers necessary to:

a)        achieve the Commission’s statutory objectives; and

b)                  implement the Commission’s Statement of Intent.


3.2       This delegation policy complies with section 24 of Schedule 6 of the NZPHD Act and is made by resolution of the Commission’s Board.  The policy is effected through written notice to the Chief Executive in accordance with section 73 of the CE Act (attached as Appendix A to this policy is the Instrument of Delegation template) .  The delegation limitations are specified below.


4          Delegation Limitations




4.1       The Chief Executive must act in good faith, and in a manner that maintains the reputation of the Commission.


4.2       The Chief Executive must ensure actions and approvals are consistent with all applicable statutes, regulations and Ministerial directions, are prudent and meet expectations of public service ethics and the State Sector Code of Conduct.


4.3       In accordance with clause 74(1)(b)(ii) of the CE Act the Chief Executive may, via the development of a further internal sub-delegation policy, sub-delegate his or her delegated statutory functions to the Commission’s fixed term or permanent employees.  


4.4       Any sub-delegation policy must be approved in writing by the Board and not be in conflict with any of the policies within this delegation policy.  Any delegation to staff members is subject to those staff members agreeing to comply with any specified delegation limitations.


4.5       The Chief Executive may not delegate any of his or her delegated statutory powers or financial authority to temporary, casual or contracted staff.


Financial, Operational Management


4.6       The Chief Executive must ensure that the Commission acts in a financially responsible manner, in a way that prudently manages the Commission's assets and liabilities, and in a way that endeavours to ensure the Commission's long-term financial viability and that the Commission acts as a successful going concern (section 51 of the CE Act). 


4.7       In addition, the Chief Executive must:


a)                  operate within Board determined parameters for financial risk;

b)                  use the Commissions funds, and enter into contracts, and accept other liabilities solely for the purpose of furthering Board-approved purposes and priorities as defined in the Statement of Intent;

c)                  with Board approval, only expend more funds than have been received in the financial year if offset by approved withdrawals from reserves

d)                 seek and receive Board approval for overseas travel (except to Australia) for all Commission staff (including the Chief Executive).


4.8       The Chief Executive can approve up to $200,000 (GST excl) for any one internal operational expense[1], and up to $500,000 (GST excl) for individual external service or programme expenditure[2].  These expenditure approvals must be in line with the Board’s overall approved budget for that expense.


4.9       Chief Executive expenses shall require the approval of the Chair of the Board and be countersigned by the Commission’s Chief Financial Officer  or General Manager.


4.10     The expenses of the Chair of the Board shall require the approval of the Deputy Chair and be countersigned by the Chief Executive.


4.11     The expenses of all other Board members shall require the approval of the Chair of the Board and be countersigned by the Chief Executive.


4.12          At least two authorised people must be involved as signatories for electronic and or cheque payments.  Authorised signatories will include the Board Chair, Deputy Chair, one other Board member, the Chief Executive, General Manager and Chief Financial Officer[3]. 


4.13     The same person shall not perform more than two of the following functions:


a)         Raise a purchase order

b)         Receive the goods

c)         Authorise the invoice for payment.


Employment Conditions and Remuneration


4.14     The Chief Executive must ensure that in the employment, management, determination of remuneration, benefits and performance evaluation of the Commission’s employees and contractors, he or she provides a workplace environment that meets the Commission’s obligations to be a good employer (under section 118 of the CE Act) and the State Sector Code of Conduct. Commitments made shall not put at risk the financial sustainability of the Commission. 


4.15     In addition, the Chief Executive must:


a)                  consult with the Board before making material changes to the organisational structure of the organisation and before making appointments to the Management Team

b)                  establish compensation within a reasonable range of the professional market range for the skill employed, and within State Services Commission guidelines

c)                  ensure that any obligations are reasonably able to be met by the Commission

d)                 not change his/her salary and/or benefits (the terms and conditions of employment of the Chief Executive are determined by agreement between the Board and the chief executive, but the Board must not finalise those terms and conditions, or agree to any amendments to any or all of those terms and conditions once they have been finalised, without first obtaining the consent of the State Services Commissioner (section 29 (2) of Schedule 6 of the NZPHD Act).



Protection of Assets


4.16     The Chief Executive must take all prudent and reasonable actions to ensure the Commission’s assets, physical and intellectual, are protected against all reasonable foreseeable damaging circumstances. 


4.17     In addition, the Chief Executive must:


a)                  process the receipt and disbursement of funds within the controls acceptable to the duly appointed auditor

b)                  ensure the assets are insured at a prudent level for risk management

c)                  ensure protections are in place for the Commission, its Board members and employees against claims of liability

d)                 purchase goods and services with protection against conflicts of interest, and ensure a related parties policy is in place

e)                  protect intellectual property, information, and files from loss, improper use, improper purposes and significant damage

f)                   ensure appropriate management of risk factors that could conceivably disrupt the Commission’s effective and efficient operation and ensure that there are plans and systems that, in the event of disruption, will allow continuity of business.


Political Relationships, Communication and Support to the Board


4.18     The Chief Executive must implement a ‘no surprises’ policy, and must inform the Board about issues and concerns essential to meeting its duty of care, the carrying out of its responsibilities and the meeting of its accountabilities to the Minister of Health and key stakeholders. 


4.19     In addition, the Chief Executive must:


a)      provide support and information in a timely, accurate and understandable manner addressing the various issues to be monitored by the Board

b)      ensure effective and timely communication with the Board on significant issues and discussions that may impact the Commission, including media comments

c)      ensure that all external communications, including to the media, reflect an accurate interpretation of Board and organisational policy and/or current board decisions and concerns

d)     ensure that in exercising responsibility for the relationship with the Minister of Health, other Ministers, Associate Ministers, other Members of Parliament and relevant Government agencies regarding operational matters, he or she reflects an accurate interpretation of Board and organisational policy and/or current Board decisions and concerns.




Emergency Chief Executive Succession


4.20     The Chief Executive must ensure that there is in place an emergency management regime that can operate in the event of unexpected absence or loss of the Chief Executive’s services




Legal Agreements


4.21     The Chief Executive must not undertake, approve, execute or in any way support any agreement that is directly or indirectly in contravention of any of the limitations on his or her delegations. 


4.22     In addition, the Chief Executive must:


a)                  ensure that deeds of agreement[4] are signed by both him or her self and the Chair of the Board or, if the Chair is unavailable, the Deputy Chair of the Board following discussion with the Chair

b)                  only sign a deed where, in his or her judgement (and the judgement of the Board member also signing) the deed:

i)              is not legally, politically, medically, publicly or for any other reason contentious

ii)            has no significant financial risks

c)                  only enter into agreements that are in accordance with provisions in the relevant legislation, including the CE Act, the NZPHD Act and the Public Finance Act 1989.




[1]Operational Expenses are defined as expenditure on activities associated with the internal day to day operations or overhead expenses of the Commission 

[2]Service or Programme expenditure is defined as expenditure associated with external facing activities that are not seen as internal operating costs associated with the internal running of the Commissions core functions.

[3] When either the General Manager or Chief Financial Officer is a signatory, it must be jointly with the Chief Executive, Board Chair and/or other Board signatory.

[4] Deeds of Agreement are not general contracts for services, but rather deeds which pass an interest, right or property, for example deeds relating to the transfer of land, or settlement of a matter.

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Last updated 20/01/2022