Issued: Tuesday, 13 October 2015
The NSW Government will transform NSW Trustee and Guardian (NSWTG) to secure its future and ensure vulnerable people get access to better service, Attorney General Gabrielle Upton today announced.
Ms Upton said the NSW Government will implement most of the recommendations of the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal's (IPART) report as part of a comprehensive transformation of NSWTG.
"The findings of the IPART report are unequivocal; if NSWTG is to survive it must change. If nothing is done, vulnerable people will continue to receive sub-standard service and NSWTG will operate at a loss of approximately $45 million over the next three years," Ms Upton said.
"The reform will help make NSWTG financially viable, reduce fees on average and make it easier for people to access services online, over the phone or in person at a NSWTG branch or Service NSW centre. Importantly, eligible pensioners will receive wills and powers of attorney for free."
NSWTG was created in 2009 with the merger of the Office of the Protective Commissioner and the Public Trustee of NSW. NSWTG helps vulnerable and disadvantaged people manage their financial affairs as well as provide alternative independent trustee and executor services.
In 2014, the NSW Government requested IPART review NSWTG's fee structure to ensure it was fair and transparent. IPART found there were major issues with NSWTG's financial sustainability and service quality. IPART recommendations included improving NSWTGs fee structure and continuing the Community Service Obligation funding for low income people.
Imelda Dodds, CEO of NSWTG, said "The transformation is a response to the needs of clients and will modernise the way in which we deliver services. Importantly, I want to assure people that they can be confident that NSWTG will keep their finances safe."
Graeme Innes, former Disability Discrimination Commissioner, said "This service is critical for vulnerable people with disabilities in NSW, and must remain sustainable. The proposed changes seek to achieve that, and also provide a smoother and more efficient service. This would be a good outcome for people with disabilities."
For more information about NSWTG visit www.tag.nsw.gov.au.
The IPART review is available on the IPART website.