The Agency is meeting its legislated objectives in two broad ways through the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 by:
- creating the Scheme, which is based on insurance principles; and
- increasing the capacity of the entire Australian community, including providers of mainstream health, education and social services, community organisations, businesses and employers, to play its part. The Agency’s functions include developing and improving the disability sector by encouraging innovation, research and contemporary best practice.
The NDIA is committed to delivery on both of these objectives.
The governance for the NDIA is set out in the NDIS Act. Key elements of the Agency’s governance are below:
- The Scheme is administered by the National Disability Insurance Scheme Launch Transition Agency (National Disability Insurance Agency or the Agency), which has been established under Commonwealth legislation, the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013 (NDIS Act).
- The Agency is an independent statutory agency whose role is to implement the NDIS. The NDIA holds all funds contributed by the Commonwealth, states and territories in a single pool, manages Scheme funds, administers access to the Scheme and approves the payment of individualised support packages.
- The Board of the Agency is responsible for ensuring that the Agency performs its functions in an appropriate, efficient and effective manner. The Board determines the objectives, strategies and policies to be followed by the Agency. The Board manages its costs and liabilities from year to year including through the development of a reserve and investment of funds. Board membership is determined by the responsible Commonwealth Minister in consultation with the states and territories.
- The Independent Advisory Council ( ) provides the Board with independent advice, on its own initiative or at the written request of the Board, which the Board must have regard to when performing its functions. The is composed of people with disability, service providers and carers, and brings the crucial perspectives of these stakeholders to the work of the NDIA and the design of the Scheme.
- Responsible Ministers: The Hon Christian Porter MP, Minister for Social Services, has ministerial responsibility for the Agency, including the exercise of specific powers under the NDIS Act. Minister Porter was appointed as Minister for Social Services on 21 September 2015, with responsibility for disability. The Hon Jane Prentice MP is the Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, appointed on 18 February 2016. Assistant Minister Prentice is responsible for assisting Minister Porter with the transition of the NDIS to full Scheme.
- The Council of Australian Governments ( ) Disability Reform Council ( ) is made up of Commonwealth, state and territory treasurers and ministers for disability, and is chaired by the Minister for Social Services. It is the decision-making body on Scheme policy issues. The oversees the implementation of the Scheme. It makes recommendations to on the transition to full Scheme.
Figure 6: NDIS Governance Framework
In March 2017, the Minister for Social Services, the Hon Christian Porter MP provided NDIA Chairman, Dr Helen Nugent AO, with a Statement of Strategic Guidance (the Statement) in accordance with section 125 of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013.
The Statement sets out the Council of Australian Governments Disability Reform Council’s expectations for the NDIA Board in delivering and implementing the NDIS.