The Australian Valuation Office will close its doors on 30 June 2014 after providing over 100 years of service to Australian government departments.
Earlier this year, the government announced that the agency had become unsustainable and was expected to incur losses of up to $4 million this financial year. Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer and MP, Steven Ciobo, said AVO revenue has been declining sharply due to technological changes in the valuation industry and government departments decreasing their use of the AVO’s services.
It is understood that big investments were needed in IT infrastructure for it to remain viable. There was also a reported 80% slump predicted in work from Human Services.
Minister Ciobo said there was no longer a compelling case for the Commonwealth providing its own valuation services due to the highly competitive market of private sector providers.
The Minister said he paid tribute to those who have worked in the AVO, as the organisation has a rich history and has assisted organisations over many years to meet policy outcomes and financial reporting requirements.
Jeff Lapidos, Australian Services Union (ASU) Tax Officers Branch Secretary, says the ASU will work with its members in the AVO and with the ATO to get employees redeployed wherever possible and to advise them of their rights under the ATO Enterprise Agreement and elsewhere.
The closure will affect workers in Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney as well as regional towns including, Young, Bowral, Wagga Wagga, Lismore, Mildura and Port Lincoln. The office’s remaining work is expected to be taken over by private sector valuers.
Applying for tenders
As a result of this shut down, there are many government departments that will be requiring valuation work to be completed.
The AVO has advised the Australian Property Institute (API) that there are two methods from which the AVO secured their valuation work, namely as a panel member or by tender.
For those government departments for which the AVO is a panel member, the AVO will simply step down from the panel. These departments may or may not seek to appoint another panel member.
For those government departments that the AVO had to tender for work through, these are done through a competitive tender basis – the Commonwealth Procurement Rule’s (CPR’s) apply, which can be found here.
Further information on a number of tenders that may be sought can be requested by email from Tracy Kriesel, Education Standards Manager for the API – firstname.lastname@example.org.