Legislative framework

The legislative framework we operate in influences our corporate governance

The most important pieces of legislation by which Defence Housing Australia (DHA) is governed are as follows:

Defence Housing Australia Act 1987

DHA formerly known as the Defence Housing Authority, was established as a statutory authority1 on 1 January 1988 under the Defence Housing Authority Act 1987 (Cth).

On 23 November 2006, in accordance with the Defence Housing Authority Amendment Act 2006 (Cth), the Authority was renamed Defence Housing Australia and our principal Act was renamed Defence Housing Australia Act 1987 (DHA Act).

The DHA Act sets out our functions, powers, corporate structure and delegations. In accordance with section 5 of the DHA Act, the main function of DHA is to provide adequate and suitable housing for, and housing related services to:

  • members of the Defence Force and their families
  • ·officers and employees of the Department of Defence and their families
  • persons contracted to provide goods or services to the Defence Force and their families

in order to meet the operational needs of the ADF and the requirements of the Department.

Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013

The Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act) and its associated instruments, policies and guidance set the standards of governance, performance and accountability for Commonwealth entities and companies. The PGPA Act also imposes specific duties on our Board members and officials relating to the use and management of resources.

In accordance with the PGPA Act, DHA is a corporate Commonwealth entity2. As a corporate Commonwealth entity, DHA must comply with the following PGPA Act associated instruments and policies:

DHA as a Government Business Enterprise

In accordance with section 5 of the PGPA Rule, DHA is one of nine Government Business Enterprises (GBEs)3. As a GBE, DHA is expected to comply with Resource Management Guide No. 126 Government Business Enterprises (GBEs) (RMG 126).

RMG 126 provides guidance in relation to board and corporate governance, planning and reporting, financial governance and other governance matters. A principal objective for each GBE is that it adds to shareholder value.

Other applicable legislation and processes 

DHA is the only GBE that employs staff under the Public Service Act 1999. As an Australian Government employer, we must adhere to the provisions and statutes of various Commonwealth employment related legislation including, but not limited to, the Fair Work Act 2009 and the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.

As a statutory agency, we must also operate in accordance with Commonwealth legislation including, but not limited to, the following Acts:

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1. A statutory authority is a generic term for an Australian Government body established through legislation for a public purpose.
2. A corporate Commonwealth entity is a body corporate, established by a law of the Commonwealth but legally separated from it. Corporate Commonwealth entities can act in their own right and exercise certain legal rights such as entering into contracts and owning property.
3. A Government Business Enterprise (GBE) is a commercially-focused government owned business that is established to fulfil a Commonwealth Government purpose.