Changes to the department during 2020–21
On 1 July 2020, following machinery of government (MoG) changes, Bushfire Recovery Victoria transferred from DPC to the Department of Justice and Community Safety. Bushfire Recovery Victoria was established in January 2020 at DPC to help regions rebuild and recover after the 2019–20 Eastern Victorian bushfires.
Also on 1 July the Service Systems Reform branch transferred from DPC to the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions. Service Systems Reform oversees a program of WoVG policy development and reforms that aim to improve social and economic outcomes for Victorians.
On 1 August 2020 Cenitex was transferred from the Department of Treasury and Finance to DPC, to align with the Digital Victoria group. Cenitex provides reliable, robust and contemporary shared ICT services and technology to its government department and agency customers.
Further MoG changes, effective from 1 December 2020, saw the Jobs and Skills Exchange, a job-matching platform to support workforce mobility across the Victorian public service (VPS), transferred from DPC to a DPC portfolio entity — the Victorian Public Sector Commission.
On 1 February 2021 DPC’s Fairer Victoria group and associated portfolio entities (Respect Victoria, Queen Victoria Women’s Centre Trust, Victorian Multicultural Commission, LanguageLoop, the Shrine of Remembrance Trustees and Victorian Veterans Council) transferred to the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing.
Fairer Victoria supported the ministerial portfolios of equality, multicultural affairs, prevention of family violence, veterans, women and youth.
DPC consists of seven groups:
- Legal, Legislation and Governance
- Digital Victoria
- Cabinet, Communications and Corporate
- Social Policy and Intergovernmental Relations
- Economic Policy and State Productivity
- First Peoples–State Relations
- Industrial Relations Victoria.
Legal, Legislation and Governance
The Legal, Legislation and Governance group delivers public sector legal, legislation and governance expertise and combines the Office of the General Counsel (OGC) and the Governance Branch.
OGC provides legal and policy advice, including in the areas of administrative, constitutional and corporate law. OGC’s policy focus is on issues in the Premier’s and the Minister for Government Services’ portfolios, principally in relation to Victoria’s public sector, electoral system and subordinate legislation. OGC also supports DPC in developing legislative and regulatory proposals and manages the department’s freedom of information functions.
The Governance Branch unifies DPC’s efforts to promote good governance and public administration, high-quality decision and policymaking, government integrity and accountability, and trust in public institutions.
The Digital Victoria group was established in April 2021 to drive digital transformation across the Victorian Government. Digital Victoria connects Victoria’s public digital and information technology infrastructure, making it easier for business, communities and citizens to connect with government and to foster Victoria’s digital economy. Digital Victoria will define Victoria’s digital strategy for 2021–2026, champion the use of data and new technologies and guide and support the public service to create efficiencies and collaborate to better serve Victorians. The branches that make up the group are: Digital Strategy and Transformation; Digital Design and Innovation; Victorian Centre for Data Insights; and Cyber Security.
Cabinet, Communications and Corporate
The Cabinet, Communications and Corporate (CCC) group provides services and VPS-wide advice to support robust public administration and promote DPC’s role as the First Minister’s department. CCC provides timely and practical guidance on the operation of Cabinet, Cabinet Committees and the Executive Council. The group leads work to support DPC to meet integrity, financial accountability and institutional governance obligations to parliament and ministers and provides specialist communication, event, behavioural insights and protocol advice across government. CCC also provides the operational backbone to DPC and its entities through finance; operations; people and culture; and procurement services and assistance.
Social Policy and Intergovernmental Relations
The Social Policy and Intergovernmental Relations group brings together social policy expertise with coordination of the State’s intergovernmental relations. The group provides policy advice on the following portfolios: health; mental health; education; justice; community security and emergency management; and families, fairness and housing. The group also leads oversight and coordination of intergovernmental advice, COVID-19 pandemic response efforts and the government’s response to the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System. It also supports the Office of the Family Violence Reform Implementation Monitor.
Economic Policy and State Productivity
The Economic Policy and State Productivity group leads economic policy advice to the Premier and Cabinet. The group works in collaboration with relevant departments and agencies to ensure a coordinated WoVG approach to policy and projects in the areas of economic development and recovery; fiscal strategy; regional and suburban development; local government outcomes; regulatory reform; consumer affairs; gambling; racing; major events; workplace safety; international engagement; infrastructure; planning; precincts; transport; energy; agriculture; resources; and the environment.
First Peoples–State Relations
The First Peoples–State Relations group was established in April 2021 and is responsible for an extensive program of nation-leading work in the areas of cultural rights, self-determination, treaty and truth with First Peoples. The group recognises Victoria’s First Peoples as the self-determining drivers of Aboriginal affairs in Victoria and is committed to building ongoing, just and respectful relationships between self-determining First Peoples and the State. The group performs statutory functions under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006 and works with First Peoples on cultural heritage management and protection in ways which recognise the leading role of strong and engaged Traditional Owners.
Industrial Relations Victoria
The Industrial Relations Victoria (IRV) group provides strategic industrial relations legislative, policy and technical advice to government and departments. IRV engages with Victorian employers, employees and their representatives to support a positive industrial relations environment, and to advocate for fair and productive workplaces, secure work and gender pay equity. IRV also oversees industrial relations matters and enterprise bargaining policy and processes across the Victorian public sector. IRV consists of three branches: Private Sector Industrial Relations, Public Sector Industrial Relations, Wage Inspectorate Victoria and the Office of the Deputy Secretary.
DPC’s senior executives
Jeremi Moule was appointed as the Secretary of DPC in October 2020. Prior to this role, he was DPC’s Deputy Secretary of Governance Policy and Coordination, a position he held since August 2018.
Jeremi has held various executive positions in the Victorian and South Australian public services over a 17-year period. He started his career as a journalist and was the CEO of a registered training organisation. Jeremi lives in Bendigo and has worked extensively in regional Victoria.
He holds a journalism degree from the University of South Australia and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Deputy Secretary, Cabinet, Communications and Corporate & A/Chief Executive Officer, Digital Victoria
Vivien Allimonos was appointed to the role of Deputy Secretary of Governance and Policy Coordination (now Cabinet, Communications and Corporate) in March 2021. Vivien also acted as the Chief Executive Officer of Digital Victoria until September 2021. Prior to DPC, Vivien was the Chief Communications Officer at the Department of Education and Training. Vivien has more than 20 years’ experience in public administration, with a focus on international affairs, trade and communications. She has held various executive positions in the Victorian and Australian public services as well as the US State Department. She holds an honours degree in commerce/arts from the University of Melbourne and was listed in IPAA Victoria’s Top 50 Public Sector Women 2020.
Deputy Secretary, Economic Policy and State Productivity
Tim Ada began in the role of Deputy Secretary of Economic Policy and State Productivity in April 2019. Previously, Tim was Deputy Secretary of the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, where he was responsible for the strategic development of key industry sectors including manufacturing, life sciences, international education, and the delivery of telecommunications and employment programs.
Tim has a Master of Agriculture Sciences from the University of Melbourne. He grew up in rural Victoria.
Chris Miller is acting in the role of Deputy Secretary of Economic Policy and State Productivity for the period from April to October 2021. Chris substantively serves as Executive Director of the Infrastructure, Planning and Major Projects Branch at DPC.
Deputy Secretary, First Peoples–State Relations
Elly Patira was appointed as the Acting Deputy Secretary of First Peoples–State Relations in April 2021. Elly is a lawyer and policy adviser with broad experience across constitutional, Indigenous and minority rights law and policy, both domestically and internationally. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and JD (Juris Doctor) from the University of Melbourne and a Master of International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford. Elly has held various executive positions in the Aboriginal Affairs portfolio at DPC. Elly has previously worked as an academic, in the corporate sector, for Aboriginal organisations and as an adviser during the Fijian constitution-making process.
As Acting Deputy Secretary, Elly is responsible for an extensive program of priority work with First Peoples in the areas of treaty, truth and transitional justice, self-determination and cultural rights and protection.
Deputy Secretary, Industrial Relations Victoria
Matt O’Connor was appointed as the Deputy Secretary of Industrial Relations Victoria in April 2015.
Matt has worked in the Victorian Government since 2003. He has overseen the development of industrial relations legislative and policy reforms including wage theft, labour hire, long service leave and public sector employment protections. Matt has steered the government’s public sector industrial relations strategy for several years and, more recently, played a pivotal role in the successful conclusion of the agreement covering the VPS. He has led the government’s participation in various legal proceedings in the Fair Work Commission including advocating for entitlements for frontline workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Matt provides strategic input on a range of WoVG industrial relations matters. He has also represented the Victorian Government in consultations with the Australian Government on federal industrial relations legislative proposals, including amendments to the Fair Work Act 2009.
Deputy Secretary/General Counsel, Legal, Legislation and Governance
Toby Hemming was appointed as General Counsel in May 2018.
Toby has significant experience in the Victorian public sector, having held senior positions in organisations including the County Court of Victoria, the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority and the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority.
Toby holds degrees in the areas of law, arts and corporate governance. He is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has completed Executive Fellows programs at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and the Australia and New Zealand School of Government.
Deputy Secretary, Social Policy and Interdepartmental Relations
Kate Houghton was appointed as Deputy Secretary of Social Policy in DPC in November 2018.
Kate has led many teams across a variety of portfolios within the VPS. Before joining DPC she was Deputy Secretary of Police and Crime Prevention at the then Department of Justice and Regulation. Kate spent many years working within the natural resources and environment portfolio. She led the Water and Catchments group as Deputy Secretary and the Environment Policy Division as Executive Director.
Kate has an honours degree in economics and a Master of Environment. She is also an Institute of Public Administration Australia Fellow.
Administrative offices are established and abolished through orders under section 11 of the Public Administration Act, and each is established in relation to a department.
DPC is responsible for the effective, efficient and economical management of the following administrative offices.
Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel
The Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel transforms policy into legislation and advises the government on its legislative program. The office is responsible for ensuring up-to-date public access to authoritative Victorian legislation. The Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel is also the Government Printer for Victoria, responsible for printing Victorian legislation.
Office of the Governor
The Office of the Governor supports the Governor of Victoria in carrying out all aspects of their official duties for the benefit of the Victorian community and maintains Government House and grounds as a unique heritage community asset. The Governor’s role includes constitutional and ceremonial duties, community and international engagement, as well as official municipal and regional visits.
Office of the Victorian Government Architect
The Office of the Victorian Government Architect (OVGA) provides leadership and independent advice to government about architecture and urban design. OVGA puts quality of design at the centre of all conversations about the shape, nature and function of our cities, buildings and landscapes. OVGA’s activities include reviewing significant state and local government projects as well as commercial projects with a significant impact on the public. OVGA also leads on significant good-design initiatives and provides input, advice and advocacy on policies and issues of relevance to the Victorian Government.
Public Record Office Victoria
The Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) maintains the archives of the State Government of Victoria, holding records dating from the mid-1830s to today. PROV manages these for use by the government and people of Victoria. PROV’s collection contains records of decisions, events, people and places that have shaped the history of Victoria. PROV sets mandatory recordkeeping standards for state and local government agencies and provides support and advice on recordkeeping to government.
Service Victoria is a WoVG service capability created to improve the way government transactions are delivered to Victorians. Service Victoria brings together key government digital transactions in one place and has played an important role in the Victorian Government’s COVID-19 response, developing the quick response (QR) code system check-in service and the Service Victoria mobile app. Service Victoria is responsible for implementing the Service Victoria Act 2018 and provides customer service and identity verification functions.
DPC supports the Premier and its ministers in their responsibilities for the Victorian Public Sector Commission and the following special bodies and public entities.
Special bodies are defined in section 6 of the Public Administration Act and are created under separate legislation:
- Electoral Boundaries Commission
- Victorian Electoral Commission
- Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal.
Public entities include statutory authorities, state-owned enterprises, state-owned corporations and formally constituted advisory boards that perform functions outside of the public service:
- Breakthrough Victoria Fund Pty Ltd
- Labour Hire Authority
- Portable Long Service Authority
- Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council.