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Policy Officer

Australian Department of the Environment - Canberra, ACT

Government, Defence & Emergency
Source: uWorkin

Source: uWorkin


Full Job Description
APS 4 - $67,190 - $73,148 per annum plus superannuation
Biosecurity Strategy & Reform Office Division
Canberra, ACT

Who we are
The Biosecurity Strategy and Reform Office supports the biosecurity system through providing strategic leadership and coordination to enable continuous improvement. The office provides quality, evidence-based policy advice to the department executive, minister, and government on solutions to protect our natural resources, unique environment and way of life in the face of increasing biosecurity risk, while facilitating a smarter digital, seamless and secure system that supports a stronger Australian economy. Reporting directly to the Deputy Secretary, Biosecurity and Compliance Group, the office has a diverse range of functions: - develop, implement and manage policy, programs and initiatives relating to preparedness and response to national biosecurity and agriculture incidents, and in relation to established pest animals and weeds - lead strategy and reform activities both to transform our business model for the future, and enhance our national biosecurity system with state and territory governments - grow enduring partnerships and relationships with key government agencies, state and territory governments and industry bodies - facilitate preparedness exercising and the management of deployment arrangements for staff and jurisdictions to assist with responding to and recovering from biosecurity and agricultural emergency incidents - implementing elements of the Intergovernmental Agreement on Biosecurity (IGAB) and conducts consultation and engagement activities to support the department’s biosecurity objectives.

The National Response Policy team manages the arrangements and policies implemented to respond to incidents of exotic plant and animal pests and diseases, in partnership with governments and industry, to ensure effective and timely management of national biosecurity responses. Through this advice we facilitate rapid, defensible and consistent decision making in emergency response situations. The NMG Secretariat is a primary contact point within the department for suspect biosecurity incidents and responsible for critical communication in the event of a response with NMG members (including the Chair). This team frequently deals with emerging and urgent situations, for example the Avian Influenza outbreak in Victoria. The team has a significant workload with 15 current response programs; progressing significant revisions to the National Environmental Biosecurity Response Agreement (NEBRA); work to finalise and gain industry and government to sign off the draft Aquatic deed; policy lead for the National Red Imported Fire Ant Eradication Program - South East Queensland; establishment (and amendment) of biosecurity response levies; input into the levies modernisation work; and financial reporting and management of administered funds. Team members may also be redeployed to assist with other elements of responses, including supporting incident management teams.

The Job
This position is responsible for a number of key functions that support the National Response Policy team and departmental executive. The National Management Group Secretariat services is responsible for:
  • arranging in-session meetings of the NMG
  • distributing papers
  • hosting teleconference meeting
  • managing the NMG inbox (a primary contact point for biosecurity incidents) and correspondence
  • coordinating out-of-session papers and responses
  • finalising and recording outcomes of meetings
  • maintaining current contact lists
  • developing briefings and submissions including, but not limited to, Question Time Briefs, Questions on Notice, ministerial briefing, media releases and talking points, senate estimates briefings, annual report, correspondence, and grant reporting
  • developing and maintaining productive relationships with stakeholders including both industry and government bodies to achieve positive outcomes in national responses.
  • financial management and reporting for National Partnership Agreements and the Special Purpose Payment 188 budget.
Skills and Capabilities

We are seeking applicants with some or all of the following:
  • ability to effectively prioritise and manage competing tasks to meet deadlines within a dynamic, fast-paced environment while maintaining positive working relationships with colleagues
  • demonstrated ability to work both independently and as part of a team to deliver a diverse range of tasks
  • good written and oral communication skills including the ability to present complex information to a variety of audiences
  • ability to provide administrative support and secretariat duties
  • ability to contribute positively to strategic planning and decision making within the section.
What we are looking for
Knowledge and experience
  • Experience in developing and maintaining stakeholder relationships to achieve positive outcomes.
  • Experience in policy development, program implementation and Cabinet and high-level committee processes would be an advantage.
  • Experience in working under pressure and ability to work to critical deadlines, take initiative and exercise sound judgment.
  • Experience and knowledge of Australia’s biosecurity system
  • A knowledge of, or experience in financial areas such as tax, levy administration or cost-recovery arrangements.
  • National level emergency management experience and an understanding of Australia’s, national contemporary emergency management principles and arrangements would be looked upon favourably but is not essential.
Security Clearance - This position requires a Baseline Vetting security clearance. You will be required to obtain and maintain a clearance at this level.

For additional information, please read the Job Description below.

Canberra, ACT

Government, Defence & Emergency


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