The Auditor-General has announced it is monitoring problems
with the Novopay system; however, it is not investigating the
Ministry of Education's payroll system at this stage.
The system, which handles the pay of school staff, has been
plagued with errors since it was introduced in August last
year, with staff not getting paid the correct amount or not
being paid at all.
Auditor-General Lyn Provost said the office would consider
investigating the issue should the ministry fail to fix the
"Our current priorities around Novopay are completing annual
audit work to ensure that schools are able to sign off their
payroll reports and their annual financial statements," Mrs
Provost said in a statement.
"We appreciate that schools may be concerned at the potential
for increased audit costs as a result of the Novopay
problems. We are working with the Ministry to minimise the
workload for schools on their 2012 financial statements, as
well as minimising any additional work that auditors have to
carry out," Mrs Provost said.
"The Ministry announced last year that it would commission an
independent review and last week said that its review is to
be brought forward. Therefore, I have decided that it would
be premature for this office to begin an inquiry at the
moment. The agencies that are responsible for understanding
and fixing the problems should be given a reasonable
opportunity to do so.
"I fully appreciate that this is a difficult and stressful
time for all involved, and I will be keeping a close eye on
developments. If the steps that the Ministry takes do not
adequately address the issues, I will reconsider whether
there is a role for my office."
Prime Minister John Key announced on Tuesday that Economic
Development Minister Steven Joyce would take over the
handling of the Novopay system from associate education
minister Craig Foss.