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The National Museum of Australia Act 1980 (the Museum Act) defines the broad functions and activities of the Museum. This Act established the Museum as a Commonwealth statutory authority and, along with the National Museum of Australia Regulations 2000, defines the Museum’s role, functions and powers. (See Appendix 2: Functions and powers of the National Museum of Australia)

The primary piece of Commonwealth resource management legislation governing the Museum is the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (the PGPA Act). This Act establishes the guidelines of governance and accountability for public resources, with an emphasis on planning, performance and reporting. It requires the Museum’s Council, as the accountable authority of the Museum, to prepare and give an annual report on the Museum’s activities for the period to the Museum’s responsible minister, for presentation to the parliament. The Museum’s annual report must comply with the requirements of the Public Governance Performance and Accountability Rule 2014. The Public Service Act 1999 covers the powers of the Director of the Museum in relation to the management of human resources.

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