Terms of Reference for Interim Inspector-General of Water Compliance

The Interim Inspector-General will deliver the highest accountability for water use and will seek to restore confidence for all stakeholders in the integrity of the Murray–Darling Basin Plan.


The Interim Inspector-General of Water Compliance will:

  1. Provide independent oversight and monitor Commonwealth and Basin state compliance with and implementation of:
    1. the Water Act 2007 (Cth), the Basin Plan 2012 and other legislative instruments made under the Water Act;
    2. intergovernmental agreements and arrangements relating to the water resource management in the Murray-Darling Basin.
  2. Engage with the Australian community about the water resource management of the Murray-Darling Basin.
  3. Provide advice relating to any of the above functions to the Commonwealth Minister responsible for water from time to time, or as requested by the Minister. The Minister will make the advice public and provide it to the Murray-Darling Basin Ministerial Council.


The Interim Inspector-General will also:

  • establish processes for the receipt of allegations of non-compliance with the Water Act, the Basin Plan and water resource plans
  • provide information and assistance to people seeking to report alleged non-compliance to appropriate authorities, noting that Basin states and territory governments have primary responsibility for implementing and enforcing compliance in their areas
  • report to the Minister on the focus areas and work of the Inspector-General annually.

The Interim Inspector-General will not duplicate the roles of existing Commonwealth or state government agencies in addressing instances of non-compliance and/or illegal activity.

Until amendments to the Water Act are made, the MDBA will retain responsibility for compliance and enforcement with the Water Act, Basin Plan and Water Resource Plans.


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