What are the Board’s committees?

Under Sydney Water’s Constitution, Directors may delegate any of their powers to committees, which must consist of at least one Director.

In March 2012, the Board revised its committees’ structure to establish five regular committees:

  • Audit and Risk

  • Corporate Governance

  • Customer and Environment

  • Finance and Asset Management

  • People and Remuneration.

Each regular committee has a charter, approved by the Board. The charter describes the purpose, objectives and functions of each committee. Board charters are regularly reviewed. This was last done in February 2010.

Special purpose committees can be convened on an ad hoc basis. During this financial year, the Board established the Desalination Plant Committee with the special purpose of overseeing implementation of the NSW Government’s policy on refinancing Sydney Desalination Plant Pty Limited (SDP), the company which owns the desalination plant at Kurnell. The Desalination Plant Committee ceased when the SDP Refinancing Project finished, on 1 June 2012.

Committee functions

Individual charters set out the functions of each Board committee as follows:

The Audit and Risk Committee:
  • monitors reports from the internal and external auditors and management’s responses to those reports

  • evaluates the performance of internal and external auditors

  • appraises programs and plans developed by internal and external auditors and monitors progress against these programs and plans

  • monitors the corporate risk management strategies, framework and processes to identify and manage current and emerging risks

  • monitors the Corporate Compliance Program

  • monitors the financial reporting of Sydney Water (and its subsidiaries) to ensure accuracy and integrity in these reports


  • monitors systems and processes designed to prevent corruption and promote ethical behaviour

  • makes recommendations to the full Board and discharges any other function referred to the committee by the full Board.

The Corporate Governance Committee:
  • oversees periodic reviews of the Board’s performance

  • reviews the Board’s composition and skills set

  • reviews the Board’s committees’ structure

  • reviews the nature and quality of information provided to the Board, including the Board paper process

  • assesses nominations for Board membership, according to Shareholder requirements, from time to time

  • reviews the powers and authorities granted to the Managing Director

  • reviews the Board charter

  • reviews the Directors’ Code of Conduct

  • monitors compliance with Directors’ duties under Schedule 10 of the State Owned Corporations Act 1989

  • oversees Director education, training and attendance at seminars

  • reviews processes to manage Directors’ conflicts of interests

  • oversees submissions made to the Statutory and Other Offices Remuneration Tribunal (SOORT), as required

  • makes recommendations to the Chairman, the full Board and/or management.

The Customer and Environment Committee:
  • oversees Sydney Water’s customer strategy

  • oversees Sydney Water’s environmental:

    • planning and management

    • performance

    • regulatory compliance