A Department of State is established by the Governor-General under section 64 of the Constitution. The Constitution recognises that core aspects of government operations are conducted by departments of state. A Department of State has the flexibility to accommodate policy and functional activities in various ways. For example, functions in departments can be separately branded, giving them a distinct identity, and legislation may be used to establish positions or entities, with specific roles and responsibilities, which are administratively supported by the department.
A Department of State includes anybody (except a body corporate), person, group of persons or organisation that is prescribed by an Act or the rules in relation to a specified Department of State. Does not include any part of a Department of State that is a listed entity.