Commonwealth Grant Agreements

Finance has developed a series of user models and manuals to assist the Commonwealth in its licensing activities; including Models of Grant Opportunities, Grant Agreements and Variations. The new set of documents available is a major improvement over the complex agreements previously used by the government that were unreasingly too favourable to the Commonwealth government. Contractual risk is now more equitable between the state and the beneficiary, and contracting will be a simple, faster and less costly process through standardized agreements. Starting in early 2017, the federal government streamlined grant management by standardizing the way grants are designed, implemented and managed for the benefit of stakeholders and the community as a whole. The Rationallining Government Grants Administration (SGGA) initiative (led by the Ministry of Finance) played an important role in consolidating and standardizing grant services at two centres of excellence to create a common business and IT services platform, GrantConnect. The aim is to improve the user experience in general by standardizing, centralizing and improving efficiency and, in general, enabling better policy development through data analysis. Traditionally, Commonwealth grant recipients, particularly in the charitable sector, have faced a series of different grant agreements depending on the department concerned. Agreements have different approaches to provisions such as the right to subcontracting, ownership or licensing of intellectual property, the ability of the Commonwealth to denounce an agreement out of convenience, etc. GrantConnect, an online web platform, was created to provide access to a number of information about Commonwealth scholarships, including advertising for scholarships.

It functions as the new information system for government grants, in which all Australian government grants are competed for agencies using one of the two platforms cited. Capital grants and research grants are not covered by GrantConnect. As part of the process, counsel for the Australian government consulted with users and noted a number of issues related to the old forms of alternative government grant agreements, including the following areas: the two centres of excellence, known as the Hubs, are the Business Grants Hub within the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, which provides program and supply design services and a community grant centre within the Department of Social Services, which provides administrative services to Australian government clients. Agencies and organizations that are primarily responsible for providing scholarship programs to individuals and the community sector. Phase 2 of the project began in July 2017. At this point, the awards are reported on the GrantConnect website. This means that all grants will be placed in a single format, in a local location, that will facilitate the efficient and transparent presentation of the results of the Australian government`s funding rounds. As part of the Australian government`s initiative to reduce bureaucracy, the Department of Finance has developed a financial-scale financial assistance model that should be used by businesses to make low-risk grants. The conditions of acquittal depend on the specific grant. There is no plan for all acquittals on the GrantConnect website.