• Funding and Contracting Services

    Fact Sheets

    Frequently Asked Questions

    (Questions listed below link to answers further down this page.)

    When does the Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy take effect?

    The Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy is effective from 1 July 2011.

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    What is the difference between a Grant and a Service Agreement?

    Grants provide one-off support to organisations for a specific purpose over a limited period of time. Grants are commonly associated with start-up or pilot initiatives and generally have fewer reporting and compliance requirements.

    Service agreements are designed to support the ongoing delivery of key services, with clear and appropriate reporting requirements. Service agreements are typically applied for longer term service arrangements. Simply, if the services being considered are likely to be required on an ongoing basis, a service agreement should be used.

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    Is there a maximum or minimum value for Grants?

    As long as the compliance requirements for grants under the Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy are met, there is no maximum or minimum value requirement.

    Note the policy states that grants should not constitute the entire financial base of an organisation and should be for a discrete purpose and time period.

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    Can a Government Agency ‘clawback’ any unused funds?

    Grants and ‘clawback’

    Grants provide financial assistance for a specified purpose and period. Any part of the funds allocated in a grant that are not used for the specified purpose must be repaid to the government agency.

    At the end of the specified grant period it must be demonstrated that the funds have been spent on their intended purpose. Further detail is provided in the Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy document.

    Service Agreement and ‘clawback’

    Service Agreements differ from grants in that they are longer term contracting arrangements for the delivery of services on behalf of government agencies. Under the Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy, where services have been delivered to the quality and quantity specified in the service agreement, repayment of any surplus must not be sought by a government agency. This applies to any service agreement established after 1 July 2011.

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    Are the clauses in the General Provisions negotiable?

    The General Provisions form the ‘base’ for a service agreement between a government agency and a service provider. A potential service provider can propose an alternate to any of the conditions in the General Provisions as part of its Offer. Alternative clauses may be accepted by the government agency and reflected in the award letter, or the government agency may elect to negotiate with the potential service provider to determine a clause which is suitable to both parties.

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    Are standard financial reporting requirements included in the new service agreement templates?

    A central theme of the Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy is reducing the administrative burden placed on community sector organisations. As such, financial reporting requirements are not included in the current service agreement templates.

    If financial reporting is required from service providers, this can be specified in the Community Services Request. The need for financial information must be proportionate with the value and risk inherent to the service agreement.

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    Can Government Agencies award multiple contracts from one Request for Tender process?

    Yes. It is possible that following a tender process a government agency will accept more than one offer.

    Government has the right to award multiple service agreements from one tender process, if that best meets the identified community need.

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    Will all Requests and Expressions of Interest be advertised on TendersWA?

    Yes. All Request and Expressions of Interest for the provision of Community Services with an estimated contract value greater than $20,000 are currently advertised through the TendersWA website (opens in new window).

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    If there is a sole provider of a particular service, can a decision be made not to go to tender?

    Government agencies are able to seek exemptions from competitive tendering requirements of State Supply Commission Policy if there is a genuine sole source of supply.

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    Will there be longer term service agreements under the new Policy?

    Long term service agreements are contracting arrangements with a three to five year contract term. The Delivering Community Services in Partnership Policy encourages government agencies to enter into longer term service agreements where possible, to provide funding certainty to community services organisations.

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