What is an operating subsidy?

    An Operating Subsidy is funds provided by the Town to an eligible party. The purpose of the funds are to support the overall operating capacity of the eligible party to deliver programs or services which improve the social health and well being of individuals and the community, aligned to the Town’s Strategic Community Plan outcome areas.  

    Why is it being reviewed?

    Definitions as based on the Outcomes Framework WACOSS Report July 2018 :

    Outcomes are long-term and aspirational. For example ‘An empowered community with a sense of pride, safety and belonging (ToVP, SCP S3)”

    Activity/ outputs are the programs, servicers, tools, workshops etc that are developed or take place in order to achieve an outcome. For example, ‘In collaboration with key partners and stakeholders, the City of Blue Sky Thinking will design and deliver three workshops annually, for a minimum of 10 local sporting and recreation clubs, to raise awareness of Healthy Relationships, gender equality and Domestic and Family violence  support services.

    An indicator is specific and measurable, linked to an appropriate data source and helps to demonstrate that an outcome is being achieved. For example, ‘Two months post the workshop, 60% of sporting and recreational clubs who attended the workshops will report that they feel empowered to discuss gender equality and healthy relationships, and have seen a positive cultural shift towards gender equality at a local level; and that they also feel confident to refer people to appropriate local support services’.  

    The Town recognises that a thriving and strong community includes diverse sporting and recreational groups, cultural and community service organisations and social enterprises, which support and contribute to the quality of life of individuals and the community as a whole.

    The Town does not have a formal Operating Subsidy Program in place. As such the Town is currently reviewing how operating subsidies are assessed and allocated, to ensure a transparent and consistent practice in the future. This is important as the Town has a responsibility to ensure that finances are managed appropriately, sustainably and transparently for the benefit of the community.

    At a National and State level there is a transition towards outcomes based commissioning and reporting. This means that organisations which apply for, or receive government funds, will need to demonstrate the individual and/or community ‘outcomes’ they are achieving. The Town is aligning to this approach so we can demonstrate how eligible parties are using rate payers funds for the benefit of the community.  

    How can i apply for an operating subsidy?

    At present the Town is drafting a formal Operating Subsidy Program. The endorsement of the program is scheduled for the later half of 2019.  Should funds been approved in the 2019/20 financial budget, the funding program will be opened and widely advertised.

    How can i get involved and provide my feedback?

    Community consultation will take place in three distinct stages:

    1. Stakeholder meetings to develop the first draft policy and management practice.
    2. Stakeholder workshop to review and test the first draft policy and management practice.
    3. Broad public comment on the final draft. 
    We will be seeking public comment on the final draft in due course.