Costs, Complexification and Crisis: Government's Human Services Contracting "System" Hurts Everyone

Costs, Complexification and Crisis: Government's Human Services Contracting "System" Hurts Everyone

The National Council of Nonprofits has issued a report highlighting widespread problems in government contracting with nonprofit human services agencies, including not paying the full costs of services, paying late, changing the terms of the contract mid-stream, and imposing unnecessarily complex contracting requirements and reporting processes. The study, Costs, Complexification and Crisis: Government's Human Services Contracting "System" Hurts Everyone (40 pages, PDF), explains how such practices put undue pressure on nonprofits, with ripple effects that reach philanthropic organizations; deprive people in need of assistance; waste taxpayer dollars by duplicating efforts; and in turn hurt the broader economy. Based in part on the Urban Institute's Human Service Nonprofits and Government Collaboration: 2010 National Survey of Nonprofit Government Contracting and Grants (52 pages, PDF), the report provides state data on the prevalence of each problem and suggests actions for state and federal governments, nonprofits, funders, and citizens to take.