Government hands out more than $25bn in non-competitive grants

A new report shows the number of confidential ‘closed non-competitive grants’ by the Morrison government has surged in recent years.

(Image: Private Media/Mitchell Squire)

Pork-barrelling through grants schemes has been one of the trademarks of the Morrison government and threatens to haunt its election campaign. Now there is evidence it has overseen an increase in secretive non-competitive grants that can be manipulated to suit its interests. 

A report released by the Australian National Audit Office gives some insight into the government’s total grant expenditure over the past four years, and how that funding has changed.

The report analyses more than 108,000 federal grants, worth more than $60 billion, allocated between January 2018 and June this year. While a lot of the data reflects normal government business — legitimate spending on health, local government and aged care — there are also some concerning trends. 

Keep reading to find out how the government is dealing out grant money.

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