In an open letter on the Cabinet Office website, civil society minister Nick Hurd has announced a new £10m Investment & Contract-Readiness Fund designed to help civil society organisations become ready for new forms of social investment and for new levels of public service contracting.
In the letter Hurd explains that the recent green paper Modernising Commissioning prompted over 400 responses from third sector organisations and that these and other consultations have shaped the recent (11th July 2011) white paper, Open Public Services, previously mentioned here on this blog. The white paper is part of a continuing ‘listening exercise’ until the end of September.
Hurd’s letter also draws attention to Contract Finder, the new central ‘portal’ for all government contracts, which replaces SupplyGov. This, Hurd claims, will open up public contracting to SMEs, “including civil society organisations meeting this definition”.
Third Sector Online covers the story here.