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Increased Funding for Community Grants Program

10 February 2023

Southern Grampians Shire Council resolved at Wednesday’s ordinary Council meeting to allocate the unspent funds from the 20/21 COVID Hardship Fund to the 2023/24 Community Partnership Grants program budget.

Through the 2020/21 Budget process, Council allocated the full amount of the year’s rate increase to the hardship fund totaling $328,000 of which $109,431 remains unspent.

Southern Grampians Shire Council Mayor Cr David Robertson said the Hardship Assistance Policy and funds were designed to provide support to ratepayers who found themselves struggling through the pandemic with Council related expenses.

“We were pleased to be able to support those within our community who found themselves suffering hardship during COVID, and through this fund, we were also able to support a number of our local businesses,” said Cr Robertson.

“This included covering the 2021/22 Local Laws permits and the 2022 Calendar Year Environmental Health fees/registrations for all compliant businesses.

“We now have just over $100,000 remaining which Council has determined to reallocate to the Community Partnership Grants to ensure that that money continues to support and importantly remain within our communities,” said Cr Robertson.

This money will form part of the 2023/24 Community Partnership Grants program with round one opening later in the year.

“We see this as a really positive outcome as each year our Community Grants program is very popular and over-subscribed in some categories, with so many great and innovative projects needing a bit of financial support.

“By reallocating these unspent funds, we have the opportunity to boost next financial year’s program from $200,000 to over $300,000 to grow initiatives, and kick-start projects and events that bring joy and benefit our Southern Grampians Shire residents.

“We currently have the final round open for 2022/23 which closes on Friday 24 February 2023, so if you or your community group has a project that improves the lives of those within our townships, check out the eligibility criteria and apply today,” concluded Cr Robertson.

Categories include Community Infrastructure, Arts and Cultural Development, Community Strengthening, Tourism and Events, Environmental Sustainability, and Heritage.

For more information on the current grants program, visit

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