Grants between $50,000 and $500,000 are now available for community projects in small towns in round three of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) which opens tomorrow (25 October).
Regional Australia Minister Mr Simon Crean said the Federal Government had improved RDAF in response to community feedback to make it easier to apply and broaden the projects which could be funded.
“Round three will directly address feedback from communities by targeting $50 million for projects in towns with a population of 30,000 or less.”
Mr Crean said round four would be rolled out at the same time and provide $175 million through grants of between $500,000 and $15 million to deliver priority regional infrastructure in partnership with funding from state and local governments, and the private sector.
“We will aim to allocate at least $40 million to arts and culture projects in rounds three and four – the amount provided to the sector in rounds one and two.”
Mr Crean said RDAF would continue to drive a cultural change in regional funding by focusing on priorities of persistence and projects that stacked up, partnership and leverage, and regional reach.
“Regional communities understand the benefits of joining the dots and building strong investment partnerships with the three levels of government, and in some cases, the private sector. The regions are determining ‘what’ is needed and the Federal Government is providing the ‘how’.”
RDA Sunshine Coast Chair Prof Max Standage encouraged community groups to put forward their projects.
“RDA Sunshine Coast encourages community groups and the Sunshine Coast Council to put forward projects that have broad community support and are able to clearly articulate linkages to the recently completed Sunshine Coast Regional Roadmap 2012-31.”
The new guidelines will be available on the RDA website (www.rda.gov.au) from Thursday, 25 October.
Applicants can submit one Expression of Interest (EOI) for round three and one for round four – for different projects. The EOI process closes on 6 December 2012.
For further details of the remaining rounds, revised guidelines and EOI forms, visit: www.regional.gov.au/regional/programs/rdaf.aspx.
Mr Crean said details of round five would be announced soon, delivering the remaining three rounds of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) under the Federal Government’s Minerals Resource Rent Tax.