Bass Coast,

Opportunities for larger community grants

Bass Coast Shire Council’s Community Grants Program will undergo some changes, with two grant rounds to be held every year offering increased funding for all three grant categories.

Council decided at Wednesday night’s meeting to restructure the Program to provide community groups and organisations with more time and opportunity to apply for funding, as well as apply for larger grants.

The three grant categories – Minor Capital Works, Community Festivals, Celebrations and Events Grant and General Community Grant – will remain, however the funding for all categories will increase to $5,000 and two projects will be funded up to $10,000; one in each round.

In the previous structure, Minor Capital Works and Community Event grants were only offered in one out of four rounds, and General Community grants were limited to $1,000 for equipment and $2,500 for other projects.

Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Kimberley Brown, said the changes to the Program won’t affect the total amount available in grants, but would allow longer periods for community groups to prepare their grant applications.

“The Community Grants Program budget has been set at $254,000 for 2015/16 and $127,000 will be available in each of the two grant rounds,” Cr Brown said.

“As part of the Community Grants process improvement, the assessment criteria will also be simplified to make it as easy as possible for our local community groups and organisations to apply for funding to support their projects.”

Funding for Round 4 of the 2015-16 Program scheduled for February 2016 will be combined with the promotion and launch of the revised program in February 2016.