Lord Mayor’s COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program Guidelines

Brisbane City Council is providing $3 million in direct financial assistance to community, cultural, and sport and recreational groups leasing a Council-owned or managed community facility, to help them rebuild and re-commence services to residents after the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Lord Mayor’s COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program will help not-for-profit lessees cover the costs of operating expenses incurred during their forced closure. It will also support leaseholders who have been unable to do maintenance works on their buildings due to lack of revenue as a result of the pandemic.

Eligible organisations can apply for funding of up to $10,000 towards operating expenses incurred between 1 January 2020 and 30 June 2020, and future minor maintenance works at Council community leased facilities.

Applications are now open. The Program will close when funding is expended. 

Learn about the Lord Mayor's COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program:

  1. Introduction
  2. Eligibility and program requirements
  3. What can be funded?
  4. Assessment criteria and process
  5. Application process
  6. Acquittal
  7. Enquiries
  8. Terms and conditions
  9. Glossary

1. Introduction

The not-for-profit sector in Brisbane is experiencing a range of impacts arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Program objective

The Program aims to assist not-for-profit organisations (community, cultural, sport and recreation lessees) that are experiencing hardship due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, so that they can recommence and continue their services and programs.

2. Eligibility and program requirements

Who can apply?

Applicants must:

  • hold a lease of a Council owned or managed community facility
  • be an incorporated not-for-profit organisation, or be auspiced by an incorporated not-for-profit organisation that is able to accept legal and financial responsibility for the project or activity; and
  • be based within the Brisbane local government area (LGA).

If an auspice not-for-profit organisation is nominated, a letter from the auspice not-for-profit organisation must be provided, signed by the chair, president or chief executive officer (or equivalent) of the organisation, agreeing to auspice the proposal.

Eligible organisations may apply for funding for each Council community facility where they are the current lessee (until available funds have been expended).

Ineligible applications

Applications will be deemed ineligible if identified as:

  • incomplete
  • organisations that are not a lessee of a Council owned or managed facility
  • political organisations
  • an individual(s)
  • for-profit organisations
  • Queensland or Australian Government departments
  • educational institutions
  • applicants who have previously been successful in obtaining Council grants but have outstanding acquittals or debts.

The following will NOT be funded:

  • proposals that do not meet the Program objective
  • primarily commercial or fundraising ventures
  • debt payments
  • sponsorship, prizes, award ceremonies, fundraisers or competitions
  • hospitality, i.e. food and alcohol costs
  • travel costs and allowances
  • services that duplicate other existing services
  • donations to individuals or organisations
  • other projects or costs currently financially supported by Council, including rates and rent to Council
  • staff wages
  • operational costs that have already received support from other programs.

3. What can be funded?

The Program will support eligible organisations to respond to impacts and needs arising directly from the COVID‑19 pandemic.

Eligible organisations can apply for funding of up to $10,000 towards operating expenses incurred between 1 January 2020 and 30 June 2020, and future minor maintenance works at Council community leased facilities.

Examples of eligible operational expenses include:

  • utilities (water charges will be subject to retail component only)
  • insurance
  • security.

Applicants are required to provide evidence of the claimed expense (i.e. a past or current bill).

Eligible future minor maintenance works must be completed within 12 months of the notification date and include planned maintenance that may not occur due to loss of revenue. For example:

  • roof repairs
  • plumbing repairs
  • painting
  • general building works.

Applicants will be required to supply a quote and to obtain necessary approvals for the proposed works including, but not limited to, development approval and/or application for works.

In keeping with Council’s Local Buy Policy, local contractors and/or suppliers within the Brisbane LGA are to be utilised to complete works.

Delivery of funded works is required to adhere to Queensland and Australian Government health guidelines relating to the COVID-19 pandemic (refer to www.health.qld.gov.au).

This is not an exhaustive list and applicants are encouraged to speak to an officer supporting the Program in Connected Communities, Lifestyle and Community Services, on (07) 3403 8888 to discuss their application and eligibility.

GST

If the applicant organisation or auspice organisation is GST registered, 10% GST will be added to the funding provided as an itemised GST gross-up.

If the applicant organisation or auspice organisation is not GST registered, 10% GST will be added to the funding provided, but will not be itemised as GST.

For advice on GST, applicants should contact their tax advisor, or the Australian Taxation Office on 13 24 78 or visit the ATO website.

4. Assessment criteria and process

Eligible applications will be assessed against the following criteria.

  • Demonstrated financial hardship arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. Evidence must be provided to show that without the assistance being provided, the organisation would be unable to recommence services or activities it was delivering prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Demonstrated benefit for the community, organisation and/or its clients/members.

Applications will be assessed as follows.

  • Council officers assess eligibility against the Program Guidelines.
  • Council officers will appraise the eligible applications against the assessment criteria to provide recommendations to Council’s delegate.
  • Council’s delegate makes the final decision regarding funding allocation.

In some instances, successful applicants may not receive the full amount of the funding requested. If the proposal cannot proceed without the full amount of funding requested, this should be indicated in the application.

5. Application process

All applications are to be submitted via the online application system, SmartyGrants. Applications will only be accepted if submitted via the online application form and associated templates. The online application system will allow applicants to save, develop and print out applications before they are submitted. Support material can also be attached to the online application.

Once an applicant has submitted an application through SmartyGrants:

  • the applicant will receive an email confirming receipt of the application
  • the submitted application will be kept confidential and the contents will not be disclosed to any person outside the application and assessment process.

If the applicant is successful in obtaining funding, Council will send them a funding agreement that must be completed and returned prior to funding being provided.

6. Acquittal

A completed acquittal report is due within 12 months of the notification date and explains the outcomes of the project and how the funds were spent. It demonstrates that funding has been used for the purpose for which it was provided, including a report of financial transactions and whether the project achieved its intended objectives.

Successful applicants will receive a link to an acquittal form that will be attached to their application in SmartyGrants.

7. Enquiries

Further information is available by contacting Council on (07) 3403 8888 and asking to speak with an officer supporting the Lord Mayor’s COVID-19 Direct Assistance Program in Connected Communities, Lifestyle and Community Services.

People with a hearing impairment or speech impairment can contact Council through the National Relay Service (NRS):

  • TTY users phone 13 36 77 then ask for (07) 3403 8888
  • Speak and Listen users phone 1300 555 727 then ask for (07) 3403 8888
  • internet relay users connect to the NRS (www.relayservice.com.au) and then ask for (07) 3403 8888.

Information on the Program is available in other languages by contacting the Translating and Interpreter Services on 13 14 50 and asking to be connected to Council on (07) 3403 8888. All enquiry services are free.

Refer to the SmartyGrants help guide for technical assistance when submitting an application. The SmartyGrants support desk is open from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday AEDT, on (03) 9320 6888 or by email to service@smartygrants.com.au.

8. Terms and conditions

Successful applicants must abide by Council’s terms and conditions as part of the funding agreement.

Only Council has authority to approve funding. Approval of funding does not imply that Council has given any other consent.

9. Glossary

This Glossary contains a number of terms and phrases applicants may need to be familiar with when planning an application.

The acquittal report is a report that accurately reports on the funded activities and the expenditure of Council’s funding and includes details on how the funding was spent, the activities undertaken and the outcomes of the funded activities. Council will provide a template for the organisation to complete.

An auspice not-for-profit organisation is an incorporated not-for-profit organisation that accepts and manages the legal and financial responsibility of the funding on behalf of the unincorporated not-for-profit organisation.

Community benefit describes tangible and intangible benefits and opportunities to members of the public and can include cultural, social, economic and environmental outcomes.

Eligible means that the applicant or project satisfies the conditions for funding.

GST stands for goods and services tax payable pursuant to the GST Laws. If an applicant or auspice not-for-profit organisation is GST registered, 10% GST will be added to the funding as an itemised GST gross-up. If an applicant or auspice not-for-profit organisation is not GST registered, the 10% GST will be added to the funding, but not itemised as GST.

GST Laws mean the GST law (as defined by A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999 (Cth)) together with all other laws and regulations which impose or regulate the implementation and operation of the GST.

In-kind contribution or in-kind support is the dollar value of non-cash contributions to a project that would otherwise have needed to be paid for. It includes, but is not limited to, volunteer labour, administrative support, rent-free office space, accommodation or donations of materials or equipment. These contributions should be given a dollar value and must be included in the proposed budget.

Notification date means the date of notification of the application outcome.

Not-for-profit organisation is the term applied to organisations where the constitution states that any profits or surpluses must be used to further the objectives of the organisation rather than benefit an individual or group of individuals. 

Last updated:21 July 2020