Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean.
Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean. Inga Williams

Government grants help develop small towns across Australia

GRANTS worth a total of $50 million will be set aside for towns with less than 30,000 residents, under the new round of the Regional Development Australia Fund.

Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean said the grants would form round three of the $2 billion fund that helped Labor secure government, based on a deal with the crossbenchers after the 2010 election.

Mr Crean said a further $175 million was set aside for "strategic infrastructure projects" in regional areas, under round four of the program.

"Both rounds will be rolled out at the same time - so $225 million is available now for partnership projects right across Australia," he said.

"We will also soon be announcing details of round five, which will confirm in full our commitment to delivering RDAF.

"It will mean all our commitments in relation to this program will be announced in advance of the next election."

He said of those projects eligible for funding in rounds three and four of the RDAF, up to $40 million would go to arts and culture projects

Mr Crean said those projects which were not approved for funding in the first two rounds of the program needed to persist and apply again.

"More than half of the 46 projects successful in the second round missed out in the first round - but they persisted and got their project up," he said.

"Keep working with your regional development Australia committee - it's the committee that decides which Expressions of Interest (EOI) are selected as priority projects to proceed full applications."


Application information

  • The new guidelines will be available on the RDAF website from Thursday, October 25.
  • The EOI process will close on Thursday, 6 December, 2012.
  • For more information go to

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