Regional Job Creation Fund - Round two - Frequently Asked Questions

Applicant Eligibility

Can the applicant details be changed once submitted?

Applicants should ensure they use the correct organisation name and details when applying as this generally cannot be changed once the project has been assessed.

For small businesses to meet the minimum five job criteria, is a consortium/joint application possible?

Applicants can submit a joint application for a single project, but a lead applicant will need to be nominated. If the application is successful, the lead applicant will enter into the funding deed and be ultimately responsible for the project – including the achievement of project outcomes.

Are local government organisations eligible to apply?

No, local government organisations are ineligible.

Are not for profit organisations eligible to apply for funding?

Yes, if they otherwise meet the eligible applicant requirements included in the Program Guidelines.

Can statutory authority organisations apply?

No, statutory authority organisations are ineligible.

Are there any limits on the revenues or size of the applicant company?

No, businesses of any size are eligible to apply but must have an Australian Business Number, be registered for Goods and Services Tax, have at least A$20 million in public liability insurance and be an eligible entity type as described in the Program Guidelines.

Are international businesses eligible to apply?

Yes, however international businesses will need to have an Australian Business Number, be registered for Goods and Services Tax, have at least A$20 million in public liability insurance and be an eligible entity type to enter into a funding deed if they are successful. 

Is an ASX listed company eligible?

Yes, if it is one of the entity types listed in the Program Guidelines and meets other eligibility requirements.

Is one business able to make two applications for two separate projects?

Yes, however as grant funds are limited, companies are encouraged to prioritise their applications.

Can religious organisations apply?

Yes, if they otherwise meet the eligible applicant requirements included in the Program Guidelines.

Can sole traders apply?

Yes, if they otherwise meet the eligible applicant requirements included in the Program Guidelines.

Can I apply if my business operates in retail, localised trades or administrative services?

Businesses whose primary operation is in the retail, localised trades or administrative services that serve only the local or regional community will not be eligible for assistance under this program.

The provision of financial assistance to businesses may require consideration of the impact on local competition. Competition issues will be reviewed as part of the assessment process to avoid advantaging or disadvantaging businesses legitimately competing in the same immediate market.

How can I demonstrate my business is financially viable and is likely to remain so?

When invited to submit a detailed application, a business will be asked to provide three years of continuous financial statements and to complete a datasheet showing financial details for the project. This information will be considered in the assessment.

If a business is unable to provide three years of financial history or would like to provide further evidence of financial viability, supporting information such as financial statements of principal investors and/or a letter from an external accountant confirming the applicant’s financial viability can also be submitted.

If I haven’t operated my business for three years, can I still apply?

A business can still apply if it has operated for less than three years but the applicant will need to provide evidence of financial viability and a justification why three years of financial statements cannot be provided. Strong experience of key staff involved in the project and evidence of alignment with the overall objective of the program and other criteria will also need to be provided. Applicants may also consider providing other evidence, such as financial statements of principal investors and/or a letter from their external accountant confirming the applicant’s financial viability. 

There is a significant risk an application will not be approved if the financial evidence provided to the Department of Regional NSW is not strong.

Does my business need to be registered for GST?

Yes, to be eligible the business must be registered for Goods and Services Tax.

Does my business need to have public liability insurance?

Yes, to be eligible the business must have at least $20 million public liability insurance or be able to purchase before entering into a funding deed if successful. Evidence of this policy will be required at the detailed application stage.

Can I apply using multiple entities/businesses within my organisation’s group structure to deliver an RJCF Project, e.g. one entity will incur capital expenses, and another entity will hire the workers for the job outcomes?

Yes. Where multiple entities within the same corporate structure will be used to deliver the project, this will be considered as a joint application. When applying, the lead applicant must provide supporting documentation to evidence the relationship between the applicant and the other entity, including detail on the organisation’s group structure and financial statements for the entities involved as well as consolidated financial statements for the group if applicable.

Project Eligibility

I have started my project; can I still apply for funding?

Generally no, under the Program Guidelines an applicant must show that business investment would not take place in regional NSW on the same timeline, or at all, without NSW Government assistance. Eligible costs will generally only be those incurred after a grant has been awarded. Please consult your allocated Business Development Manager if you have any questions. 

Is one stage of a larger multi-year project eligible for funding?

Yes, a project stage can be eligible for funding as long as the project stage is clear in scope and discrete from other stages, the project stage can be delivered by May 2023, the funding requested is no more than half of the cost of the project stage and the applicant has provided evidence of secured funding for remaining stages required to deliver the jobs within three years of signing a funding deed.

Are projects in the independent brewing sector eligible?

Where a project relates to the independent brewing sector, projects must address program criteria, including alignment with the relevant Regional Economic Development Strategy and the impact on NSW competitors. To be considered strategically aligned, applicants must demonstrate how the project:

  • Implements innovation in products, production or business processes;
  • Increases export sales or expansion into export markets; and
  • Is not primarily intended to achieve tourism outcomes (i.e. majority of project costs, project revenue and FTE creation must relate to production and not tourism outcomes).

For example, a brewery expansion focused on production enabling out of state sales, with a small hospitality element such as a kitchen/bar, would be eligible.

Are projects in the meat processing sector eligible?

Where a project relates to the meat processing sector, projects must address program criteria, including alignment with the relevant Regional Economic Development Strategy and the impact on NSW competitors. To be considered strategically aligned, applicants must demonstrate how the project:

  • Implements innovation in value adding, products or production processes;
  • Increases export sales or expansion into export markets; and/or
  • Creates efficiencies in the supply chain, benefitting multiple businesses in the sector.
Are projects in the agricultural sector eligible?

Where a project relates to the agricultural sector, projects must address program criteria, including alignment with the relevant Regional Economic Development Strategy and the impact on NSW competitors. To be considered strategically aligned, applicants must demonstrate how the project:

  • Implements innovation in value adding, products or production processes;
  • Increases export sales or expansion into export markets; and/or
  • Creates efficiencies in the supply chain, benefitting multiple businesses in the sector.
Are projects in the viticulture sector eligible?

Where a project relates to the viticulture sector, projects must address program criteria, including alignment with the relevant NSW Government policies or strategies and the impact on NSW-based competitors. To be considered strategically aligned, applicants must demonstrate how the project:

  • Implements innovation in value adding, products or production processes;
  • Increases export sales or expansion into export markets; and/or
  • Creates efficiencies in the supply chain, benefitting multiple businesses in the sector; and/or
  • Is not primarily intended to achieve tourist outcomes (i.e. majority of project costs, project revenue and FTE creation must relate to production and not tourism outcomes).

Projects which are exclusively for cellar door construction/expansion will not be eligible.

Is an accommodation-based expansion project for a major tourism attraction an eligible project?

Accommodation projects will generally not meet the competitive neutrality requirement but may be considered where the proposal is unique to the existing market and considered to be regionally significant and/or iconic enough to attract new significant overnight interstate and/or international visitors to the region. If a tourism project is not regionally iconic and not sufficiently differentiated from existing similar experiences, it is unlikely to increase the tourism market in the region. This will not meet the objective of the Fund. Applicants are encouraged to consult their relevant Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager before submitting an application  -  phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

Are tourism projects and/or tourism experiences considered to be an eligible project?

In order to meet the competitive neutrality requirement, the development of new regionally significant and/or iconic tourism experiences and visitor attractions are considered eligible if they will create new inter-state or international demand in the region (without impacting other NSW tourism businesses). If a tourism project is not regionally iconic and not sufficiently differentiated from existing similar experiences, it is unlikely to increase the tourism market in the region. This will not meet the objective of the Fund.

Applicants are encouraged to consult their relevant Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager before submitting an application - phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

Can the grant be used for equipment after the equipment has already been purchased?

No, grants cannot be for equipment that has already been purchased.

Are grants available for land development, education or health projects?

Eligible projects must align with existing NSW Government strategies such as the 20-Year Economic Vision for Regional NSW and the Regional Economic Development Strategies. Generally residential housing construction, education and health projects will be excluded as they are population serving industries.

What is a population serving project, and are they eligible?

Projects focused on population serving industries are generally not eligible. This includes projects that service only the local or regional community such as hospitality, retail, localised trades and construction, health, education, childcare and administrative services. 

Are companies relocating from NSW metro to regional eligible?

Yes, companies relocating their operations are eligible, but only new jobs and benefits will be considered in the assessment e.g. Jobs moving from metro Sydney to a Regional location will not be included but if the project creates 5 additional jobs it will be considered in the assessment.

Which NSW locations are not eligible for funding?

Projects based in Greater Sydney, Newcastle or Wollongong Local Government Areas are not eligible. Greater Sydney includes the Blue Mountains, Wollondilly and Hawkesbury Local Government Areas.

How you know if your project is based in an eligible region of NSW?

To find where your project is located within NSW Administrative Boundaries, including the Local Government Area (LGA), you can use NationalMap.gov.au. Search for your location, then select ‘Explore map data/New South Wales/State data/Administrative Boundaries’, and then select the + sign to show the LGA boundaries.  

If your office is in a metro location or interstate, yet the net benefits will be realised in a regional NSW area, are you eligible to apply?

Yes, if the jobs created are in a regional NSW area.

If the funding is being used for infrastructure, are there any restrictions on the ownership model of the future infrastructure?

No. Successful applicants will be required to commit to delivering the project scope and additional jobs as detailed in the funding deed. Depending on the structure, additional commitments, such as guarantees, may be required.

If a project is already underway but at very early stage which may take up to 7 ‐ 10 years to build, is it excluded?

Applicants are required to demonstrate the project would not occur in regional NSW at all, or in the same timeframe, without government investment. For example, if funding will allow a stage to be brought forward from year five to year one, it may be eligible.

Can the grant be used for project costs before a Letter of Offer of grant funding is received?

Projects should not have commenced prior to an offer of grant funding being made.  The NSW Government is under no obligation to pay any funding unless, and until, the project application is successful and both parties execute an agreed Funding Deed. Further, applicants are required to demonstrate the project would not occur in regional NSW at all or in the same timeframe without government investment. Where a larger project is being delivered in stages, see Q: Is one stage of a larger multi-year project eligible for funding?

Please speak to your Business Development Manager if you have concerns about your ability to order equipment and deliver the project within the program timelines.

Eligible Costs and Co-contribution

Can the grant be used to purchase non-fixed equipment to use in various locations in NSW?

Non-fixed equipment is an eligible cost if part of a larger project, as long as the project is anchored to a specific location within regional NSW, and the jobs created will be based in regional NSW. Applicants will also need to demonstrate how the project will continue to be delivered over the long term in regional New South Wales.    

Can the grant be used to purchase used or refurbished equipment?

Yes. Purchase of used or refurbished equipment is an eligible cost. However, purchasing these items directly from a related entity would be considered an in-kind contribution. See Q. What can be used as an in-kind co-contribution?.

Are there specific limitations for the use of funding if successful?

The project scope, planning and budget documentation that an applicant provides as part of their detailed application process, will guide the use of funding if the project is successful. The funding deed will outline the purpose, scope, and use of grant funding for your project, based on the information provided during the application process.

If a business is working in other regions or states as well as regional NSW can the funding be used to support the business in other states?

No. Project funding for RJCF is for projects based in regional New South Wales only. 

Can the preparation and planning costs before construction (i.e. developing detailed plans, speculative purchase of land) be considered in the overall co-contribution?

These costs are eligible as part of the project budget if they occur after the grant outcome is known and a Letter of Offer has been received. Costs prior to a Letter of Offer can not be included as co-contribution for the project.

What can be used as an in-kind co-contribution?

The Program Guidelines require a minimum 50 per cent cash co-contribution. In-kind co-contributions will only be considered in extenuating circumstances. Extenuating circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and justification must be provided for consideration. 

Examples of what is considered as in-kind co-contribution are: land or equipment ‘gifted’ by an external entity, or purchased by an applicant prior to a letter of offer for RJCF grant funding; services ‘gifted’ by an external entity to an applicant as part of the project delivery; cash already expended on a project prior to a letter of offer for RJCF grant funding.

There is a significant risk an application will not be approved if there is not a minimum 50 per cent cash co-contribution.

Please consult your allocated Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager about consideration of non-cash contributions to the project and your business circumstances.

If I have received other NSW Government assistance towards this project, can I apply for this fund?

No – not for direct funding of the same project.

There are other programs available to support businesses to deliver projects already funded by the NSW Government, for example training or regional skills relocation grants. Please talk to your Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager about these opportunities.

If I have received Australian Government assistance towards this project, can I apply for this fund?

A project is eligible if the project requires funding from both sources to enable the project to proceed (for example if both Australian Government assistance and assistance from RJCF Round Two is required to realise the total project outcomes). If the project can achieve the same outcomes through assistance already provided, then the project would not be eligible.

If I have applied for funding from other sources for this project that has not be confirmed, can I include it as a co contribution?

Generally co-contributions should be confirmed. Applicants will be required to provide confirmation of the co-contributions to the project in the application.

Are grants only available if a company can match the amount granted?

The applicant and other non-NSW Government cash co-contributions to the project must be at least 50 per cent of the total project cost. Cash co-contributions of less than 50 per cent, or that include in-kind contributions, may be considered in extenuating circumstances only.

Prospective applicants are encouraged to discuss their project with the relevant Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager before applying – phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

Can the 50 per cent co‐contribution from the applicant include staff wages to deliver the project?

No. Ongoing staff wages and salaries are not an eligible project cost. Applicants can consult with their relevant Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager to clarify the eligibility of aspects of their project - phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

Will a bank loan be considered an eligible co‐contribution?

Yes, loan funds are eligible as a co-contribution.

Please note that applicants are expected to have access to their nominated co-contribution available through the delivery of the project. Applicants will be required to provide evidence that this co-contribution is secured and confirmed.

Is the 50 per cent co-contribution for infrastructure works further restricted by the limit on NSW Government investment of $20,000 for every job created?

Applications will be assessed against both criteria.

If the project cost is $400,000 and will create 10 FTE positions, then the applicant may choose to apply for the maximum NSW Government contribution of $20,000 per job (i.e. $200,000). However, if the project cost is $500,000 and 10 FTE positions will be created, then the applicant should note the maximum NSW Government contribution of $20,000 per job will mean the maximum request will be $200,000, with a co-contribution of $300,000 from the applicant.

The amount of grant funds requested, relative to the number of jobs created and the level of co-contribution are also relevant to the Return on Government Investment and Affordability Assessment Criteria. Prospective applicants are encouraged to discuss their project with the relevant Department of Regional NSW Business Development Manager before applying  –  phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

What is the nature of the 50 per cent cash co-contribution? Can it be a bank loan or cash and what is the security needed?

The co-contribution can be cash reserves or a loan. Applicants will be required to provide evidence that this co-contribution is secured and confirmed, noting that applicants are expected to have access to their nominated co-contribution available through the delivery of the project.

Job Creation

What is the comparison date for demonstrating FTE growth?

The growth in FTE employees will be calculated from the date you receive an offer of funding. While projects must be completed by May 2023, successful applicants will have up to three years from the date the funding deed is signed to achieve the agreed employment outcomes. The project must have all committed FTE positions in place for at least six months within three years of signing a funding deed.

What is the definition of FTE?

One FTE position is equal to a ‘standard working week’ of 35 hours of someone directly employed by the company. Positions filled through the use of labour hire firms are not included.

How are job creation numbers calculated? Are direct and indirect jobs included?

The project must create at least five (5) new, direct FTE jobs. The forecast increase in jobs delivered by the project must be achieved within three years of signing the grant funding deed. The increase in FTE positions will be measured against the number of FTE positions employed by the applicant at the time the grant funding is offered and the employment outcomes required to be reported as a condition of the funding.

For the jobs to be recognised as new FTE, they must be directly employed by the applicant (or joint applicant). Positions filled through labour hire firms will not be considered as direct FTE and will not be recognised for the purposes of reporting.

Are project wages/salaries eligible to be funded under RJCF?

Funding can support wages for project-specific contracts to assist an applicant to deliver the capital works phase of a project, such as project management roles or consultants. 

Ongoing positions with the business are not considered eligible project costs under RJCF.

For example, a project management role created to deliver the construction and fit-out of a new factory can be considered an eligible project cost, however an existing or ongoing position created to operate the factory after its construction is not an eligible project cost.

Can jobs created to deliver my projects capital works be counted as new FTE?

No.

Can I claim apprentices and trainees (other supported employees) as part of the new job mix?

Yes. When invited to submit an application, applicants will be provided with compulsory documentation including a datasheet. This requires the identification of the types of jobs being created including apprentices and trainees.

Where the wage costs of apprentices and trainees are being supported by other Government funding, this should be noted in the application. 

Can I claim interns as part of the new jobs mix?

No. Typically internships are nonpaid, and short term which is not the intent of the fund to create ongoing jobs.

Is seasonal employment considered?

Seasonal employees are eligible to be counted towards new jobs created. The duration of their employment must be converted to FTE and the requirement for the project to create at least five new FTE positions will apply. (e.g.: 8 jobs employed for 3 months = 2 FTE.

For the jobs to be recognised as new FTE, they must be directly employed by the applicant. Positions filled through labour hire firms will not be considered as direct FTE and will not be recognised for the purposes of reporting.

Do the jobs have to be created and in place for a certain amount of time prior to the end of the project?

Projects must be completed no later than May 2023. Employment outcomes may be achieved over a three-year period from signing the funding deed but must be in place for at least six continuous months before the three-year period ends (recognising the jobs may not be realised immediately on completion of the project).

How is the dollar per job funding calculated, is it on the total project cost or grant amount?

On the grant amount.

Do indirect construction jobs for new infrastructure projects count?

Indirect jobs created during the project construction period do not count towards the new FTE positions.

Do jobs need to be full time ongoing or are part time jobs included in the assessment?

Part time jobs are eligible but need to be converted to FTE, for example a person working 17.5 hours per week is equal to 0.5 FTE. The requirement of at least five FTE positions for a minimum of 6 months will apply.

Do the employees have to reside in the same region?

The jobs must be created in regional NSW, directly with the applicant (or joint applicant). Where a project is delivered across multiple locations, each location must be eligible. The employee residence is not assessed.

Do casuals count as workers?

Yes, casual hours can be converted to FTE figures. Note that the objective of the program is to support projects creating new, ongoing jobs in regional NSW. To be counted towards the minimum five FTE job creation requirement in the Program Guidelines, the jobs need to be in place for six continuous months before the final report under the funding deed is due.

Can I transition existing casual workers to new full-time positions, and how is this counted as jobs growth?

Yes, casual workers can be transitioned to full-time or part-time positions and counted towards the new jobs’ growth for the project, calculated on an FTE basis. Note that it is only the increase in hours (converted to FTE) that can be claimed as jobs growth, not the existing hours already employed. For further information, see Q: How are job creation numbers calculated? Are direct and indirect jobs included?

Are jobs created by other businesses counted in the assessment?

No. The five (or more) new FTE jobs created must be directly employed by the applicant (or joint applicants).

Is the $20,000 cap per FTE job created or per employee?

The cap is for each FTE job created (one FTE is equal to a ‘standard working week’ of 35 hours).

How long do the new positions created need to last for?

The objective of the program is to support projects creating new, ongoing and sustainable jobs in regional NSW. Successful applicants will be required to complete the project by May 2023 at the latest. Employment outcomes must be in place for at least six continuous months within three years of signing a funding deed.

If the project is based in regional NSW, can you employ people across Australia?

The new jobs created must be based in regional NSW.

Does the support only relate to new projects as opposed to early stage planned projects?

Applicants are required to demonstrate the project would not occur in regional NSW at all or in the same timeframe without government investment.

Is refurbishment of facilities an eligible project?

Refurbishment projects are eligible if the applicant can demonstrate that at least five new FTE positions will be created (not including construction period jobs), and other eligibility criteria are met.

Are improving manufacturing processes and/or training for higher skilled jobs on new technologies eligible projects?

Investment in new technology or improving manufacturing processes are eligible projects if they will create at least five new FTE jobs. Training employees to use new machinery or technology is an eligible cost if it is directly related to the project and if the expenditure is incurred within the program period (i.e. by May 2023 at the latest) and is not supported by other NSW or Australian Government Funding (e.g. Smart and Skilled).

Please provide further information about the Special Activation Precincts

View further information about Special Activation Precincts here.

Assessment Criteria

What relevant NSW Government policies or strategies should my project align with?

Projects should align with and support key NSW Government policies, priorities, strategies. These Strategies set out a clear pathway for regional NSW to continue growing while supporting people’s decision to live, work and invest in regional areas.

To identify how your project aligns with these policies or strategies, information can be found here:
What is a key industry?

An industry driving growth in a regional economy. Typically, key industries can be categorised as engine industries, emerging engine industries, and enabling industries. Further information on these key industry types can be found in the Relevant Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) and the 20 Year Economic Vision for Regional NSW.

What are Regional Economic Development Strategies and how do they apply to my proposed project area?

They are the economic development strategy for a region and usually incorporate more than one local council area. They have been developed by the NSW Government together with local councils and can be viewed here. The Regional Economic Development Strategies align with a Local Government Area (LGA). View the LGA listing here.

How do I demonstrate my business has the skills and capacity to deliver the project?

Applicants should provide information on any previous capital works or similar scale projects the business has undertaken, or any relevant experience in growing the business. Tell us about the experience and skills of key staff, contractors or consultants delivering the project and attach evidence of this to your application.

Our project intends to introduce new technology to Australia. Will there be additional approvals required?

The grant does not override normal development and regulatory approval processes. When considering project and job creation milestones in your application, approval timelines must be considered.

Please consult your allocated Business Development Manager who can provide introductions to other government agencies.

What is a Cost Benefit Analysis?

A Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) seeks to determine the value of the contribution of the project to the NSW economy. A CBA includes all costs and benefits, such as benefits to NSW businesses and Government, and benefits to NSW residents and workers. 

How do I demonstrate the benefits of my project to NSW?

Applicants should provide information on how projects benefit the NSW economy such as export opportunities, import replacement potential onshoring, or footloose projects, i.e. where projects could otherwise occur interstate or in an overseas location.

How is the Cost Benefit Ratio calculated?

The Cost Benefit Ratio is calculated by the NSW Government based on information provided by applicants in their application, which is collected on a standard format datasheet. A copy of the datasheet will be provided to applicants invited to submit an application after completing an Expression of Interest. A video resource on completing the datasheet, as well as written notations, will also be made available to relevant applicants.

Is there a limit on the amount of grant funds allocated to sectors or geographic areas?

No, although these factors may be considered as part of assessment process. 

Application Process

Does my business have to complete both application forms?

The application process has two stages:  Expression of Interest (EOI) and detailed application. Each business must complete an EOI as the first stage. An EOI needs to include a basic overview of your proposed project only. EOI’s must be submitted online at nsw.gov.au/RJCF.

Each EOI will be allocated to a Business Development Manager or Officer who will review the EOI and discuss the Regional Job Creation Fund Guidelines and process with the applicant. If the applicant and project meet the eligibility criteria and the applicant chooses to proceed, an invitation and pack of supporting materials for the detailed application will be provided to the applicant. Applicants can commence preparation of their detailed application upon receipt of their invitation and pack of supporting materials. The BDM can also provide assistance in guiding applicants with the preparation of applications and supporting documents. The business must submit a detailed application in order to be considered for funding.

What if I am missing supporting materials i.e. datasheet template and/or detailed application link?

Applicants are encouraged to contact their Business Development Manager to request these missing documents  –  phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au if you are unsure who to contact.

What if I do not have a clear or accurate forecast of project requirements for FTE and budget at this point?

When completing your detailed application, provide as much information and certainty as possible. This should include building in as much contingency as possible where a cost estimate is unknown, and committing only to what is feasible within the timeframe of the project. Applicants are encouraged to contact their Business Development Manager for support – phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au if you are unsure who to contact.

Grant Administration

When will the grant payments be made to my business?

There will be performance-based milestone payments defined in a funding deed. Typically, there will be a share of the grant paid up front with subsequent payments based on project and/or employment creation milestones.

Please note that applicants are expected to have access to their nominated co-contribution through the delivery of the project, as co-contribution to costs incurred will need to be spent when claiming milestone payments.

Is there a possibility of an extension to the latest date projects can be completed?

No, projects must be completed, and grant funds spent by May 2023. However, successful applicants will have up to three years from the date the funding deed is signed to achieve the agreed employment outcomes.

Where an applicant is aware of delivery issues outside their control, such as the impact of COVID-19 on supply chains, contingencies and controls should be built into project plans in the application process.

How will the grant funds be paid? For example, will it be on a milestone basis or on completion of project?

Payments will be on the achievement of performance-based milestones. Successful applicants will need to provide evidence of job creation. A sample funding deed is available on the program’s website.

Will receipt of a grant under the Regional Job Creation Fund be considered income by the ATO?

Applicants and potential applicants are encouraged to seek professional advice about the potential tax impact of a grant.

How soon will I receive a response to my Expression of Interest and detailed application?

Applicants will be notified of the outcome within five working days of lodgment of an Expression of Interest. Applicants will be advised of the outcome of their detailed application from late June 2022, or as soon as possible after a grant is approved at the NSW Government’s discretion.

How can I find out the contact details for my local NSW Government Business Development Manager?

Phone 1300 679 673 or email regionalnsw.business@regional.nsw.gov.au.

What happens if I can’t complete the requirements of the program?

Performance-based milestone payments will not be made to the business.

As funding is contingent on employment creation, failure to deliver employment outcomes up to three years from signing the funding deed will mean grant payments already received will need to be returned in part or whole.

Is the funding a share in equity, a grant or a loan?

The funding is a grant.

What other forms of support are offered for small businesses together with this grant opportunity? For example, employment services and/or development support? How does the Government assist small business development along with the grant funding?

The NSW Government Small Business Commissioner coordinates a range of resources for small businesses, which are available at smallbusiness.nsw.gov.au.

If you are a lead applicant, is everything administered through your organisation?

Grant payments will be made to the lead applicant. Successful applicants will need to provide evidence of eligible expenditure to claim milestone payments. In a joint application, eligible expenditure may be incurred by any of the parties to the application.

What would happen if COVID‐19 or other unforeseen circumstances resulted in project failure? Would the company have to repay the grant?

The grant may be proportionally reduced if the number of new jobs specified in the funding deed or project scope are not realised within the terms of the funding deed.

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