Article:

Building Our Regions - $70m Fund for QLD Regional Infrastructure Projects

02 August 2019

Helen Wang, Senior Manager, BDO Australia |

Funding of $70 million is now available under Round 5 of the Queensland Government’s Building our Regions Fund.

The aim of Building our Regions is to provide funding for regional infrastructure projects that create flow-on economic development jobs and opportunities.

The $70 million in funding is available through three funds:

  • Regional Capital Fund – $34 million
  • Royalties for Resource Producing Communities Fund – $26 million
  • Remote and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Communities Fund – $10 million 

Under the Regional Capital Fund, eligible local governments may submit applications for construction projects that are seeking funding of $250,000 up to a maximum of $7 million per project.

The Royalties for Resource Producing Communities Fund is open to local governments of resource communities. Under the Royalties for Resource Producing Communities Fund, eligible local governments may submit applications for construction projects that are seeking funding of $250,000 up to a maximum of $7 million per project.

The Remote and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities Fund is open to local governments of remote and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Eligible local governments may submit applications for construction projects that are seeking funding of $50,000 up to a maximum of $1 million per project.

Eligibility

Local governments eligible to apply under each fund are as follows:

Regional Capital Fund Royalties for Resource Producing Communities Fund Remote and Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander Communities Fund
Bundaberg Banana Aurukun
Burdekin Barcaldine Balonne
Cairns Bulloo Barcoo
Cassowary Coast  Burke Blackall-Tambo
Douglas  Carpentaria Boulia
Fraser Coast Central Highlands Cherbourg
Gladstone Charters Towers Cook
Goondiwindi Cloncurry Croydon
Gympie Isaac Diamantina
Hinchinbrook Maranoa Doomadgee
Livingstone McKinlay Etheridge
Lockyer Valley Mount Isa Flinders
Mackay North Burnett Hope Vale
Mareeba Quilpie Kowanyama
Rockhampton  Weipa Lockhart River
Scenic Rim Western Downs Longreach
Somerset Whitsunday Mapoon
South Burnett   Mornington
Southern Downs   Murweh
Tablelands   Napranum
Toowoomba   Northern Peninsula
Townsville   Palm Island
    Paroo
    Pormpuraaw
    Richmond
    Torres
    Torres Strait Island
    Winton
    Woorabinda
    Wujal Wujal
    Yarrabah

Funding assessment process

Each project will pass through an expression of interest process and a detailed business case assessment.

Expressions of interest will need to describe the demand for the project, providing detailed information on the current economic environment within the local government area and/or region including:

  • Opportunities for ongoing economic growth and/or constraints on economic growth
  • Opportunities to improve the liveability and amenity of regional communities
  • The specific need for the proposed infrastructure and how it will assist in addressing the identified economic opportunities and/or constraints, and improve liveability and amenity
  • The consequences for the local/regional economy, industry and community if action is not taken and
  • Stakeholder (business, industry and community) recognition of the demand.

Business cases will require detailed information on:

  • Direct and indirect construction related economic benefits that are expected to be realised by the project
  • Direct and indirect ongoing economic benefits that are expected to be realised by the project
  • Other direct and indirect benefits, including social and environmental benefits, that are expected to be realised by the project
  • The ongoing operational and maintenance costs of the infrastructure and the capacity of the local government to fund these costs over the life of the infrastructure
  • The level of other investment (e.g. industry, business, universities) in the project and/or ongoing partnerships with these organisations in achieving the long-term objectives of the project.

A Cost Benefit Analysis will need to be undertaken to support the business case.

Funding deadlines and key dates

Applications for Round 5 funding open on 5 August 2019 with Expressions of Interest closing on 30 August 2019.

The Program is a competitive grants program and it is expected that the funding may be oversubscribed. As a result, it is necessary for your application to not only be eligible, but also of a high calibre to give your project the best chance of receiving funding. This means having an investment ready project with strong claims, supported by evidence, against the assessment criteria - project demand, economic benefit and value for money.

BDO can help you prepare

BDO can provide assistance in preparing your funding submission. To discuss the eligibility of your project please contact BDO Partner, Nicola Purser. If you would like to discuss your application in relation to issues on cost-benefit analysis and value for money, please contact our Economics specialist Mark Ingham.