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Regional Economic Development (RED) Grants – Overview

Business, Government, Grant Funding

Regional Economic Development Grants Background

The Western Australian Regional Economic Development (RED) grants program is a statewide $50.85m state government initiative, designed to support locally driven projects that stimulate regional job creation and economic growth.   The state’s nine Regional Development Commissions deliver these grants on an annual basis.

Regional Economic Development Grants – Guidelines and Objectives

Applicants must adhere to the RED grant program guidelines. These describe the grant objectives, eligibility and assessment criteria, grant conditions, obligations, and how to apply.

However, it’s important to note that RED grant application form and guidelines can vary from one Development Commission to another. Make sure you refer to your Regional Development Commission’s website or give them a call for more information.

Projects must meet all RED grant eligibility and assessment criteria, be well-planned, have high economic impact, and be closely aligned with the RED grant program’s objectives. These include:

  • Sustainable jobs
  • Expanding or diversifying industry
  • Developing skills and or capabilities
  • Attracting new investment in the region
  • Increasing productivity

Regional Economic Development Grant – Assessment Criteria

RED grants assessment criteria may change from year to year, but as a general rule, focus on:

  • How the project meets at least one of the grant objectives.
  • A minimum 50% cash contribution to the project (preferably exceeding the minimum requirement).
  • Local partnerships and collaboration.
  • Delivery of local content outcomes.
  • Preference will be given to projects that align with the region’s themes (refer to relevant RDC web page or application form).
  • A wider economic development benefit outside of the applicant entity.
  • Capacity to undertake and complete the project.
  • Capacity to meet ongoing operating and maintenance costs following conclusion of the grant funding.
  • Financial capacity and sustainability, as well as two years of financial statements.

Local Content

Local content is about ensuring that your project engages the services of local suppliers, increasing regional employment and regional business participation.  As part of the assessment process, preference will be given to applications that demonstrate a high level of local content.

Regional Economic Development Grants – Frequently asked questions 

How can I apply?

Once the 2024 RED grant round opens, you can visit your local Development Commission’s website to access the grant guidelines and a link to begin your application (online via SmartyGrants). You can also contact your Regional Development Commission to seek further information about project eligibility and the application process.

How much time will I have to write my application?

Once the RED grant round is announced, applications are typically open for approximately eight weeks. However, don’t underestimate how long the application process will take. Make sure you allow yourself enough time to plan your project well, and gather relevant studies, designs and drawings, costings, approvals, and supporting documentation prior to commencing the grant writing process.

How much funding can I apply for?

Applicants can request funding of up to $250,000 per project under the RED grant program. There is also a cash co-contribution requirement. This means that applicants need to also put in at least the same amount of cash to the project.

What can I use RED grant funding for?

RED grant grant funding can be used for the purchase of goods or services to deliver the project, not for operational costs or retrospective expenditure. You should also include in your applicationa well planned budget that details the total cost of your project. Additionally, all project costs should be evidenced with recent quotes.

In order to apply, does my organisation have to be regionally based?

RED grants provide financial assistance to organisations that are based in the regions. If you’re located outside the region, you will need to demonstrate significant, sustainable regional benefits and a commitment to local decision-making, planning and delivery.

When is the next round?

Future rounds for the RED grant program have not yet been announced. Prospective applicants are encouraged to email their local Development Commission to be added to the RED grant mailing list and notified when the next round opens.

How long does it take for my application to be assessed?

Your project timeline should make provision for the assessment and decision-making process, which can take up to six months to complete.  Your application will be ineligible if you commence your project prior to this time.

Does my project have to be completed within a specific timeframe?

RED grant funding is available for projects that are advanced in their planning and, once commenced, will be completed within a 12-24 month timeframe.

Need Help with your Regional Economic Development Grant application?

Our team are highly experienced in writing Regional Economic Development Grants in Western Australia across a range of industry sectors and regions. What’s more, we live in the regions, so we understand first-hand the challenges of doing business in the regions and the nuances of regional economic development.  Our personal and professional commitment to supporting regional Western Australia shines through in the stories we craft for our clients.  Contact us to find out more.

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