From 1 July 2016, gas companies in NSW can apply to the Minister to establish an authorised local Community Benefits Fund covering the local area in which they are undertaking gas exploration or production.

Download the Community Benefits Fund contribution form in Word format Word (244 KB) or PDF format PDF (510 KB).

The establishment of the Fund is an action of the NSW Gas Plan. The NSW Government has committed that for every $2 paid by a gas producer (that holds a petroleum title) into an authorised Fund, the company will receive a $1 rebate on its gas royalties, up to a maximum of 10% of the royalty due in each year.

Community Benefits Funds are to benefit the local community where gas exploration and production occurs. The other objectives of the Community Benefits Fund are to ensure that;

  1. lasting and mutually beneficial relationships are developed between gas companies and the communities in which they operate;
  2. local communities are involved in decisions to fund projects in the local communities;
  3. funding decisions promote community development projects that support local and social enterprise, are transparent and there is accountability for these decisions; and
  4. efficient, effective and transparent governance and administration arrangements for the Fund.

Individuals, organisations or enterprises that deliver local and social community development initiatives in the areas of health, education, environment, economic development and heritage and sport, arts and culture are eligible to apply for funding grants.

The Government has appointed the Rural Assistance Authority to administer the Fund. The Rural Assistance Authority will manage the establishment of a local Community Benefits Fund Committee whose role will include to set the strategic direction of the Fund and to determine the successful grant applications.

For more detailed information on the operation of the Fund and the Guidelines, visit Rural Assistance Authority External link.