Environmental Works Grants Program
We provide a financial incentive to rural landowners for projects that support sustainable land management practices, especially protecting and enhancing remnant vegetation, through our Environmental Works Grants Program.
You can apply for funds for a range of environmental projects including:
- fencing areas of remnant vegetation, including paddock trees to exclude livestock
- revegetation works which:
- complement remnant vegetation on private properties or in road reserves
- link or strengthen significant habitat areas or corridors
- are required in a Land Management Plan
- stabilise salinity recharge areas through native revegetation
- works to help control/manage minor erosion
- environmental weed control in good quality native vegetation, in association with other vegetation protection measures such as revegetation and fencing to exclude stock
Note: Waterway revegetation projects are given low priority for funding under this program because assistance is available through Melbourne Water’s Stream Frontage Management Program.
Applications for the 2021 Environmental Works Grant Program will open on 1 September 2020.
To be eligible, your property must be:
- located within the City of Whittlesea
- 2 hectares or greater in size
- zoned for rural purposes (Green Wedge Zone, Green Wedge A Zone, Rural Conservation Zone)
Properties zoned and/or designated for future residential, industrial or commercial developments are not eligible under this program.
A maximum of $1500 is available for a property which could include one or a combination of the following:
- up to $1500 - for projects that protect remnant vegetation through erecting fencing to permanently exclude stock, including around dams
- up to $1000 - for revegetation, fencing around revegetation and nestboxes
- up to $500 - for environmental weed control within good quality remnant vegetation
We provide funding on a dollar-for-dollar basis so applicants must contribute labour and/or equivalent funds or materials to the amount they seek from us.
Labour can be considered as part of the landowner contribution and will be assessed at the rate of $30 per hour.
We do not fund projects retrospectively.
For our 2020 program, we will give priority to:
- projects that will protect and enhance Whittlesea’s remnant vegetation on private land, especially in areas identified as having significant habitat values as nominated in the NEROC Report ('Sites of Habitat and Faunal Significance in North East Melbourne' by Cam Beardsell, 1997. Contact us on 9217 2471 for further advice or click here to download a map of priority project areas)
- properties identified as being part of a habitat link as nominated in the NEROC Report where revegetation can link or strengthen habitat corridors
- properties that can display an ongoing commitment to good land management practices
- Complete an online application form by 30 November 2019
- All applications will be assessed on the degree to which they meet the Eligibility Criteria and Assessment Priorities.
- Applicants of eligible projects will be contacted in September-December 2019 to arrange a site inspection to discuss their project proposal.
- Successful applicants will be notified in late 2019/early 2020 and will be required to enter into a Project Agreement with the City of Whittlesea detailing works to be undertaken before receiving funds.
- For fencing and weed control projects, successful applicants will be provided with funding in early 2020. These funds must be spent by 30 September 2020 and be used only for the purposes stipulated in the Project Agreement. Successful applications will be expected to provide copies of receipts and other documentation on completion of the project.
- Materials for projects (e.g. plants, stakes, guards, nestboxes, erosion matting) will be purchased by Council and provided to landowners in autumn 2020.
- All project works must be completed by 30 September 2020.
- An inspection of the completed project will be undertaken with the applicant in 2020. Photographs will be taken by Council's Sustainable Land Management Officer which may be used in publications and advertising material.
- Past recipients are encouraged to apply for funding, however depending on the number of applications received, priority may be given to new applicants.
- Projects must be completed by September 30 2020 and therefore must be of a scale that can be realistically completed within that period.
- All fencing must be permanent in nature, including end and corner assemblies and exclude livestock to the satisfaction of Council. The use of barbed wire is not permitted due to the dangers posed to wildlife.
- Grant funding for fencing will be available on the following basis (the landowner will be expected to cover any remaining fencing costs):
- fencing of remnant vegetation (including paddock trees and around dams) will be at the rate of $10 per metre, up to a maximum amount of $1500 (i.e. 150 meters)
- fencing of revegetation works will be available at the rate of $7.50 per metre, up to a maximum amount of $1000 (i.e. 133 meters)
- All proposed plantings must be a minimum width of 10 metres, contain only indigenous species of local provenance, and include tree and understory species. The species lists for all projects will be developed in consultation with our Sustainable Land Management Officer and plants will be bulk ordered by Council.
- Environmental weed control will only be funded within areas of good quality native vegetation. Council will not fund the control of weeds declared under the CaLP Act or Council’s Local Law.
- The applicant may be required to repay the grant to Council if the project is not completed by 30 September 2020 or fails to meet the specified time schedule, or the completed project differs from the project detailed in the Project Agreement.
Sustainable Land Management Rebate Scheme
We provide eligible rural landowners with a rate rebate to encourage responsible land management.
Our Sustainable Land Management Rebate Scheme is an incentive to carry out and/or maintain land management works that will:
- improve the quality of land and water resources
- maintain or enhance local biodiversity
- address land degradation issues such as weeds, pest animals and erosion
*This scheme is currently closed for applications.
Our officers also offer rural property owners free on-site advice, and hold free land management field days throughout the year (advertised in the local press and community newsletters).