Applications close at 4.00pm on Friday 20 July 2018. Late applications will not be accepted.

Eligibility

What do you define as infrastructure?

For the purposes of this program, infrastructure refers to the equipment, materials and physical installation works involved with a project. It excludes items such as project management, design costs, community consultation, evaluation, legal and administrative costs, planning permits or fees, camera licences and audit services. The Department of Justice and Regulation (the department) will not fund recurrent infrastructure costs including camera monitoring for Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) projects, and ongoing asset maintenance.

Can we apply for more than one project?

Yes, more than one application can be submitted. Councils may apply on their own behalf, and on behalf of community organisations that own or manage facilities that are widely used and freely accessible to all members of the local community. However, applications for CCTV will only be considered for public spaces and only where a council confirms it is responsible for owning, managing and maintaining the CCTV system, and access to CCTV storage systems and footage is limited to council staff and/or Victoria Police.

Can we submit an application that includes a number of separate sites?

Yes, where you are proposing the same type of project across a number of sites, for example a lighting initiative – you must address the criteria, provide specific details and provide a breakdown of costs for each site. The department may only wish to fund particular project sites and if the costs for those sites cannot be separated from the other sites proposed, the department may decide not to fund your project.

If you are proposing different types of projects across sites, for example a CCTV initiative in one location and an environmental design project in another, you should submit separate applications for each site.

Can we partner with other organisations to implement a project?

Yes, projects involving partnerships between organisations are encouraged. If this is your intention, please include a list of partners and their responsibilities in your application under Assessment Criteria 4.

Community organisations wishing to propose applications for public safety security infrastructure should contact their local council to discuss their ideas and potentially develop an application. In this situation, council will be the applicant and will take full responsibility for managing and delivering the project, and reporting, acquitting and evaluating the project to fulfil financial and legal requirements.

Community partner responsibilities should be clearly understood by each of the partners. Listing and agreeing to the respective responsibilities, expectations and limitations of each partner will help ensure that everyone is clear about what each partner can do, should do and should not do. Letters of support from key partners clearly outlining their role in the project should be attached to your application.

Can we apply for funding for CCTV systems?

Yes, applications for CCTV projects are eligible, although mobile CCTV systems will not be funded. To be eligible for funding, the proposed CCTV system must be focused on a public place. Refer to the Grant Guidelines for further information on CCTV requirements and assessment criteria.

The department encourages projects that form part of an integrated mix of crime prevention activities. Council should explain how the CCTV project will complement other crime prevention activities within the identified area.

There are significant issues for councils to consider in planning and implementing a CCTV project. The department strongly advises councils to review all of the resources relating to CCTV projects available on the Community Crime Prevention website (External link) before applying for funding for a CCTV project.

The Guide to developing CCTV for public safety in Victoria outlines a range of steps that councils should consider, which commences with ensuring a thorough understanding of the specific crime prevention problem or issue to determine whether CCTV is an appropriate response.

Other important resources include the Victorian Ombudsman’s Closed Circuit Television in Public Place Guidelines, the Commissioner for Privacy and Data Protection’s Guidelines to Surveillance and privacy in the Victorian Public Sector, (External link) 2017 and Victoria Police’s CCTV policy.

Presentations are also available on the Community Crime Prevention website (External link) from previous forums that may be of assistance. These include presentations from the Privacy and Data Protection Commissioner, Victoria Police, a CCTV technical expert, and councils who have implemented CCTV projects. Refer to crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/resources/cctv (External link) for further information.

Will replacement CCTV cameras be funded?

Replacement or camera upgrades are eligible for funding, however value for money is a key consideration for funding under the program.

The value-for-money assessment will include consideration of any proposed additional functionality, the length of time cameras have been in operation, whether cameras have been properly maintained, and whether there is clear evidence that the CCTV system has been appropriately managed. This includes evidence that the system has been evaluated, including demonstrating the extent of its use and impact, and is appropriately managed through regular reviews and audits. Generally, it would be expected that replacement cameras would not be funded within seven years of initial installation.

Can community groups apply for funding?

Community groups cannot directly apply for funding. However, community organisations that wish to propose applications for public safety security infrastructure should contact their local council to discuss their ideas and potentially develop an application.

Please note that the sites or areas to be worked on must be widely used and freely accessible to all members of the local community in order to be eligible for funding.

If council agrees to submit an application to implement a community group proposal, this means that council will be the applicant, and will take full legal and financial responsibility for managing, delivering, reporting on, acquitting and evaluating the project (these tasks cannot be passed on to the community group). Grant funds will be paid directly to the council.

Local council contact details are available via knowyourcouncil.vic.gov.au/councils (External link)

Providing evidence

What evidence is required to show that a project is needed?

Clearly describe the crime prevention issue your project will address and provide evidence that is specific to the project location. It strengthens an application to substantiate the evidence by attaching copies of relevant documents. Evidence could include, but is not limited to:

  • community safety audits, such as Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) audits
  • survey or community engagement results
  • council reports
  • feasibility studies or consultancy reports
  • local demographic information relating to an emerging issue
  • council information (e.g. the number of complaints about an issue, work logs or maintenance records)
  • photographs
  • information from Victoria Police (External link) and the Crime Statistics Agency (External link).

For CCTV projects, it is a mandatory requirement to provide a letter of support from Victoria Police (refer to the assessment criteria in the Grant Guidelines for specific details).

What evidence can we provide about our ability to deliver the project?

The funding process is competitive and the department requires that councils deliver what they propose in their application, within the timeframes set out in the project plan.

The department will look for a clear project management approach evidenced by a detailed project plan, clear budget and evidenced costings. Applications should demonstrate careful consideration about the delivery of the project and what is required, include realistic timeframes, and consider risks and contingencies.

If we have a project partner, what information should we provide about them?

If you have project partners, describe their role and how they will contribute to the project.

Project budget

We would like to combine Public Safety Infrastructure Fund grants funding with funding from another program to deliver a project. Is this possible?

Yes, your project can include other funding sources. Please note that other State Government funding sources cannot be included as part of the minimum co-contribution to the project.

Can we use the grant funding to cover project management costs?

No. Grant funding requested must be for the cost of infrastructure only. However, project management costs can be included in the budget as part of your organisation’s co-contribution.

Project management is generally expected to be up to 7.5 per cent of the total project cost. If project management costs are higher, this should be justified within the application and will be considered as part of the merit assessment.

Do we need to provide a quote or cost estimate?

While a quote may be possible for smaller projects, it is understood this is not applicable for larger projects where future tender arrangements may be proposed. However, the department expects that projects deliver what they propose if they are successful in receiving funding. Providing an evidence base for the proposed costing estimate will support the assessment of project viability.

Do you have any tips for completing the budget?

Yes, here are some tips:

  • the total project income must equal the total project expenditure
  • the budget needs to include all contributions (including the grant you are requesting) and key expenditure items related to the project
  • ensure that you have included the minimum co-contribution outlined in the guidelines. Please note the minimum co-contribution is a proportion of the total project cost, not the amount of grant funding sought
  • ensure you clearly indicate the expenditure items to be funded by the requested grant, and differentiate these from the items to be funded by your organisation’s co-contribution
  • identify project income from various sources as confirmed or unconfirmed. Note that if funding is not confirmed from another source, this will be considered in assessing the viability of the project
  • be accurate in your costings – you cannot ask for additional funds later because the project was not accurately costed at the start
  • only include income or expenditure items relevant to the project. If the cost is not directly associated with your project, it should not be in the project budget
  • do not include non-infrastructure related costs as part of your grant request, as these items are ineligible and may result in your entire project being deemed ineligible (these costs can be included as part of your organisational co-contribution)
  • do not include GST in your budget. Ensure the funding requested and budget are GST exclusive. Any grant payment you receive will add and include GST.

Submitting an application

I haven’t used an online application before. What help is available for me?

The department is using an online application system to accept grant applications for the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund grants. When you click the ‘Apply now’ link on the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund webpage (External link), you will be directed to a page where you will need to register to use the SmartyGrants system.

The application form is easy to complete. An online manual (with instructions and pictures) is available to guide you through the application process. If you experience any technical difficulties while writing, saving or submitting your application, please contact SmartyGrants Support by phone (03) 9320 6888 or email service@smartygrants.com.au (External link)

How do I spell check or format my response in SmartyGrants?

Most internet browsers (including Firefox v2.0 and above; Safari; and Google Chrome) have spell checking facilities built in – you can switch this function on or off by adjusting your browser settings.

If formatting is required, you can manually insert bullet points by using characters such as ‘*’ to create lists, etc. Please don't copy and paste text formatting into the application from Microsoft Word as this can disrupt the way that your application displays.

Application writing tips

Respond fully to each selection criteria within the application form, being sure that you:

  • clearly articulate and provide evidence of the crime prevention issue in your local community
  • demonstrate linkages between your project and broader community safety plans, council strategic plans and other relevant plans
  • ensure you have worked out and are clear about the scope of your project
  • explain why the proposed solution is the best way of addressing the problem (providing evidence wherever possible) including consideration of alternative responses
  • explain the crime prevention and community benefits of your project
  • be sure you have thought about and clearly communicated how you will monitor, assess and measure the impact of the project
  • include relevant attachments (e.g. map of proposed CCTV locations).

Grant application outcomes

When will we find out if our application is successful?

It is anticipated that outcomes will be advised within three months of the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund grants closing date, however this will depend on the number of applications received. You should consider this timeframe when developing your project plan.

Will we be given feedback if our application is unsuccessful?

Unsuccessful applicants will receive a letter advising them of the outcome of their application as well as contact details if you wish to seek feedback.

Further assistance

Who can we speak with to obtain advice on our application?

To ensure a fair and equitable approach for all councils, the Community Crime Prevention Unit is not able to provide individual application development support, but may be able to provide information on whether your project idea is eligible for funding.

Information to assist you in preparing your application; including the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund guidelines, fact sheets, featured projects, a summary list of all previously funded projects and a sample funding agreement are available at www.crimeprevention.vic.gov.au/safetygrants. Councils are strongly encouraged to view this material when considering an application.

Please note, the Community Crime Prevention Unit will not be running an Information Forum on the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund grants this year. Video presentations from previous forums are available on our website (External link) and YouTube channel (External link).

If you have any general questions after reading the resources, either phone the Grants Information Line on 1300 221 249 from 8:30am to 5:00pm weekdays, for the cost of a local call, or email the Community Crime Prevention Unit at psifgrants@justice.vic.gov.au (External link)

If you experience technical difficulties while writing, saving or submitting your application, please contact SmartyGrants support by phone (03) 9320 6888 or email: service@smartygrants.com.au (External link)

Author
Community Crime Prevention Unit
Publisher
Department of Justice and Regulation

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