Barnaby Joyce announces Extra $250 million in sixth round of Building Better Regions Fund grants

Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce. Picture: Sitthixay Ditthavong
Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce. Picture: Sitthixay Ditthavong

The federal government has announced an extra $250 million for a controversial grants program, as an upcoming election looms.

There is no theme for the sixth and final round of the Building Better Regions Fund, but organisations within regional communities can apply for grants.

Projects will be funded under two streams.

The Infrastructure Projects Stream supports the construction or upgrade of infrastructure.

While the Community Investments Stream funds community development activities such as new or expanded local events, strategic regional plans, leadership and capability building activities.

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Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce said the funding would help regional communities recover from the pandemic.

"Backing regional communities will help secure our economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic while ensuring regional Australians can get ahead," Mr Joyce said.

"Our government is committed to delivering the best outcomes for regional and remote Australia, which is why we are continuing to support the businesses and people who call regional Australia home."

The government said the previous funding round - valued at $300 million - went to 298 projects across the country, including sporting precincts, community hall upgrades, art trails and upgrades to regional water supplies.

The government has previously been accused of using the regional grants program for pork barrelling.

The Labor Party said the analysis found that Coalition seats were awarded $218 million, or 72.7 per cent, of the total funding.

Postcodes classified as major city areas represented 27 per cent of the total value of the grants, and 37 per cent was awarded to inner regional areas.

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This story Govt announces extra $250 million for regional grants fund first appeared on The Canberra Times.