Crown land managers and community groups that use Crown land are invited to apply for a share of $17 million in grants from the NSW Government to upgrade and maintain community facilities and public reserves.

Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey said statewide applications for the NSW Government’s Crown Reserves Improvement Fund are now open.

“Crown reserves play a critical role by protecting the environment and providing green open spaces for parks, ovals, walking, cycling and sports and recreation activities to keep communities healthy and happy,” Mrs Pavey said.

“They also provide affordable and secure land for a wide range of community-focused organisations including surf life-saving clubs, scouts and girl guide groups, the RSPCA, PCYC and State Emergency Services, among others.

“Grants are on offer to support projects on Crown reserves that can deliver social, environmental, cultural and economic benefits to local communities.”

Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Rob Stokes said grants are open to all local councils and community organisations, groups and trusts that manage and use Crown land reserves across NSW including showgrounds.

“Grants are available to maintain and develop recreational and tourism facilities on public reserves for community use and enjoyment,” Minister Stokes said.

“Community organisations and trusts can apply for full grants to cover the cost of maintenance and upgrade projects on reserves they use and manage.

“Funding is also available for bushfire, weed and pest management to ensure we have safe and functional public reserves that protect our native plants and animals.”

This year’s fund aims to build resilience and assist communities recover from adverse events like bushfires, floods, drought and COVID-19.

Mrs Pavey said another focus this year will be to support projects that contribute to greater energy and water efficiency by encouraging the use of renewable energy and water saving technologies, and environmentally sustainable practices to reduce emissions.

“We are also focusing on projects that can support Aboriginal communities and interests through co-management of Crown land, and greater recognition and education on Indigenous cultural heritage.”

Grant applications are open until 25 June 2021. For further information and to apply visit https://reservemanager.crownland.nsw.gov.au/funding/crif