COVID-19 Business Support Grants

Local businesses have been given the opportunity to apply for a share in Baw Baw Shire Council’s $100,000 Business Grant Program developed to support businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Funding has been fully allocated and grant applications are now closed.

Funding Streams

Funding is available for projects and activities in four streams:

Funding Stream One: Online Support

Up to $5,000 for costs associated with online and e-commerce activities, including the purchase of hardware, software and services in any of the following areas:

  • Website design and development
  • E-commerce platforms (selling online and receiving payments)
  • Online content development (web pages, mobile apps, audio and visual media)
  • Mentoring and training in online and e-commerce activities 

Funding Stream Two: Infrastructure and Equipment

Up to $5,000 for costs associated with temporary infrastructure used to continue to produce income throughout the impacts of COVID-19 including any of the following areas:

  • Equipment
  • Physical alterations including temporary structures and barriers
  • Business fittings, including retail wholesale and hospitality shop fittings 

Funding Stream Three: Marketing Support

Up to $2,000 for costs associated with marketing activities undertaken used to continue to produce income throughout the impacts of COVID-19 including any of the following areas:

  • Signage
  • Digital marketing and promotion
  • Printing and marketing activities 

Funding Stream Four: Employee Development

Up to $2,000 for costs associated with increasing and enhancing worker capability to better prepare return to business activities. Suitable professional activities can include, but are not limited to:

  • Online learning, webinars
  • Attendance at training courses, seminars, workshops, forums or conferences
  • Accredited training
  • In-house courses delivered by an external provider or other training 

This funding applies to projects and activities undertaken after mandatory closures to businesses were implemented in Victoria (22 March 2020) and activities to be undertaken within six months of this date. 

Successful grant applications will be capped at $2,000 and $5,000 respectively. Applicants are required to demonstrate the actual costs incurred and Baw Baw Shire Council will make funding assessments based on these up to the threshold.

Applications open 15 May 2020 and will be received up until 15 November 2020 or unless all funds are dispensed prior.   



Eligibility Criteria

Grant applicants must fulfill the following criteria to be eligible for funding:

  • Have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • Be located within Baw Baw Shire
  • Have been impacted by mandatory closures of premises,changes to their operations or can demonstrate a 75% reduction in income (this can be provided through business activity statements or other appropriate documentation)
  • Eligible business types include:
    • Accommodation
    • Food and Beverage Services
    • Administrative and Support Services
    • Arts and Recreation Services
    • Hair, Beauty and other Personal Services
    • Retail
    • Rental, Hiring and Real Estate
  • Eligible businesses must employ fewer than 50 FTE employees at the time of application. (In exceptional circumstances applications above this number of employees may be considered.)
  • Only projects and activities undertaken after 22 March 2020 will be eligible for grant support.
  • For all future works, you must provide a minimum of one quotation from a business based in Baw Baw Shire unless it can be reasonably demonstrated that local suppliers and/or services are not available.
  • Applicants must provide evidence of payment, supplier and completion of works for all retrospective activities. Local suppliers are preferred, however, applications will be accepted if it can be reasonably demonstrated that local suppliers and/or services are not available.
  • Activities must exceed $500.
  • Only one application per business is permitted, however combined works undertaken will be permitted provided they are from the same stream. For example, new signage for the business, and a digital marketing campaign to support the delivery can both be applied for in one application under Stream Three.
  • Only one successful application is permitted per eligible business.
  • Successful grant applications will be capped at $2,000 (Stream 3 & 4) and $5,000 (Stream 1 & 2) respectively.

What will not be funded

The following will not be funded under this grants program: 

  • Projects and activities more suitable for funding by another level of Government or agency.
  • Projects or activities that were completed before 22 March 2020.
  • Ongoing staff salaries or operating costs such as rates, rent or utilities.
  • Applications for the same project made to multiple streams of funding.
  • Projects that do not adhere to any COVID-19 restrictions imposed by the State or Federal Governments.
  • Personal protective equipment, including gloves, hand sanitisers, cleaning supplies, etc.
  • Purchase of products and goods for sale.
  • Activities or purchases that are considered business as usual for the business prior to COVID-19.

Assessment of Applications

Applications will be checked for eligibility and reviewed and assessed internally by relevant Council Officers.

All eligible applications will be assessed against how they:

  • Meet program guidelines.
  • Demonstrate the grant will help support business in response to the impact of COVID-19.
  • Respond based on circumstance and business type.
  • Are likely to meet timelines.

Priority will be given to the date and time applications are received.


Given the urgent nature of support required, Council will treat these applications as a priority and expects the assessment process to move quickly.

Projects that have not previously been undertaken are expected to take place as funds are received with all work to be completed with two months of the project start date, unless extension granted in writing.

Funds Disbursement

All successful applicants will be required to complete a Funds Disbursement form on SmartyGrants prior to funds being released. This includes a Funding Deed, an acknowledgement and declaration form, submitting a tax invoice from your organisation for the grant amount awarded and supplier application (if applicable).

The Funding Deed is an agreement between the organisation and Baw Baw Shire Council and provides details about the terms and conditions of funding. This will include implementation, data collection and reporting requirements specific to the application.

Project Acquittal

The Project Acquittal is the final stage in the grant process. The Applicant will need to provide information and evidence relevant to the project scope as outlined in the Funding Deed. This project acquittal must be completed within one month of the project completing. (Please note, this does not apply to retrospective works.)

Council may promote the program and its recipients’ experiences. Recipients will be asked to consent to Council using non-confidential information in public forums, including but not limited to web, Council Meetings, social media and media releases.

If any information in an application is found to be false or misleading, or grants are not applied for the purposes of the business in accordance with the terms of funding set out in these guidelines and attached application, the grant will be repayable on demand.