Leveraged Creative and Cultural Planning

Program guidelines

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The Leveraged Creative and Cultural Planning program supports regional local governments to work collaboratively to develop creative and cultural plans and implement activities. 

Regional local governments are encouraged to collaborate in the planning process in order to leverage investment and create more opportunities for meaningful arts and cultural development that supports job creation. This collaboration may take the form of a whole of region approach where a creative or cultural plan is developed for an entire region, or a smaller partnership between several local governments. 

Creative and cultural plans should align with local government Strategic Community Plans, promote the value of arts, culture and heritage and facilitate activities that foster the regional creative and cultural industries, including cultural tourism. In addition to supporting the development of new creative and cultural plans, the program also funds local governments to refresh and reframe their existing plans through collaborative engagement.

It is encouraged for creative and cultural plans to be developed in a collaborative process, however implementation of arts and cultural activities within the plans may be undertaken by individual local governments. This supports local governments to be responsive to the needs of particular communities while implementing activities which are underpinned by the relevant creative and cultural plan. 


Funding delivered through Leveraged Creative and Cultural Planning is intended to:

  • support the creation of co-designed creative and cultural plans for regional local governments, groups of regional local governments or regional zones in WA
  • ensure integration of creative and cultural plans with regional local government Strategic Community Plans
  • increase support for the development of the arts, cultural infrastructure, heritage and creative industries in regional WA
  • improve economic and jobs growth in regional communities
  • support activities that encourage cultural tourism opportunities and the creative and cultural industries
  • contribute to the vibrancy and social wellbeing of regional communities.

Funding categories

There are two funding categories within the Leveraged Creative and Cultural Planning program:

Plan category

The Plan category is for local governments who wish to develop a creative and cultural plan or revise an existing plan. Local governments that undertake collaboration with other local governments on the development of a creative and cultural plan will be highly regarded. It is recommended that the application is prepared and submitted by the local government that will take the lead in coordinating the project. 

  • Applicants must demonstrate that the relevant community groups, arts and cultural organisations and Regional Development Commission will be involved as key stakeholders in the project. 
  • The creative and cultural plan must align to the local governments' existing Strategic Community Development Plans.
  • Where relevant, the Cultural Infrastructure Toolkit should be used as a resource in the development of the creative and cultural plan.

If your project does not correspond in some way to any of the above, contact a Grants Officer for advice before starting an application.

Activity category

The Activity category applies to the implementation of arts and cultural activities identified within a published creative and cultural plan. Any local government specified within a published plan may be the applicant for this category. Local governments applying to the Activity category are encouraged to clearly demonstrate which stakeholders they will be partnering with to deliver the project (e.g. arts organisations, artists, community groups). 

If your project does not correspond in some way to any of the above, contact a Grants Officer  for advice before starting an application.

Who can apply?

Plan category 

Applications are open to regional local governments that are developing a new or revised creative and cultural plan. 

Applications that involve collaborations with multiple local government authorities will be highly regarded.   

Please note that, if successful, the local government who applied will be issued with the contract and is responsible for receiving payment and acquitting the grant. 

Activity category

Applications are open to regional local government authorities with published or existing creative and cultural plans.

What can I apply for?

Plan category:

Eligible applicants can apply for funding to support the costs associated with the development and delivery of a creative and cultural plan. This may include:

  • consultation activities such as workshops and community engagement
  • establishment of steering or reference groups
  • professional consultant fees
  • publishing and promotion
  • any of the above costs associated with the re-development of an existing plan to expand to a whole of region approach or collaboration between local governments.

Activity category

Eligible applicants can apply for funding to support the costs associated with the implementation of an identified activity within the developed creative and cultural plan. This may include:

  • activities that increase revenue and employment for regional artists and cultural workers
  • skills or professional development workshops and/or residencies for arts and cultural practitioners
  • the creation, production and/or public presentation of new works, exhibitions or events
  • cultural maintenance activities
  • working with communities to produce and/or present creative activities which increase community wellbeing
  • collaborations between organisations in the regional arts, creative and cultural sector.

How much can I apply for?

Plan category 

Eligible applicants can apply for up to $50,000 for the development and creation of a creative and cultural plan. This program may fund up to 80% of your total project cost. You must demonstrate at least 20% leveraged income from other sources.

The project must be completed within 12 months of receiving the funds. 

Activity category

Eligible applicants can apply for up to $25,000 for the implementation of a project or activity within a creative and cultural plan. This program may fund up to 80% of your total project cost. You must demonstrate at least 20% income from other sources. 

The project must be completed within 12 months of receiving the funds. 

What can’t I apply for?

  • International travel
  • purchase of capital equipment including instruments, equipment, software, computers, tablets (iPads) and/or uniforms
  • capital works such as construction or purchasing of studios, work spaces or gallery spaces
  • activities already funded by Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries’ culture and the arts grant programs
  • activities relating to radio broadcasting
  • display, restoration or conservation of cultural and/or historical material
  • costs of manufacturing and/or producing prototypes
  • fundraising, competitions, prizes and trophies
  • the work of State or Federal government departments
  • activity that will be academically assessed or any school curriculum-based activity
  • facsimiles, genealogical works and histories of local governments, clubs, districts and organisations
  • activities related to an individual’s membership in a national organisation
  • ongoing staffing costs
  • film and television activities such as:
    • the development or production of narrative shorts or features, pilots for television series, mainstream animation e.g. conventional character-based narrative cartoons
    • documentaries, including documentaries on the arts
    • screenwriting activities or script development for film and television
    • stand-alone documentation activities

What will make my application ineligible?

You will make your application ineligible if you:

  • do not adhere to support material limits and format requirements
  • do not adhere to budget requirements
  • start the activity before the eligible start date
  • submit an application late
  • exceed application limits
  • have any key personnel with an overdue acquittal
  • request funding that exceeds the funding cap of the program
  • apply for activity that is delivered as part of an educational institution’s curriculum or will be academically assessed 
  • are not a Western Australian regional local government.

When can I apply?

The key dates calendar has application opening and closing dates, activity start dates and draft review deadlines. 

You are encouraged to submit your application before your submission due date to ensure you have plenty of time.  

All times are in AWST (for Perth, Western Australia). 

Processing of grant payments to successful applicants will not start until the grant contract is signed and returned.  Depending on the activity start date, we cannot guarantee notification and/or availability of funding before the activity begins. 

How many times can I apply?

There are no limits to the number of applications you may make to this program, however you may only have one successful application per round. 

How do I apply?

Please apply using the Online Grants web portal.

More information on how to apply can be found in the application manual.

For your reference, the core application questions are required.

The key dates calendar has opening and closing dates, activity start dates and draft review deadlines.

How will my application be assessed?

Applications to this funding program are assessed by an assessment panel.

All applications are assessed against the 4 criteria:

  • Quality
  • Reach
  • Good planning
  • Financial responsibility

Each has a weighting and a subset of dimensions which can be found below.

More information about the dimensions and definitions which have been developed by artists and creatives representing their sector, can be found in the application manual.  You are not expected to address all dimensions and definitions, only those most relevant to your application.

Your activity must meet at least one of the objectives of the program to be successful. Assessors will consider your application against the relevant dimensions and allocate a weighted score against each of the 4 criteria.

See the application manual for more information about how your application will be assessed.

Final approval of successful applications depends on available budget and approval by the Minister or delegated authority.


Dimensions of quality

Imagination, authenticity, originality, inquisitiveness, excellence, captivation, relevance, innovation, challenge, risk and rigour.

Weighting 25%


Quality refers to the level of artistic or cultural significance of the activity. Quality may be demonstrated by, but not limited to; how the project meets the needs and aspirations of the relevant communities, examples of previous work, arts and culture sector support and a strong history in the artist’s practice. It is also demonstrated through the skills and experience of the people involved in the project, and the alignment of those skills and experience to deliver the project.


Dimensions of reach

Diversity, platform, collaboration, leverage, number and growth.

Weighting 25%


Reach refers to the level of impact the project is likely to have. Reach may be demonstrated by including information about the community influence and involvement in all aspects and stages of the project, number of participants, relevant marketing and promotional strategies. 

Good planning

Dimensions of good planning

Realistic, achievable, considered, demonstrated research and/or consultation, evaluation.

Weighting 25%


Good planning refers to the level of consideration which has been given to practically undertaking the project. Good planning can be demonstrated by, but not limited to: carefully considered preparation, confirmation of key personnel, a realistic timeline and achievable outcomes, documented research and/or consultation, and a process of evaluation.

Financial responsibility

Dimensions of financial responsibility

Value, comprehensive budget, financial self-sufficiency.

Weighting 25%


Financial responsibility refers to the sound management of the budget. Financial responsibility can be demonstrated by but is not limited to; efficient use of resources, reasonable expenses and an accurate and comprehensive budget. Other sources of income have been considered and included where appropriate. 

Four components of your application

There are 4 components of a grant application: core application questions, project outputs, financial information and support material. Each plays a significant and distinct role in creating a whole picture about your activity.

Core application questions

Your answers to the core application questions should give assessors a concise overview of your activity. Each question has a 1500-character limit. If you need more information on how to prepare your application, please read the application manual.

You can extract a copy of your draft application in Online Grants at any stage to share with others for their feedback.

Respond to the following questions with reference to the assessment criteria and program objectives:

Q1. What is the project you are seeking funding for?

Provide a summary of the project outlining the key elements involved in the project and identify if you are seeking funding in the Plan or Activity category. Outline why you have chosen to undertake this project and its relevance to the regional area/s. Use any key data or information available to support the reason for undertaking the project. 

Q2. Who are the stakeholders involved in your project?

Provide an outline of the stakeholders who will be involved in your project and what they will bring to the project. Clearly identify the local government/s working on the project as well as any other collaborators such as Regional Development Commissions, key arts and cultural organisations, community groups, advisory groups, artists and consultants. 

Further information will need to be provided in the support material by providing documents of support and participation.

Q3. What outcomes will be achieved through the development and delivery of the project? 

Outline the expected outcomes that will be achieved through the development and delivery of the project. Refer to how the outcomes of the project may impact the region and the communities of interest involved. 

Q4. What regional employment and professional development opportunities will be created? 

Describe any paid work that will be undertaken by regional people in the development and delivery of the project. This can include work by community engagement officers, consultants, arts organisations, artists/creatives and any other regional people whose employment directly relates to the project. Also describe any opportunities that will be provided to regional people for professional skills development as part of the project. 

Q5. How do you plan to engage and involve the community?

Describe how you will encourage participation or involvement in the project. Detail how you will promote the project to ensure genuine engagement from members of the regional community, including the arts and culture sector. 

Further information can be provided in the Support Material through a community engagement plan. 

Q6. How will you plan, manage and deliver the project?

Provide a summary of the key milestones in your project planning and delivery, the key stages of the project and who will be responsible.  

Further information can be provided in the support material through a project plan. 

Project outputs 

You are required to provide relevant project outputs. An output is a specific measurable thing that is generated by your project. This information will be considered as part of your application and provide further clarity about your project for the assessor. The outputs also provide important data for the department for research, analysis and advocacy purposes. 

You only need to provide outputs for the categories and items relevant to your project.  

If your application is successful, you will be required to report against your planned project outputs in your acquittal report. 

Please contact us if you have any questions.

Financial information

The financial information in your budget helps to demonstrate that all elements of your activity have been considered, thoroughly researched and costed. A good budget also provides confidence for the department that your activity will be a sound investment for the State of Western Australia.

You should indicate which expenditure items you want the department to support. List those items in the ‘Additional Notes’ section of the application budget page.

If you are registered for GST, you should not include GST in the budget figures. All amounts should be in Australian dollars.

Your funding request is the difference between your expenditure minus your income. To ensure this amount is calculated accurately, seek quotes for all expenditure items (whether or not you intend to include these as support material) and include all costs associated with the activity, even if they are supplied in-kind.

Many activities will include in-kind contributions in the form of offering something for free or at a discount. More information on in-kind expenditure and income as well as an example of how to demonstrate your in-kind support follows this section.

For each expenditure or income item you add to the budget, use the notes area alongside the item to explain how it relates to the delivery of your activity and how the cost was calculated. If relevant, include a breakdown or itemisation of costs.


Expenditure items can vary significantly from one activity to another. Any legitimate expense that is eligible can be included in the budget.

Do not duplicate costs in the budget form. For example, if you receive a quote for advertising which includes design, do not add an additional item for design. Simply use ‘advertising’ as the expenditure item, and add a note explaining that the cost includes design.

This program may fund up to 80% of your activity costs. You must demonstrate at least 20% income, or your application will be ineligible.

Examples of eligible expenditure items are listed below. Make sure you check ‘What Can’t I Apply For?’ for ineligible items.

Eligible expenditure items


Expenses related to the management and administration of the activity e.g. telephone/internet, insurance, postage and stationery. Eligible expenditure items in this category may also include audit costs and accessibility costs (expenditure associated with making your activity accessible to participants or audiences with a disability).

Marketing, promotion and distribution

Costs associated with marketing to your target audience e.g. information, promotion and audience engagement activities, advertising, graphic design, merchandise photography, videography, public relations and production of marketing collateral.

Preparation, development, production and exhibition/presentation

Costs related to the remount, production and delivery of the activity or its deliverables, including the costs of presentation and exhibition. Eligible items may include venue hire, lighting hire, set construction, manufacturing costs, recording fees, rehearsal space hire, props and audio-visual costs.

Salaries, fees and living allowances

Expenditure in this category should include salaries, fees and allowances for all key personnel, with separate components itemised in the budget notes. We support appropriate rates of pay for all people involved in your activity. Refer to the following websites for information on industry standard payment rates:

If these standards do not apply to your activity then you must outline how reasonable rates have been calculated. For long-term activities, it may be appropriate to pay artists a rate based on a yearly salary for a similar kind of work. If this is the case, you need to clearly explain the rationale for the pay rate in your budget notes. 

All rates should be relative to level of experience.

Please note that organisations, such as Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, predominantly provide information on minimum base rates for employees engaged on a full-time, part-time or casual basis. Rates for artists and arts workers engaged as contractors will include a loading to cover the costs of being self-employed. Full-time, part-time and casual rates do not factor in these costs and should not be used when engaging contractors.

Travel and freight

Costs associated with transporting people, equipment or goods. Eligible items may include fares (taxi, airplane, bus etc.), tolls, land or air freight, and vehicle hire.


This program does not fund 100% of your activity costs. You must demonstrate at least 20% leveraged income or your application will be ineligible.  

Eligible income Items

Earned income

May include ticket sales, product sales, performance fees and merchandise sales. For performances, this amount should factor in the number of performances, average ticket price and projected venue capacity.

Corporate sponsorship

List any income received through sponsorship from corporate bodies or businesses. Income received through government sponsorship should be included in the relevant government income category.

Philanthropic donations

May include contributions from fundraising, crowdfunding, donations, gifts and bequests.

Australia Council, other Federal Government, other State Government, local government

All grants and sponsorship being sought from Local, State and Federal government, the Australia Council, and other government sources must be included, whether or not this support has been confirmed. If your application is to be assessed by an assessment panel, we will attempt to confirm the status of any pending funding applications directly with the funding body prior to the panel assessment. Do not include DLGSC grant funds being requested as part of this application.

Other income

If you are making a cash contribution, or someone is providing cash to the activity, list this item as a ‘cash contribution’ or similar. Include any other income source that does not fit within any of the above categories and provide enough detail to identify the income source.

In-kind expenditure and income

Some expenses may be offered to you for free or at a discount. This might be borrowed equipment, the use of a rehearsal space, donated or discounted goods or services, volunteers (including yourself), negotiated discounted fees and allowances. Anything given to your project at no expense to you is considered in-kind.

All in-kind expenditure must be included as a budget item under the in-kind expenditure category. The corresponding recognition of in-kind income is created automatically in your online application, and you do not need to enter any in-kind income budget items. The total in-kind expenditure must always equal the total in-kind income.

If, for example, you are hiring a venue, which would normally charge $2000, and you have successfully negotiated an $800 (40%) discount, you would include venue hire fee as a budget item under the expenditure category of $1200 and $800 under the in-kind expenditure category.

Additional notes

This section of the budget provides an opportunity for you to detail any additional information you feel may help to clarify items within your budget. For example, for fees and salaries you can indicate in this section how you calculated your amount.

You should use this section to indicate which expenditure items you want the department to support.


The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) considers any grant payment to be taxable income for the purposes of your annual income tax return. If you receive a grant you are encouraged to discuss your tax implications with your tax agent or the ATO.

Registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST)

If you are registered for GST you must show your expenditure items exclusive of the GST component. For example, you have been quoted $550 including GST for lighting hire. In your expenditure budget you would only show lighting hire of $500.

If you are registered for GST and your activity is funded, the department payment will include a 10% GST component to cover those items on which GST is payable.

Not registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST)

If you are not registered for GST you must show your expenditure items inclusive of the GST component. For example, you have been quoted $550 including GST for lighting hire. In your expenditure budget you would show lighting hire of $550.

If you are not registered for GST and your activity is funded, the department payment will include the GST component for those items on which GST is payable.

Support material

Support materials are crucial to a successful application and are essential for assessors to fully gauge the value of your activity.

It is highly recommended you pay close attention to the support material you choose to make sure it offers the best support for your application. Your choice of support material should help to demonstrate the four assessment criteria: Quality, Reach, Good Planning and Financial Responsibility as well as the objectives of the program.

There are 6 units of support material available. It is expected applicants will make use of the support material units which best support their application. All units may be used. 

Within each unit there are acceptable formats and limits. You must strictly adhere to these formats and limits or your application will be ineligible. 

Formats that are NOT eligible are: .pages, .zip, .excel, MP3s and .eml (screenshots of emails are accepted).

As an Online Grants portal user, you must upload your support materials with your online application.

If you are submitting audio and/or video files you must upload them to file streaming sites like Vimeo, YouTube, Bandcamp or SoundCloud that do not require a log-in to access.

Do not use Dropbox for any support material.

You can find instructions on how to use these sites at the following links:

More information about how to submit your materials can be found in the application manual.

The Supplier Creation Form (if required) does not count towards your support material limits, however, if required, it must be submitted with your support materials.

Online submission of support materials is preferred however we do accept posted materials. If you need to submit by post, please contact us to discuss your options.

Units of support material

Unit 1 Documents of support or participation – Mandatory

Documents of support such as letters from all local governments involved, partners, industry, arts and cultural practitioners, key community groups, cultural organisations and institutions. 

    Acceptable formats and limits
    • Maximum 30 A4 pages (One PDF only, 5MB max per file)

    Unit 2 Artistic/creative materials – Optional (if relevant)

    Artistic/creative materials relevant to your project. May include materials from previous work, or materials to be further developed for this project.

    Acceptable formats and limits

    Select up to 3 of the following:

    • Maximum 10 A4 pages of text (PDF or Word maximum file size 5 MB per document) 
    • Maximum 10 images (either one PDF document containing up to 10 images maximum file size 5 MB OR 10 image files maximum file size 5 MB per image)
    • Maximum 6 minutes of audio (3 web links max)*
    • Maximum 6 minutes of video (3 web links max)*.

    *All audio and video must be submitted as weblinks online. If your video or audio files are longer than 6 minutes in total, you must specify the exact ‘minute markers’ the assessor should start and finish viewing. Links to text or images online are not accepted.

    All text must be legible at 100% (10pt min). If text is not legible the assessors will be unable to review the document. 

    Unit 3 Project plan - Mandatory

    A project plan outlining the proposed development and delivery of the project.

    Acceptable formats and limits
    • Maximum 10 A4 pages (One PDF only, 5MB max per file).

    Unit 4  Community engagement plan - Mandatory

    A plan outlining the proposed community engagement components and strategies for development and/or delivery of the project.

    Acceptable formats and limits
    • Maximum 10 A4 pages of text in a Word or PDF document only (maximum file size 5 MB).

    Unit 5 Quotes – Mandatory

    A plan document highlighting the most relevant major expenditure items/confirmation of fees listed in your budget.

    Acceptable formats and limits
    • Maximum 5 A4 pages of text in a Word or PDF document only (maximum file size 5 MB).

    Can include emails as screenshots, converted to PDF. For quotes, you can take a screen shot or snip of the essential information and paste on to an A4 page. Links to text and/or images online are not accepted.

    All text must be legible at 100%. If text is not legible the assessors will be unable to review this document. 

    Unit 6 Evidence of risk assessment and planning – Optional (if relevant)

    Evidence of any risks identified in your project as a result of COVID-19 and how you plan to mitigate these risks. You may also wish to provide information on alternative plans should your proposed project or activity be impacted. 

    For example, consider including a risk management statement or plan if your project includes activities which are impacted by, or could be impacted by, public heath restrictions, such as public gatherings. 

    Acceptable formats and limits
    • Maximum 5 A4 pages in a Word or PDF document only (maximum file size 5MB).

    Draft review

    Applicants to Leveraged Creative and Cultural Planning can request a draft review when the application is complete. Check the key dates calendar for the draft review deadline date. 

    You can request a draft review any time before the draft review request deadline. Only one request for review can be submitted per application. 

    You are strongly encouraged to make your draft review request well before the deadline to give staff sufficient time to provide quality feedback and for you to then update your application. You will be unable to request a review after the deadline has been passed. 

    Contact onlinegrantsupportca@dlgsc.wa.gov.au if you require assistance requesting a draft review in Online Grants.

    Acquittal report

    If you’re successful you will be required to fill in an acquittal report when your activity has finished. An acquittal report details your activity and how you spent the grant. The acquittal report will be available for you to access in Online Grants once a copy of your signed funding agreement has been received. 

    Your acquittal report must be submitted within 90 days of the activity completion date as specified in the funding agreement.

    You will need to attach relevant documents, images and videos that substantiate the delivery of the activity and that may demonstrate the impact and outcomes achieved. 

    The report will also include your activity budget and you will be required to enter all the actual figures against each budget item and add any additional items not in the original budget. Variations between budget and actual figures are acceptable; however, you must provide an explanation for large variations in the Notes for that item. As you enter actual figures, the activity profit/loss will be automatically updated and displayed at the top of the Financial Information page. 

    The funding acquittal report also includes the option to provide feedback to help us to continually review and improve the service we provide.

    Assistance for applicants

    More information on how to apply can be found in the application manual.

    Project officers are available via telephone and email to answer queries about applications and suitability of activities to specific programs.

    If you need extra assistance due to disability, language barriers or any other factor that may disadvantage you in completing your application, please contact us.

    The advice provided by project officers does not guarantee the success of your application.

    Due to the high number of applications received, each funding round is highly competitive.

    All applications are considered on their own merits and against the assessment criteria and program objectives.

    Contact us

    Online Grants portal technical support

    For assistance using Online Grants or to report any related technical issues, contact the Online Grants Support Team: onlinegrantsupportca@dlgsc.wa.gov.au

    Project officers

    For enquiries relating to this funding program, including advice or assistance with your application, contact a project officer:
    Telephone 61 8 6552 7400
    Toll Free (Country WA callers only) 1800 634 541
    Email grantsprogramsca@dlgsc.wa.gov.au

    Assistance for people with disability

    The department is committed to supporting applicants with disability. Information can be provided in alternative formats (large print, electronic or Braille) upon request.

    If you require special assistance in preparing your application, please call 61 8 6552 7400 or toll free for regional WA callers on 1800 634 541.

    Family, friends, mentors and/or carers can attend meetings with you.

    If you are deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment, contact us through one of the following:

    Interpreting assistance

    For interpreting assistance in languages other than English, telephone the Translation and Interpreting Service on 13 14 50 and ask for a connection to 6552 7400 or 1800 634 541.

    Regional applicants

    Toll Free (Country WA callers only): 1800 634 541.

    Email the project officers: grantsprogramsca@dlgsc.wa.gov.au

    Page reviewed 22 November 2022