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Update on COVID-19- The safety of our communities, customers and staff is our top priority. We are continuing to monitor daily developments in response to COVID-19. Find out the latest.

Financial Assistance

Council provides financial assistance to its community in a variety of ways, supporting a diverse range of services and projects that directly benefit the community. Primarily, this is done through grants, sponsorships and small donations. Council also has specific loans and rates donation policies. For more information, click on the links below.

Council recognises that, at times, residents may experience genuine financial hardship and people are to be treated with respect and compassion when considering their circumstances. With this in mind, Council has processes to assist with the recovery of monies that become overdue for rates, fees, charges and other debts.

Information on the different types of financial assistance Council offers is outlined below. Visit our grants and scholarships page for information on the different types of community grants and scholarships available.

Financial hardship

To help our community and businesses through the unprecedented effects of COVID-19, we are making it easier to access our existing financial hardship relief for ratepayers, tenants and holiday van owners. To apply for financial hardship, fill out our online form and a member of our friendly staff will be in touch to discuss your options.

  • Read more about the Debt Recovery and Hardship Policy on our Policies page.


Sponsorships are business agreements between organisations and Council in which Council receives benefit equal to the value of the sponsorship. These benefits may include promotion, marketing and or tickets to an event.


Community Capacity Building Fund

The Community Capacity Building Fund is for special projects (excluding events) that provide specific benefits to the community of Port Stephens.  Grants are not competitive, have a maximum funding amount of $10,000 and are determined by Council after completion of an application.

Rapid Response

Funding provides the ability for a councilor to assist the community with a monetary donation of value up to $500.

Mayoral Fund

Funding is made available at the discretion of the Mayor under this Mayoral Fund.

Other fund sources

  • View the Financial Assistance for the Disposal of Waste Policy on our Policies page.
  • View the Rate Donations for Community Groups Policy on our Policies page. The Rate Donations for Community Groups Policy provides guidelines for donation of rates and charges to eligible rateable community groups. To provide financial assistance for community groups that are unable to meet the cost of rates and charges.