$1 million to help Vincent's most vulnerable

Published on Tuesday, 31 March 2020 at 3:40:44 PM

The City of Vincent will distribute up to $1 million to charities to urgently help vulnerable community members who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The money will be drawn from the purpose-specific Leederville Gardens Trust and will be directed at charities that focus on seniors, disability support, mental health and homelessness.

As trustee, the City is calling for proposals from Public Benevolent Institutions (PBIs) to urgently help vulnerable residents who are experiencing hardship because of COVID-19.

“COVID-19 and physical distancing measures are already having deeply felt impacts on the most vulnerable members of our community – particularly our seniors,” said Mayor Emma Cole.

“This pandemic is a once in a lifetime event and it requires a response of equal significance.

“This money will help our residents who are most at risk cope with this crisis. We are taking expressions of interest from registered PBIs that are active in Vincent and we are working within the strict parameters of the purpose-specific trust fund. This is a vital resource at this time and there has never been a greater need.”

In 1991, an association was formed to develop and manage a retirement complex that became known as the Leederville Gardens Retirement Village. The project was benevolent in nature and surplus cash was transferred to the City to be held on trust and distributed to PBIs. Up to $1 million will be available in the first round of grants and further grant rounds may be considered.

The initiative was approved by Council at a special meeting held via video conference last night.

For more information or to submit an expression of interest, visit vincent.wa.gov.au/EOI

COVID-19 Urgent Relief Measures

Council also approved a range of urgent relief measures to support the community and small
businesses impacted by COVID-19. This includes:

  • 2020/21 budget prepared on assumption of a zero increase in rates, fees and charges.
  • A buy local promotional campaign to support small business.
  • Changes to car parking to support take away and home delivery services.
  • Waiver of interest on all outstanding rates and a suspension of new debt collection.
  • Development approval exemptions for change of use.
  • Refunds on cancelled bookings at City-owned properties or facilities.
  • Bringing forward planned asset maintenance programs.
  • Consideration of impacts of COVID-19 on City debtors.
  • Fortnightly payment of creditors.
  • Arts relief using developer contributions cash-in-lieu funds from Percent for Art policy.
  • Deferral of the City’s major FOGO third bin project until 2021.
  • Express planning services for development applications to allow businesses to operate
  • in a modified format.
  • Extending the Beaufort Street change of use exemption trial.
  • An amnesty on delivery and operating hour requirements under existing approvals.
  • Rent abatement in City-owned tenancies for small community groups.

COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Strategy

Council endorsed the City’s COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Strategy and Implementation Plan, which will guide recovery efforts over the short, medium and long term. It is a live document that will evolve and be continuously updated throughout the relief and recovery effort.

Phase one involves re-prioritising the City’s existing services, programs and projects, understanding the impact on the current budget and accessing all available resources.

Phase two focuses on adapting to the impacts off COVID-19, including adapting a significantly impacted 2020/21 budget towards recovery, restoring services and access to community facilities, dealing with financial hardship and new community building and connection initiatives.

Phase three will consider long-term actions, including supporting economic rebound and social reconnection.

COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Committee

A three-Council member COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Committee has been formed to oversee the strategy and provide rapid and agile decision making.

The committee will hold publically streamed, remote meetings at least weekly over the next six months and will have the power to make urgent decisions in response to the pandemic.

This includes approving the distribution of Leederville Gardens Trust funds, as well as awarding tenders over $250,000, selling or leasing property, waiving fees and approving urgent planning applications to help local businesses and the community address COVID-19.

More Information

City of Vincent | COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 Relief Funds EOI

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