Funding and subsidies

Distribution of funding for projects and subsidies for NSW councils

Under the terms of the Library Act 1939 and the Library Regulation 2010 the State Library of NSW administers funding to NSW public libraries on an annual basis.
This page outlines the distribution of the funding for projects and subsidies for NSW councils.

As announced in the State Budget on 21 June 2016, the  public library funding  managed by the State Library has been increased by $2,100,000 over a two year period. 

The Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts the Hon Troy Grant has approved the Library Council of NSW’s recommendation for the distribution of funding for 2016/17.

All NSW councils that operate public libraries in accordance with the Library Act 1939 are eligible to apply for subsidies, please see FileSubsidy 2016/17 for the approved 2016/17 amounts.

The State Library will write to councils shortly with details.

For 2016/17 additional payments of $5,611 have been approved for councils that meet the following criteria:

  • Councils that merged on 12 May 2016. This one-off payment is provided to assist with the merging of library services. It is envisaged that councils that merge in 2016/17 will be eligible for a similar payment in 2017/18.
  • Regional and rural councils that are part of collaborative arrangements under the Library Act are eligible for a collaboration incentive payment. The funds are provided to support and encourage collaborative activities. It is envisaged that rural and regional councils that establish collaborative arrangements under the Act in 2016/17 will be eligible for the payment in 2017/18.
  • Note, some councils qualify for funding under both criteria however just one additional payment will be provided.

The Public Library Funding Strategy for 2016/17 is  as follows:

Subsidy - $1.85 per capita, as prescribed by the Library Regulation 2010

Population served 7,614,507


Subsidy Adjustment Funding

Allocations to councils in addition to $1.85 per capita (above)



Outback Letterbox Library


Strategic Network Projects


State Library services to public libraries


Public Library Infrastructure Grant Fund Year 3


Total Public Library Grants and Subsidies











Financial reporting

Financial Reporting Manual (PDF 470Kb)

The Statement of Library Operations forms will be available online soon.
Councils will be provided with login details as part of the application for subsidy. 

Contact Kathy Morrison, Grants and subsidies clerk