Administering CCS during Covid-19 outbreak

The current and evolving COVID-19 Delta outbreak, and its effects on the arts sector and community gatherings, is not currently covered by the existing CCS contracts or Guidelines. Therefore, CNZ are updating the CCS Guidelines with specific guidance in relation to COVID-19, and funded projects or upcoming CCS funding rounds.

Below are some common questions we've received regarding CCS and COVID-19, and our approach. If you have a question that is not covered, please get in touch with us ccsadmin@creativenz.govt.nz 

Can our assessment committee meet via video conference (VC) instead of in person?

Yes, as long as the committee meets quorum.

We funded a project in a previous funding round that can't go ahead due to Covid-19. Do they have to return the money?

If a project has been cancelled due to the Delta outbreak and the current COVID-19 alert levels, and all CCS funds have been expended on non-refundable costs, CNZ does not require funds to be returned.   

If the applicant has spent some of their CCS grant, the following applies: 

  • Applicants should seek refunds for any costs they have already incurred. 
  • Applicants can use their grant to honour personnel costs or contracts with freelancers and artists who would have been involved with delivering the project.  
  • Remaining funds should be returned to the council.  

If the applicant has spent none of their CCS grant, the following applies: 

  • Applicants can use their grant to honour personnel costs or contracts with freelancers and artists who would have been involved with delivering the project. 
  • Remaining funds should be returned to the council.  

All applicants need to provide details of how they have spent their funds in their project completion report.  

We funded a project in a previous funding round that has been postponed due to COVID-19. Can we grant a project extension?

If the project is postponed to a later date, and this later date still falls within the 12 month time period for the grant, that is fine.

If the project is postponed to a later date, but this date will fall outside of the 12 month period for the grant, it is already within your discretion to grant an extension for the funded project.

You must keep a record of whatever action you take. At the end of the financial year you will be required to provide CNZ with a summary of all projects impacted by COVID-19, and all actions you have taken on these projects.

Our assessment committee is meeting in the next few weeks to allocate funding from our recent funding round. What if some of these projects can no longer happen due to COVID-19?

Our recommendation is that each application is offered a chance to provide an updated project timeline, in light of recent public health guidance.

  • If the updated project timeline would place the project inside the 12 month period of the grant, it can proceed to the assessment committee meeting with the new timeline. We recommend extra time at the meeting to allow discussion on the new project dates.
  • If the updated project timeline would place the project outside of the 12 month period of the grant, you can advise the applicant that it will not be assessed in the current round, but it will be assessed in the next funding round, and that the applicant can choose to update the application at the next round if they wish (or it can proceed to assessment as is).

But what if our assessment committee has already recently convened and allocated funding?

You can request a new project timeline from the applicant in the letter of offer, with payment contingent on an updated project timeline.

If the applicant supplies a project timeline that will make the project fall outside of the 12 month period, then you are already able to approve this as an extension. Please ensure you keep a record of this.

Ultimately this is the assessment committee's choice, but it is an approach that CNZ encourages.

If some projects are not effected by an current public health guidelines, and are still going ahead, you should recommend the applicant/s to develop a COVID-19 risk management plan and follow all public health guidance on www.covid-19.govt.nz

We haven't yet held our final round of CCS for this financial year, and now we aren't sure if we are able to. Can we decide to not hold another round?

You may decide to not hold another funding round, however you must receive approval from CNZ before you do so. This is because you are contractually required to hold at least 2 rounds a year.

Remember that you are only allowed to roll over 15% of unspent funds (unless otherwise agreed with CNZ), so if you decide to not hold a round you will have to return some funds to CNZ in the next financial year.