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Council Job Retention Allowance

The NSW Government has reintroduced the Job Retention Allowance to safeguard council jobs and delivery of essential community services during the 2021 COVID-19 outbreak.

The Job Retention Allowance subsidy provides $1,500 per fortnight per eligible employee for up to three months to help councils to retain staff who have been stood down as a result of COVID-19.

The Job Retention Allowance was introduced as part of the NSW Government’s COVID-19 Local Government Economic Stimulus Package last year to assist councils to support staff whose employment was impacted by the 2020 lockdown.

Councils forced to stand down permanent or temporary staff because their work has been affected by COVID-19 and the 2021 lockdown can access the State-funded Job Retention Allowance subsidy subject to meeting eligibility requirements.

The Office of Local Government (OLG) has released the following detailed guidance to assist councils to assess their eligibility and apply for funding:

Any council that meets the financial stimulus eligibility criteria can submit claims for the Job Retention Allowance.

Priority will be given to councils with the greatest financial impact from COVID-19.

Councils can find detailed instructions on how to apply in this circular.

Councils should direct any questions about the eligibility criteria or completing the above Return to OLG’s Performance Team by emailing


Information and resources for councils