In a bid to stamp down crime across the Hunter region, the State Government is now looking to local community groups for possible solutions.

The Community Safety Fund is driving this collaborative approach to local crime, with grants of up to $250, 000 up for grabs for those with innovative ideas.

Councils, businesses and not-for-profit groups can apply for the grants online at and submit ideas about improving safety and reducing crime in their local area.

Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, Scot MacDonald says he’d like to see local organisations get involved with this initiative and apply for a grant.

“I’d really urge people, particularly neighbourhood-watch type groups but anybody that is involved in their community, to look at these things and my suggestion would be strongly to talk to your local area command because whatever ideas are put up, really [have] a lot better chance at success if the local police are behind it.”

While crime rates across the region may actually be going down, Scot MacDonald says numerous problem areas still exist.

“By and large, our stats are going down…but having said that, there is no doubt when I’m out there in the community there are “hot-spots” where there’s anti-social behaviour. I’ve been around different areas where people have expressed their concerns over this, well now I’m saying to those people get some of your community together, look at this and see if you can put up a good idea.”

Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, Scot MacDonald