Provisional LegCo Panel on Home Affairs
Government Subsidies and Support to Mutual Aid Committees
This paper briefs Members on the current level of government subsidies to Mutual Aid Committees (MACs) and other forms of assistance provided.
2. MACs are voluntary associations formed by residents of a building. In general, the costs of running the MACs are financed by contributions from residents. However, to demonstrate Government's support for MACs and especially to help alleviate the problem of some MACs which have difficulties in raising sufficient funds to meet their operating expenses, a range of financial assistance is provided.
Financial Assistance Scheme
3. Financial assistance is given by Government to them to help towards meeting costs of running the MACs. It may be used by MACs to cover part of their expenses on items such as telephone rental, electricity charges, office furniture and equipment and stationery. Since 1994/95, the level of subsidy has been increased annually in accordance with the rate of inflation. At present, the maximum level of quarterly subsidy to an MAC is $1,000.
Other forms of support
4. In addition to the recurrent financial subsidies to MACs provided by the Government, the following forms of assistance are also available -
- an advancement of financial assistance of up to $2,000 for the setting up of a new MAC office;
- grants from the General Chinese Charities Fund for the establishment or renovation of MAC offices;
- grants from the Sir David Trench Fund for the purchase of recreational and sports equipment;
- grants from the Provisional District Board funds for the organization of community involvement projects; and
- provision of office accommodation in public housing estates at concessionary or nominal rental.
5. Furthermore, the staff of District Offices provide assistance in, and advice on, the formation and servicing of MACs. We also assist them in organizing community involvement activities.
Home Affairs Department