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SBA Announces Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program Will Open April 8

  • U.S. Small Business Administration sets date when it will start taking applications for its Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program
  • The program is open to a variety of arts and cultural organizations
  • More than $16 billion is available to disburse, and eligible recipients can qualify for grants of up to $10 million

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

The U.S. Small Business Administration has set an opening date for its long-awaited Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program, announcing that the application portal will be open on April 8.

The SBA has created a splash page in advance of the opening with information on the program, including eligibility requirements, frequently asked questions, necessary documentation, allowable uses of grant funds, grant calculation formulas, and video tutorials. Applicants can also sign up to be informed when applications are available.

In addition, the SBA will host a national webinar from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. on March 30 to go over the application process. Anyone interested can register for free at this link.

SVOG was set up to benefit a variety of arts and cultural organizations, many of which were forced to shutter at the start of the pandemic and have remained closed or under significant restrictions since that point. Eligible beneficiaries include certain live music and performing arts venues, museums, movie theaters, talent representatives, zoos, and aquariums.

The program was established in December under the Economic Aid Act and received additional funding under the American Rescue Plan. SVOG has now been allocated $16.25 billion, of which more than $16 billion will go toward grant awards and $2 billion will be reserved for entities with fewer than 50 full-time employees.

Grant recipients may receive grants equal to 45 percent of their 2019 gross earned revenue, up to $10 million. The program originally excluded those that received a Paycheck Protection Program loan, but entities that received a PPP loan after Dec. 27 are still eligible to receive a grant reduced by the amount of money received through the loan. Applicants can also apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan, although the funds cannot be applied to the same purpose or cost as the SVOG grant.

Potential applicants are encouraged to sign up for the federal System for Award Management, as this step is necessary to receive a grant.

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