US music venues can apply for pandemic relief grants in April
The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) is offering $16 billion in funding to live venues, museums, theaters, and other entertainment spaces that have remained closed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Applications for relief grants will be available via the Small Business Administration (SBA) website on April 8. SBA Administer Isabella Casillas Guzman said,
“Help is here for venue operators hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The SBA has worked diligently to build the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program from the ground up to assist and address the diverse eligibility requirements of each type of applicant and we will open for applications on April 8.”
Eligible venues may receive up to 45% of their pre-pandemic revenue, with a maximum single grant capping at $10 million. $2 billion of the fund is reserved for venues with more than 50 employees.
In order to be eligible for the grant, venues must first register through the System for Award Management (SAM) website. Some eligibility requirements include that venues must have been operational no later than February 29, 2020, and had a 25% or greater reduction in revenue over the course of the pandemic. On March 30, the SBA will explain the application process during an informational webinar.
The SVOG passed through Congress in December as part of a $900 billion stimulus package. An additional $1.25 billion was allocated to the SVOG earlier this month after President Joe Biden passed the American Rescue Plan, allowing music venues to apply for Payroll Protection Plans (PPP) loans up until March 31.
Initially sponsored by Senators Chuck Schumer and Amy Klobuchar, the SVOG had been a part of the Save Our Stages Act. In October of 2020, Major Lazer and Dillon Francis joined numerous artists to support Save Our Stages during a multi-day livestream.
Featured image: Tom Wilkinson