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Shuttered Venue Operators Grants expected to launch in April 2021

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The much-anticipated Shuttered Venue Operators Grants remain on an uncertain timeline. While the U.S. Small Business Administration has not set an exact date, it expects to begin accepting applications in early April.

The grant program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. The program includes $15 billion in grants to shuttered venues and other affected businesses and will be administered by the administration’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act signed into law on March 4 includes an additional $1.25 billion in funding for the grant program and also allows eligible entities that receive a first- or second-draw Paycheck Protection Program loan after Dec. 27, 2020, to also receive a Shuttered Venue Operators Grant. Receiving funds under both programs had been prohibited, but the new law makes it possible to receive both.

In addition to the indication that the application process will be open in April, the administration recently issued an updated preliminary checklist of documents applicants may be required to submit.

Who is eligible for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grants?

Eligible applicants may qualify for the grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount of $10 million. You can see more of the initial guidance released here on our Coronavirus Hub.

Eligible entities include:

  • Live venue operators or promoters
  • Theatrical producers
  • Live performing arts organization operators
  • Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums that meet specific criteria
  • Motion picture theater operators
  • Talent representatives
  • Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements

The administration has not started accepting applications. At this point, future applicants are encouraged to follow along closely for future guidance. We will give updates on the latest developments through the Washington Hospitality Association Coronavirus Resource Guide and you can also sign up for email alerts for updates on the roll out of the grant program.