The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, and amended by the American Rescue Plan Act. The program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.
Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.
Who can apply?
- Live venue operators or promoters
- Theatrical producers
- Live performing arts organization operators
- Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria
- Motion picture theater operators
- Talent representatives
- Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements
Other requirements of note:
- Must have been in operation as of February 29, 2020
- Venue or promoter who received a PPP loan on or after December 27, 2020, will have the SVOG reduced by the PPP loan amount
Applications are expected to be available in April. Processing will be based on a priority schedule with those who have suffered the greatest economic loss receiving priority.
Funds may be used for regular operating expenses which includes:
- Payroll costs
- Rent payments
- Utility payments
- Scheduled mortgage payments (not including prepayment of principal)
- Scheduled debt payments (not including prepayment of principal on any indebtedness incurred in the ordinary course of business prior to February 15, 2020)
- Worker protection expenditures
- Payments to independent contractors (not to exceed $100,000 in annual compensation per contractor)
- Other ordinary and necessary business expenses, including maintenance costs
- Administrative costs (including fees and licensing)
- State and local taxes and fees
- Operating leases in effect as of February 15, 2020
- Insurance payments
- Advertising, production transportation, and capital expenditures related to producing a theatrical or live performing arts production. (May not be primary use of funds)
Funds may not be used for:
- Buy real estate
- Make payments on loans originated after February 15, 2020
- Make investments or loans
- Make contributions or other payments to, or on behalf of, political parties, political committees, or candidates for election
- Any other use prohibited by the Administrator
Those receiving funds are strongly encouraged to seek professional assistance regarding the use of the funds and how to ensure compliance. Failure to use funds properly or failure to be able to show that the funds were used properly could result in the grantee having to repay all or part of the grant. Grantees will be required to maintain documentation demonstrating their compliance with the eligibility and other requirements of the SVOG program. They must retain employment records for four years following their receipt of a grant and retain all other records for three years.
For assistance with applying for the Shuttered Venue Operator’s Grant or for information on any of the other SBA relief options including the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) contact a PK Law Corporate and Real Estate Attorney.
Source: U.S. Small Business Administration Website https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/covid-19-relief-options/shuttered-venue-operators-grant#section-header-0