Federal, state, and local COVID-19 funding updates
The OCAC will try our best to send regular updates as funding news becomes available. For additional information, be sure to follow Arts NC for state funding updates and Americans for the Arts for national updates.
January 9, 2021
NOTE: Arts Action Fund and Americans for the Arts will be conducting webinars on new COVID-19 Economic Relief Opportunities on Friday at 2:00pm ET on January 15, 2021 and January 22, 2021. Register for FREE at ArtsU or watch live at www.Facebook.com/ArtsActionFund.
- H.R. 133 – the $2.3 trillion spending bill that was signed into law on 12-27-20, included the single largest amount of funding for the arts ever passed by Congress. It includes:
- $15 billion for entities and individuals operating live performance venues, performing arts organizations, museums, independent movie theaters, and talent agencies based on the Save Our Stage Act.
- $284 billion for forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans, allowing businesses to apply for a second loan if they have one calendar quarter in 2020 with 30% less gross revenue than the same quarter in 2019.
- Extension of expiring federal unemployment programs by 11 weeks, including Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) which provided benefits to the self-employed and independent contractors and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) which provides additional weeks of benefits.
- $300 per week for 11 weeks added to all unemployment benefits resulting from the pandemic, half of the $600 per week form Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation that ended on July 31, 2020.
- $20 billion for Emergency Impact Disaster Loans through the Small Business Administration.
- Increase of $5.2 million each in funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities for a FY2021 budget of $167.5 million each.
- PPP: The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the Treasury Department, announced the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will re-open the week of January 11 for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. To promote access to capital, initially only community financial institutions will be able to make First Draw PPP Loans on Monday, January 11, and Second Draw PPP Loans on Wednesday, January 13. The PPP will open to all participating lenders shortly thereafter. Updated PPP guidance outlining Program changes to enhance its effectiveness and accessibility was released on January 6 in accordance with the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Non-Profits, and Venues Act. Application deadline is March 31, 2021. For more information visit SBA.gov/ppp or Treasury.gov/cares.
- Save Our Stages Act: Arts North Carolina expects that the US Small Business Administration (SBA) will release guidance for the “Grants for Shuttered Venues” program (a.k.a. Save Our Stages) in the next two weeks. There is no further information at this time and we do not know when applications will open. We encourage all arts organizations to review the SBA guidelines for Save Our Stages (SOS) to see if you qualify BEFORE applying for a PPP loan, as receipt of a PPP loan may disqualify you from receiving a larger SOS grant.
- Nonprofit Paid Leave to Workers Out Due to COVID-19: The new COVID-19 legislation allows nonprofits and other employers that had been covered by the FFCRA paid leave mandates to continue to receive refundable payroll tax credits if they provide paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave in a manner consistent with FFCRA mandates (if they were still in effect) between January 1, 2021 and March 31, 2021. The UNC School of Government has provided a helpful analysis of considerations for local government employers in deciding whether to continue to offer paid sick leave and paid family and medical leave during the first quarter of 2021. This analysis is also useful for nonprofit employers. The U.S. Department of Labor has also updated its FAQs on FFCRA paid leave to address the expiration of the FFCRA paid leave mandates.
- Small Business Grants: Orange County Office of Economic Development is providing up to $250,000 in funding to support individual grants of approximately $3,000 per applicant for all finalist applicants to Round #3 of the Emergency Small Business Funding Program-COVID-19. Only for-profit businesses are eligible to apply. Deadline to apply is 5pm on January 20, 2021.
- Arts Relief Grants: The Orange County Arts Support Fund has raised almost $100k to date, and will continue to accept donations and provide grants until there is no longer a need. The next round of funding will most likely be late winter/early spring.
Past COVID-19 Update Emails from Katie Murray, director: