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Advocacy Alert - What is in the New Congress COVID Relief Bill?

Posted by Alliance of Artists Communities ; Posted on 
Advocacy Alert - What is in the New Congress COVID Relief Bill?


Originally posted by the Alliance of Artists Communities:

ADVOCACY ALERT | What is in the New Relief Bill?

At the close of the year, U.S. Congress passed $900 billion in Covid economic relief, which includes targeted support for the arts sector.

Further guidelines and applications will be posted soon and Alliance of Artists Communities will be working with their advocacy partners to keep you updated. Below they have highlighted new and expanded relief funding available to artists and arts organizations. You can find a detailed analysis of the bill on the League of American Orchestras website.

NEW! Save Our Stages: $15 billion has been allocated to support live entertainment venues, agents and cultural institutions. Eligible grantees include an individual or entity that “as a principal business activity, organizes, promotes, produces, manages, or hosts live concerts, comedy shows, theatrical productions, or other events by performing artists” who have seen more than a 25% decline in revenue. This funding cannot be combined with second round PPP grants.

EXPANDED! Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): The new bill includes an additional $280 billion for PPP forgivable loans. These loans are accessible to first-time applicants as well as those applying for a second round of grants. This new round of PPP follows the same 60 percent payroll to 40 percent non-payroll cost ratio. Eligible non-payroll costs include rent, interest, and utilities; software and cloud servers; property damage costs related to vandalism; and worker protection costs associated with CDC compliance.

Priority for new loans will be given to first-time applicants, minority businesses, recipients with 10 or fewer employees, and businesses located in low and moderate income neighborhoods. For those applying for a second grant, organizations must have used, or will use, the full amount of their first PPP (but do not need to have certified forgiveness of their first loan). The process has been amended to make grant applications and forgiveness certification faster and easier. The deadline to apply is March 31.

National Endowment for the Arts: The National Endowment for the Arts received an appropriation of $167.5 million, with special permission added for grant funds to be used for operating expenses. This represents a 3% increase from the previous year. (New guidelines announced! See below.)

Relief for Nonprofits Self-Insuring Unemployment Benefits: Nonprofits that self-insure unemployment benefits will continue to have liability reduced by 50% through mid-March.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Compensation: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance has been extended, and reinstated at $300 per week through mid-March. An additional $100 per week will be available for certain workers who have a mix of W-2 and 1099 income.



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