Small Business Administration to Open Grant Applications to Dole Out Economic Relief for 'Shuttered' Music Venues, Theaters, Museums

A Grog Shop concert from the before times - Photo by Emanuel Wallace
Photo by Emanuel Wallace
A Grog Shop concert from the before times

The Small Business Administration is opening up a new way for owners of "shuttered" music venues to apply for much-needed grant relief in early April. And that might just be music to the ears of local venues still largely shut down after more than a year.

On April 8, the SBA will open an online portal for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant application program, with the goal to "provide a much-needed lifeline for live venues, museums, movie theaters" and related spaces.

SVOG is part of the massive economic stimulus package, the American Rescue Plan Act, signed on March 11 by President Biden. That relief bill added $1.25 billion to the cash reserves for grants to be made available for venues.

"We realize this is an enormous undertaking for the SBA and we appreciate everything the agency is doing to ensure this program is administered as Congress intended as expeditiously as possible," said live music industry lobbying group NIVA in a statement. "To say we have been anxiously awaiting the day when we can apply for this emergency relief is an understatement."

For those needing some help navigating the bureaucracy (and you most likely will), the SBA will host a webinar to walk owners and managers through the application process at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 30. Registration for this free webinar can be done online.