December 6, 2022

Volume XII, Number 340


December 06, 2022

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December 05, 2022

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Applications Open April 8 For New Shuttered Venue Operators Grant


  • American Rescue Plan Act set aside $16 billion in grants for shuttered entertainment venues and similar entities

  • SBA will begin accepting Shuttered Venue Operators Grant applications on April 8

  • Live venue operators, promoters, theatrical producers, motion picture theater operators, talent representatives, and others are eligible for the special loan

A critical Small Business Association (SBA) grant program defined within the American Rescue Plan Act – signed into law last month – targets the entertainment industry and will begin accepting applications on April 8. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) offers assistance to operators who have had to shut down their entertainment businesses and other venues due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

According to the SBA, the following groups are eligible for this grant if they were in operation on Jan. 1, 2019:

  • 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

These groups will be eligible to receive the lesser of 45% gross earned revenue or $10 million.  Entities who began operating after Jan. 1, 2019, may still be eligible for funds.  

Once the applications are open, the SBA is expected to allocate funds in three tranches, prioritized based on entities’ revenue lost due to the pandemic.  The first two weeks’ awards will be granted to entities with 90% or more loss of revenue, the second two weeks will be devoted to grants with 70% or more loss of revenue, and entities with 25% or more revenue loss will be eligible in the final tranche of grants.  

Like the Paycheck Protection Program of 2020, the funds from the SVOG can be used on operating expenses such as payroll, mortgage/rent, utilities, worker protection expenditures, insurance payments, and other costs.  The $16 billion devoted to the SVOG program is expected to be distributed quickly; eligible recipients should consider working with their representatives to be prepared for the April 8 application portal opening.

© 2022 BARNES & THORNBURG LLPNational Law Review, Volume XI, Number 93

About this Author

Lauren Hancock Government Services Attorney Barnes & Thornburg Washington, D.C.

Lauren Hancock brings considerable knowledge and experience about the workings of government entities to her clients. Having served as counsel to Georgia Sen. David Perdue’s chief of staff and worked for current Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue when he was Governor of Georgia, she helps clients advance in their business endeavors where they involve policy matters and government procurement.

Lauren is process- and results-driven government services attorney. She is persistent and efficient in her communications. Her objective is to offer clients strategic legal and public...

Jason Karlov, Barnes and Thornburg Law Firm, Los Angeles, Corporate and Media Law Attorney

Jason Karlov is the Entertainment, Media and Sports Practice Group Chair at Barnes & Thornburg. He represents a variety of clients in the music, entertainment, live events, advertising and technology industries. His clients include individuals, such as Bob Dylan and Stevie Wonder, as well as institutions that work and invest in entertainment and technology, including such well-known brands as DreamWorks, Lionsgate, Merrill Lynch, the Olympics, Samsung, VeriSign and Yahoo!.

The work that Mr. Karlov handles for his clients requires his knowledge of, and participation in, virtually...

Stephen G. Weizenecker tax lawyer Barnes Thornburg

Entertainment lawyer Steve Weizenecker serves as counsel on tax incentives and financing for film, television and videogame clients. He has also has worked with numerous jurisdictions on developing or improving their economic incentives for the entertainment industry. Personable and patient, Steve takes the time to listen to what each client needs, understand their concerns and incorporate their goals into each step he takes.

Clients and colleagues alike know that they can rely on Steve to serve as a resource for information when helping them to take advantage of production...