The American Rescue Plan

On March 11, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan which includes funding for the National Endowment for the Arts to support organizations and jobs in the arts sector that have been impacted by the pandemic. The $135 million allocated for the Arts Endowment in this historic legislation represents a significant commitment to the arts and a recognition of the value of the arts and culture sector to the nation’s economy and recovery.

The Arts Endowment is moving quickly to develop guidelines and application materials for the competitive funding process. We will provide periodic updates and important information about how to apply in this section of the website. The goal is to craft a process which factors in important issues such as equity and access and which will benefit as many nonprofit arts organizations as possible.

Additionally, per the Arts Endowment’s legislation, 40 percent of the $135 million will be directed to regional arts organizations and state arts agencies to be distributed through their funding programs. These funds and the 60 percent awarded directly by the Arts Endowment will not require cost share/matching funds from grantees. Please check back here for updates on program/funding guidelines.

The American Rescue Plan’s extension of pandemic unemployment assistance, health insurance coverage, food and rent assistance, and direct stimulus checks also provides immediate assistance to our sector’s creative workers. (See here for a description of the legislation) Outside of the allocation for the Arts Endowment, here are additional components of the plan that impact the arts community:

  • $135 million for the National Endowment for the Humanities
  • $200 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services
  • $175 million for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting
  • An additional $7.25 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
  • An additional $1.25 billion for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program will provide a new infusion of assistance to self-employed workers and businesses of all types within the creative sector. SVOG was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, and amended by the American Rescue Plan Act to include the additional funds and to amend qualifications for the grants to include those who had previously received loans through the Payroll Protection Program. The program now includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.
  • $1,400 stimulus payments for adults and any dependents in households with earnings of less than $80,000 for single filers, $120,000 for Head of Household filers, and $160,000 for married couples filing jointly and expanded Child Tax Credit for households with children.
  • Extending the additional unemployment compensation of $300 until September 6, 2021.