April 23, 2021

The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced that it will re-open the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) portal on Monday, April 26 at 12:00pm Eastern in response to stakeholder feedback expressing concern about the initial plan to re-open the portal over the weekend (*note the SBA’s press release still refers to April 24 because it was issued before the decision to delay, but the portal will re-open on April 26). Earlier today, April 23, SBA released new guidance detailing the application requirements, forms, and required supporting documentation. All information is posted on the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant web portal, which is the definitive source of information about the application process:

Application Form 3515 

Frequently Asked Questions

Applicant User Guide

Application Checklist (PDF)

The Application Form shows what will appear in the online application portal. Applicants should review the FAQ and User Guide to fully prepare to navigate the online application. All applicants should also be aware of the following:

  • The SBA is implementing a waiting room between the portal server and applicants so that if the server gets overwhelmed, applicants will be captured and hold their place in line to enter the portal. The SBA will explain this concept to applicants.
  • Applicants who have not yet registered for an SVOG account should do so as soon as possible.
  • An important reminder: All may apply on the first day of the portal re-opening. Once the portal opens, applicants can submit an application at any time, regardless of whether an organization is within one of the two priority periods. Within priority periods, SBA will process qualifying applications in the order received.
  • The revised revenue chart included in the new application form is among the most substantial changes to the guidance. The SBA has specified that maximum grants amounts will be calculated based on 45% of calendar 2019 earned revenues (FAQ, page 31, question 11). The SBA has clarified that all applicants must demonstrate at least a 25% gross earned revenue decline in at least one quarter of 2020, compared to the same quarter in 2019 (Application, Question 4).
  • The SBA is referring applicants to their Customer Service Center to address technical questions about the application process: (800) 659-2955 or SVOGrant@sba.gov. People who are deaf or hard-of-hearing should call (800) 877-8339 and follow the prompts to SVOG assistance.  More substantive questions should be addressed to the SBA resource partners. Find local SBA resource partners at www.sba.gov/localassistance.
  • Please remember that the Shuttered Venue Operators Grants web page hosted by the SBA will be your definitive source of guidance as the application portal opens.
  • Regarding the timeframe for processing applications, an SBA announcement today stated that awards for the first priority period are expected to begin in mid-May.

The League will remain in dialogue with the SBA to communicate questions and recommendations regarding access to this essential form of federal support as this program is administered throughout the coming weeks and months of the full grantmaking process. The League also posts frequent updates in real time on the League360 Disaster Relief discussion channel for members. Our League overview of the Shuttered Venue Operators Grants program includes more links to SBA resources, and more information on the full array of federal relief options is available in the League’s Federal COVID-19 Relief Resource Center.

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