CARES Act 

The CARES grant 2021 application period is now closed. The guidelines and forms for this program are still posted below for the duration of the program, for existing grantees. If you have any questions, contact CARES@UnitedArts.cc

Orange County COVID-19 Reopening Arts Grant Programs and Guidelines 

Program Continuation

On December 30, 2020, the Orange County Board of County Commissioners approved the continuation of the Orange County COVID-19 Reopening Arts Grant Programs (the “Program”), in conjunction with the federal stimulus extension signed by the President, allowing that the CARES Grant funding could carry over through June 30, 2021, and due to the important function that nonprofit community arts and culture organizations (“Arts Organizations”) serve in Orange County, Florida.

 

As a state, national, and international tourism epicenter, the County recognizes that Arts Organizations serve as essential economic engines to the Central Florida community by providing economic support to individuals and businesses alike.

 

The County’s Arts Organizations employ thousands of Orange County residents, many of whom work on a “gig” basis. Many of these “gig” workers have had little or no opportunities for work as performance venues have been closed or working at partial capacity and in-person interactions have been dramatically decreased and discouraged due to the CDC’s COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. As a result, COVID-19 has placed these individuals and their families in financial and emotional distress.

 

Other examples of the economic support the County’s Arts Organizations provide are:

  • Job creation for individuals and businesses directly involved in the production of arts or cultural activities or performances;
  • Generation of foot traffic to local restaurants and businesses that have struggled throughout the COVID-19 pandemic; and
  • Promotion of local businesses through sponsorship and advertisement opportunities.

 

Additionally, the County finds that assisting the Arts Organizations is a matter of public health. At the end of September 2020, the State of Florida moved to “Phase 3” of its “Safe. Smart. Step-by Step. Plan for Florida’s Recovery.” So-doing permitted certain facilities where the general public gather (including, for example, playhouses and theaters) to reopen with limited social distancing protocols. As a direct result, the County has a public health interest in mitigating the potential of facilities owned and operated by Arts Organizations from becoming the sources of COVID-19 “super-spreader” incidents.

 

Moreover, the CDC, among many other public health organizations, has found that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a broad increase in stress, anxiety, and other associated mental health concerns among members of the public. Such increase in mental health concerns are related not only to loss, grief, or general fear and anxiety caused by the pandemic, but are also associated with the isolation and loneliness caused by the recommended social distancing guidelines.

 

Multiple studies have shown that the arts are a powerful tool for mental health treatment. Accordingly, the County finds that Arts Organizations being able to host public performances and activities that are thoughtfully planned with the CDC’s guidance in mind will provide safe opportunities for members of the general public to connect with one another in a manner that could mitigate the impact of mental stressors caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially as the holiday season arrives.

 

For the forgoing reasons, the County finds that assisting the Arts Organizations in making their performances and activities available to the public in a manner that is consistent with CDC guidelines for social distancing, sanitation, masking, and crowd-control, is an important part of its response to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

In order to accomplish its above-stated objectives, the County has continued the following two grant programs for the Arts Organizations:

  • CARES 2021 Grant Program #1: The Community Arts PPE and Facility COVID-19 Public Health Grant; and
  • CARES 2021 Grant Program #2: The Community Arts Outdoor Facility COVID-19 Public Health Grant.

The County reserves the right to amend and change the Program’s criteria and requirements as it may deem necessary in order to ensure that both the spirit and intent of the Program are met, or to reallocate any Program funds to other purposes that the County deems to best serve the public’s welfare and interest.

 

Grant Programs

General Grant Program Applicant Qualification Criteria

Both grant programs shall be administered and managed through United Arts of Central Florida, Inc., and will require that the applicants meet the following four requirements in order to qualify for funding consideration. Applicants are advised to read the information below regarding the specific grant programs for any additional qualification information.

  • Be Florida registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations;
  • Have a mission that is specific to the promotion of arts or culture in the Central Florida community;
  • Be located and provide programming in Orange County, Florida; and
  • Be able to demonstrate a direct COVID-19 impact.

 

Applicants are encouraged to contact United Arts of Central Florida, Inc., by email at CARES@UnitedArts.cc or by telephone at 407.628.0333, x223 with any questions regarding the grant programs.

 

CARES 2021 Grant Program #1: Community Arts PPE and Facility COVID-19 Public Health Grant

  1. Coverage Period: Eligible expenses made between 01/01/2021 and 4/30/2021
  2. NEW: Application Deadline: 3/15/2021
  3. Eligible Expenses
  • Personal Protective Equipment (“PPE”)
    – Items already purchased and submitted for reimbursement and/or proposed for new purchases

    • Additional Qualifications:
      • As part of the County’s push to reimburse agencies and businesses for PPE costs as part of its general COVID-19 public health initiative, all Arts Organizations are eligible for reasonable reimbursement for PPE expenses.
      • To ensure competitive pricing, applicants for PPE expenses must provide three bids for each eligible procurement of goods that is in excess of $10,000. The limit applies to an individual line item, or a multitude of a single item that totals over $10,000.

Eligible Grant 1 – PPE expenses:

  • Cleaning Products – Antiseptic, Antibacterial
  • Face Shields
  • Gloves
  • Gowns
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Masks
  • Shoe Covers
  • Thermometers
  • Touchless Hand Sanitizer Dispensers
  • UV Lighting (hand-held, not HVAC)
  • Wipes – Antiseptic, Antibacterial
  • Other COVID-19 screening or safety equipment (must present proposal to request pre-approval of “other” items)
  • Shipping and handling related to COVID-19 safety items will be reimbursed; discounts and taxes will not be reimbursed

Ineligible PPE expenses (non-exhaustive):

  • No Air fresheners, oils, or regular handsoap
  • No First Aid kits
  • No Flashlights
  • No Goggles or other gear to wear while fogging
  • No Safety/reflective vests
  • No Storage racks for COVID supplies

 

  • Public Health Facility Improvements —
    Items already purchased and submitted for reimbursement and/or proposed for new purchases

    • Additional Qualifications: For an Arts Organization to qualify for Public Health Facility Improvement expenses, the organization must:
      • Have a facility that was open to the public at the time the expenses were or will be made;or demonstrate that it has made, or will make, such expenses in order to open its facility to the public prior to June 30, 2021.
      • Either own or have a long-term exclusive lease for the facility in question. If a long-term lease is held, such lease must have been entered into prior to January 1, 2021 and the landlord must approve of any permanent improvements to the facility.
      • Have made, or will make, activities and performances available to the public prior to June 30, 2021 by use of such facility.
      • Have all facility improvements completed prior to April 30, 2021. Due to restrictions on the federal funding, any improvements that are not completed prior to April 30, 2021 shall not be eligible for funding even if such improvements had been initially approved for funding by the County or United Arts. Applicants applying for such improvements do so at their own risk.
      • To ensure competitive pricing, have three bids for each eligible procurement of goods and/or services that is in excess of $10,000. The limit applies to an individual line item, or a multitude of a single item that totals over $10,000.

 

Eligible Grant 1 – Public Health Facility Improvement Expenses:

  • Air purifiers with HEPA filters (Air Doctor, etc.)
  • Enhanced cleaning – the difference between the facility’s standard cleaning expenses and the enhanced cleaning and sanitation expenses related to COVID-19
  • Foggers and refill solution
  • Improvements to the HVAC air ventilation and filtration systems to meet COVID-19 requirements (IF bipolar ionization, applicant must present documentation for pre-approval that proposed equipment has both effective COVID-19 response and the UL 2998 standard certification that the CDC notes in their response to this equipment’s eligibility.)
  • Sneeze guards and plexiglass partitions
  • Social distancing and COVID-19 safety signage
  • Touchless door(s)
  • Touchless entry system
  • Touchless payment technology
  • Touchless pedal-style door openers
  • Touchless soap and/or sanitizer dispensers, and hand drying equipment
  • Touchless ticketing system (scanning without transfer between people)
  • Upgrades to existing restroom toilets and sinks from manual to touchless technology
  • Walk-through scanner(s) for temperature, facial recognition (can be used for contact tracing)
  • Other COVID-19 screening or safety equipment (must present proposal to request pre-approval of “other” items)
  • Shipping and handling related to COVID-19 safety items will be reimbursed; discounts and taxes will not be reimbursed

 Ineligible Expenses (non-exhaustive):

  • No Auxiliary items
  • No Business operation expansion or alternate means (i.e., virtual streaming expenses), etc.
  • No Computers (tablets or other technology that is required to operate certain ticketless or touchless systems may be allowable, pending proof from vendor that certain equipment is required to operate the system – must be pre-approved by United Arts)
  • No Construction costs for staff time, but costs by vendors for installations related to touchless technology, HVAC, etc. are eligible.
  • No Costs to purchase rights to performance materials
  • No Cost of recording and livestreaming performances
  • No Expansion of classroom or audience seating (if anything it would necessitate reducing tables/desks)
  • No Expenditures related to fundraisers or other patron events
  • No Expenditures related to non-arts/cultural aspect of business, such as weddings
  • No Extended warranty or extended subscription fees (service/usage charges for COVID-19-related equipment for the months in service under this grant period will be eligible)
  • No Flashlights or Lighting (other than UV)
  • No Furniture
  • No Garbage cans
  • No Loudspeakers, mics or other sound equipment
  • No Materials for program delivery (programs, headsets,
  • No Miscellaneous consumables: batteries, extension cords, shelving, tables, desks, curtains, laptops
  • No Paper towels, tissue or toilet paper
  • No Personal purchases on behalf of the company that are later reimbursed; must be company expense through company finances
  • No Personnel or staffing expenses
  • No Petty cash expenditures without proof of payment documentation
  • No Printer or toner to print COVID signs, however purchased CDC-compliance safety signage is eligible
  • No Security systems
  • No Software to facilitate fundraising
  • No Taxes will be reimbursed
  • No Tile adjacent to sink/faucet upgrades to touchless
  • No Water bottles, water fountains or water bottle dispensing/refilling units
  • No Worktables for check-in stations, classrooms, lunchrooms

 

CARES 2021 – Grant Program #2: Community Arts Outdoor Facility COVID-19 Public Health Grant

  1. Coverage Period: Eligible expenses made between 1/1/21 and 4/30/2021. 
  2. Application Deadline: March 15, 2021.
  • Maximum Award:Up to $250,000 per applicant.
  • Items proposed for new purchases with final award determined by a review committee to ensure that such award conforms with the intention of the grant program.
  1. Additional Qualifications:
  •  The CDC has encouraged the use of outdoor space for performances, as so-doing has proven to be a safer alternative to indoor public gatherings. For an Arts Organization to qualify for this grant, they must:
    • Demonstrate that they have a facility that is open to the public that either lacks the space required to meet the CDC’s COVID-19 social distancing guidelines or has space, but use of such space would be economically infeasible to safely make activities and performances available to the public; and
    • Make activities and performances available to the public between 1/1/2021 and 6/30/2021.
  • The Arts Organization must either own or have a long-term exclusive lease for the facility in question. If a long-term lease is held, such lease must have been entered into prior to January 1, 2021 and the landlord must approve of any permanent improvements to the facility. Qualifying Arts Organizations are permitted to apply if they intend to use outdoor common areas that are adjacent to their facilities, but they must first obtain written consent from the owner of such facility-adjacent outdoor common areas. (Adjacent is defined as next to, without any other structure coming between the leased/owned space and the common area.)
  • Any outdoor performance and activity spaces for which funding assistance from the County is received must be for primarily for public use and designed to control capacity and ensure social distancing.
  • To ensure competitive pricing, have three bids for each eligible procurement of goods and/or services that is in excess of $10,000. The limit applies to an individual line item, or a multitude of a single item that totals over $10,000.

 

Eligible and Ineligible Grant 2 – Outdoor Facility Expenses

Eligible Expenses:

  • Chairs, and related dollies for transport
  • Fencing – barricades, stanchions, bike racks, etc. – materials necessary to provide for crowd control and social distancing
  • Tents and related weights, sidewalls, carrying/storage container, and fees related to installation, for rental or purchase (NOTE: For every proposal for a tent(s), applicant must provide either proof of permit, status, or exemption or waiver of permit requirement.)
    • Upgrade costs for portable restrooms – the difference between the standard facility and one(s) with enhanced ventilation for COVID-19 safe airflow and social distancing
    • Other COVID-19 screening or safety equipment (must present proposal to request pre-approval of “other” items)
  • Shipping and handling related to COVID-19 safety items will be reimbursed; discounts and taxes will not be reimbursed

 

Ineligible Expenses (non-exhaustive):

  • No Asphalt resurfacing
  • No Astroturf
  • No Audio-visual equipment
  • No Heating units
  • No Lighting
  • No Loudspeakers, mics or other sound equipment
  • No Miscellaneous consumables: batteries, extension cords, shelving, tables, desks, curtains, laptops
    • No Stages or any other associated performance expenses that are not directly COVID-19 related

 

Notes for both Grants 1 and 2:

  • Application period opens Monday, Feb 1, 2021, 9 a.m.
  • Application deadlines are:

– Grant #1 – March 15, 2021

– Grant #2 – March 15, 2021 (maximum request $250,000)

  • No expenses before January 1, 2021, or after April 30, 2021
  • Program ends April 30, 2021
  • First-come, first-served, until funds are depleted, or by March 15, 2021, whichever is sooner. All grants are paid on a reimbursement basis only.
  • All supplies, services and improvements must be purchased and/or completed by April 30, 2021, and utilized through the period ended June 30, 2021.
  • Please note that the ruling from Orange County on the allowable items is premised on the federal guidance from the Department of the Treasury. It is not just about where there is a COVID-19 need. The County is not authorized under law to widely address the COVID-19 related needs of organizations. The funding is for COVID-19-related public safety assistance. Therefore all allowable expenses must tie directly to COVID-19 safety, and operating and reopening facilities safely. This is not about business decisions; it is about safety, and expenses that an organization would not have if not for COVID-19, and must have a direct line to COVID-19.

 

First-time applicants to the Orange County CARES 2021 program:

  • Apply using the United Arts online grant application system and the CARES 2021 First-time application:
    –  Click on the linkto start an account for your organization. Visit this tutorial first for a “How To.”
  • Applications are available in many languages using the automatic translator. Sign onto the grant portal and select your preferred language in the upper left-hand corner of the screen.

                                                                                 

Current grantees of the Orange County CARES 2020 program:

  • Do you have a balance on your CARES 2020 grant? You may resume use of remaining funds if you did not fully utilize funds awarded under the CARES 2020 program. Simply request an extension via email to CARES@UnitedArts.cc by February 28, 2021, and submit your request online using the Follow-up Form: CARES 2020 UPDATE Request and Expenses Worksheet.
  • Current CARES 2020 grantees may file for a new request online by completing an abbreviated application using the same Follow-up Form: CARES 2020 Grant 1 or Grant 2 UPDATE – Request 1 & Expenses Worksheet.
  • IF a current grantee does not wish to use any remaining grant balance nor file for a new application, or does not request an extension by February 28, 2021, any remaining funds from the CARES 2020 grant will be forfeited and returned to the funding pool.

 

NEW: Applicants are permitted to submit multiple applications for the 2020 CARES grant program.

  • Applicants may request funding under Grant Program #1 UPDATE for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and/or Public Health Facility Improvements*, and/or under Grant Program #2 UPDATE-Outdoor Facility Improvements*, and may do so in multiple applications, with the last application by March 15, 2021.
  • A subsequent application cannot include items dated prior to their latest application submittal. (Example: Grant 1/Application 1 is submitted on February 28. Grant 1/Application 2 is submitted on March 15 and may not include any items dated prior to Feb 28.)

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*Applicants must meet eligibility requirements for facility improvement grants, including facility ownership or long-term lease. See Additional Qualifications.

Forms

 

      CONTACTS

 Let us know if you have questions or need assistance:
General questions: CARES@UnitedArts.cc
Lead:
Trudy Wild, Grants & Research
Trudy@UnitedArts.cc | o: 321.972.9837,
c: 321.663.3669
Lead:
Juliana Steele, Interim President/VP of Administration & CFO
Finance@UnitedArts.cc | 407.960.4929