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Fee waivers, grants to help live music clubs in New Orleans

That’s one of multiple steps city officials outlined this past week to help music venues bounce back from the economic hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NEW ORLEANS — New Orleans is waiving some of the fees that bars with live music must pay in 2021. 

That’s one of multiple steps city officials outlined this past week to help music venues bounce back from the economic hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The waiver announced by New Orleans’ economic development director Jeffrey Schwartz applies to alcoholic beverage permit fees and other fees that music venues normally are required to pay.

Schwartz said it would affect about 150 businesses. Other steps include getting operators ready to apply for Shuttered Venue Operator Grants that are part of the most recent federal coronavirus aid program.

The program includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

"Eligible applicants may qualify for grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees," the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant's webpage says.

For more information visit: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/covid-19-relief-options/shuttered-venue-operators-grant

Who can apply

Eligible entities include:

  • 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

Other requirements of note:

  • Must have been in operation as of February 29, 2020
  • Venue or promoter who received a PPP loan on or after December 27, 2020, will have the SVOG reduced by the PPP loan amount

Grant amount

Grant amounts will reflect either of the following instances:

  • For an eligible entity in operation on January 1, 2019, grants will be for an amount equal to 45% of their 2019 gross earned revenue OR $10 million, whichever is less.
  • For an eligible entity that began operation after January 1, 2019, grants will be for the average monthly gross earned revenue for each full month you were in operation during 2019 multiplied by six (6) OR $10 million, whichever is less.

How to apply

SBA is building the grant program and expects to open applications in early April. Those who have suffered the greatest economic loss will be the first applications processed under the following schedule:

During the first 59 days of opening SVOG, SBA will reserve no less than $2 billion of program funding for grants to entities that have no more than 50 employees.

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