PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 2, 2020
 Vermont Arts Council Applauds $5 Million in Economic Relief Grants to Cultural Nonprofits

MONTPELIER, VT—Governor Phil Scott signed today H.966, a major piece of legislation intended to deliver $96 million in emergency economic recovery grants to Vermont businesses hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The funding includes $5 million to the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) to distribute to the Vermont Arts Council for grants to the nonprofit arts and culture sector.

The support is for eligible Vermont businesses and organizations who have suffered a 50% or greater reduction in revenue due to the COVID-19 public health emergency and economic crisis in a single month from March 1, 2020 to September 1, 2020, as compared to the same period in 2019. 

Vermont's cultural organizations have already sustained enormous financial losses as a result of the pandemic. The more than 200 organizations and 400 individual artists in Vermont who have applied to the Arts Council for support show current and projected losses totaling approximately $36.8 million.

Vermont’s creative sector, which includes arts and cultural organizations and related occupations, provides more than 40,000 jobs annually and comprises 9.3% of all employment in Vermont, higher than the national average.

“We are grateful to our legislators and Governor Scott for this recognition of the economic distress of hundreds of theaters, museums, historic sites and community art centers across Vermont that were the first to close to protect public health, and will be among the last to re-open. Vermont's cultural organizations are economic anchors for our communities, and we know they will be vital to our recovery. The Arts Council is proud to partner with our colleagues at the Agency of Commerce and Community Development to distribute these relief funds as quickly and as widely as possible,” said Vermont Arts Council Executive Director Karen Mittelman.

ACCD will launch an online portal on its website to accept applications on Monday, July 6. More information about eligibility and application requirements can be found on the ACCD website at https://accd.vermont.gov/covid-19/economic-recovery-grants

Details for the nonprofit arts and cultural organizations can be found on the Arts Council website at https://www.vermontartscouncil.org/grants/organizations/emergency-economic-recovery

The economic relief comes from the funding Vermont received through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, signed on March 27, 2020. 

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The Vermont Arts Council envisions a Vermont where all people have access to the arts and creativity in their lives, education, and communities. Engagement with the arts transforms individuals, connects us more deeply to each other, energizes the economy, and sustains the vibrant cultural landscape that makes Vermont a great place to live. Since 1965, the Council has been the state's primary provider of funding, advocacy, and information for the arts in Vermont. Learn more at vermontartscouncil.org

CONTACT:
Catherine Crawley, VAC Communications Director, ccrawley@vermontartscouncil.org , 802-828-5422