Shuttered Venues Operators Grant

The Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Non-Profits, and Venues Act created the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant to support eligible venues impacted by the COVID pandemic. Please read below for the latest changes in accordance with guidance from the U.S. Small Business Administration. 

CTSBDC is here to support you, and you can always reach out to work one-on-one with an advisor, confidentially, and at no-cost to you.

Request Advising

Who can apply?


You are eligible to apply if you are a:

  • Live venue operator or promoter
  • Theatrical producer
  • Live performing arts organization operator
  • Relevant museum operator, zoo and aquarium who meets specific criteria
  • Motion picture theater operator
  • Talent representative, and

Each business entity is owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements

Other requirements of note:

  • Must have been in operation as of Feb. 29, 2020
  • Venue or promoter must not have received a PPP loan on or after Dec. 27, 2020

We will update as additional eligibility guidelines are published by the Small Business Administration who administers the program.

How does the grant work?


If the eligible entity was in operation on 1/1/2019:

How Much: The lesser of an amount equal to 45% of their 2019 gross earned revenue OR $10 Million

If the entity was in operation after 1/1/2019:

How Much: The lesser of the average monthly gross revenue for each full month you were in operation during 2019 multiplied by 6 OR $10 Million


The SBA is in the process of setting up the grant program and is not yet accepting applications. There is, however, an order of priority to assist the smallest and most impacted businesses first. The order is as follows:

First Priority

(1st 14 days of grant awards)

Entities that suffered a 90% or greater revenue loss between April 2020 through December 2020 due to the pandemic.

Second Priority

(next 14 days of grant awards)

Entities that suffered a 70% or greater revenue loss between April 2020 through December 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Third Priority

(28 days after First & Second Priority Awards are made)

Entities that suffered a 25% or greater revenue loss between April 2020 through December 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


(61 days after initial grant awards)

Eligible entities of any size that suffered a 25% or greater revenue loss

What about supplemental funding?


After the First & Second Priority Rounds, those entities will be able to apply for additional funding if they can demonstrate suffered a 70% or greater revenue loss for the most recent calendar quarter (as of 04-01-21 or later)

What can I use the money for?


  • Payroll costs
  • Rent payments
  • Utility payments
  • Scheduled mortgage payments (not including prepayment of principal)
  • Scheduled debt payments (not including prepayment of principal) on any indebtedness incurred in the ordinary course of business prior to 02-15-20)
  • Worker protection expenditures
  • Payments to independent contractors (not to exceed $100K in annual compensation per contractor)
  • Other ordinary and necessary business expenses, including maintenance costs
  • Administrative costs (incl. fees and licensing)
  • State and local taxes and fees
  • Operating leases in effect as of 02-15-20
  • Insurance payments
  • Advertising, production transportation, and capital expenditures related to producing a theatrical or live performing arts production. (May not be primary use of funds.)

Grantees may not use award funds to:

  • Buy real estate
  • Make payments on loans originated after 02-15-20
  • Make investments or loans
  • Make contributions or other payments to, or on behalf of, political parties, political committees, or candidates for election
  • Any other use prohibited by the Administrator

Grantee Recordkeeping

Grantees will be required to maintain documentation demonstrating their compliance with the eligibility and other requirements of the program. They must retain employment records for four years following their receipt of a grant and retain all other records for three years.

What documentation do I need?

At the moment, we are awaiting additional guidelines from the SBA.

We encourage you to gather relevant documents to demonstrate you were in operation on 1/1/2019 or thereafter, and that you were in operation on 2/29/2020 based on the eligibility and award guidelines.

These can take the form of tax returns, bank statements, or bills that show you were actively operating.

In addition, you would want to gather tax documents or other financial documents that can demonstrate the revenue decline decline, as well as a list of employees to show eligibility for each stage based on employee numbers.

We will continue to update as guidelines are released. 

What can I do to get ready?

Register for a DUNS number so you can then register in the System for Award Management (

Please note: SVOG applicants need to register with the federal government’s SAM at to apply and CANNOT use an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, Employer Identification Number, or other means of identification or registration.