CNY Arts, Inc.



Resources, Information, Grants, and Short-term Relief

Links to resources that may be helpful to you or your organization during the COVID-19 pandemic.

News & Updates


Paycheck Protection Program Opens Window for Exclusive Access for Smallest Businesses, and more changes . . .

On Monday, February 22, 2021 The White House and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced reforms to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which are aimed at helping the smallest businesses and those that have been left behind in previous relief efforts. The official SBA press release can be found here

Start the process with SBA and find forms and more information here

FACT SHEET: Changes to PPP to further promote equitable access to Relief

Highlights of the reform include:

 February 24, 2021 --- March 9, 2021:

  •  Establish a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees

  • Allow sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants
  • Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal
  • Eliminate PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make federal student loan payments by eliminating federal student loan debt delinquency and default as disqualifiers to participating in the PPP; and
  • Ensure access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawful U.S. residents by clarifying that they may use Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP.

    The SBA is finalizing the program changes and will provide updates and implementing rules in early March.


Here are two useful, free online tools for nonprofit organizations:

EqualWeb is a simple resource to help improve your website accessibility. (There are free & paid versions.) 

Form990online is a tax preparation and filing tool for nonprofit organizations. It is FREE to file Form 990/990-EZ for organizations with less than $100,000 in gross receipts.

The SBA Updated its FAQ's for Shuttered Venue Operators Grants on 2/12/21.

A NYSCA PRESENTS webinar:  PPP and SOS Opportunities and Considerations is now available on the NYSCA Presents website- Presented in partnership with the New York Council of Nonprofits (NYCON), Andrew Marietta, NYCON's VP of Regional Development, reviews the Payment Protection Program (PPP) and Shuttered Venue Operator (SOS) Program. Topics include eligibility, criteria, and helping to identify which opportunities are the best fit for your organization. This webinar is free and open to the public. The webinar has been developed for New York State arts organizations of all sizes.

Read this article about a change in how hours and days are counted for NYS Unemployment benefits, in an effort to encourage part-time work. 

Arts Midwest COVID-19 Resource Roundup: January 2021: Includes reports such as NEA's The Art of Reopening: A Guide During COVID-19, and webinar listings such as Revisioning Relevance with Nina SimonJanuary 27, 2021, 9am CST  

Following are details about resources being made available through the newly passed federal Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021 - Watch this space for more information.


A new round of Paycheck Protection Loans has been announced. The Small Business Administration has opened the Paycheck Protection Loan Portal for Community Financial Institutions* as of 1/11/21, for First Draw PPP Loan Applications. (The Second Draw application portal for CFIs opened 1/13/21 and applications for other financial institutions will open soon.) 

Please note:  According to the Paycheck Protection Program Second Draw Loans Overview, Second Draw PPP Loans can be used to help fund payroll costs, including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay for mortgage interest, rent, utilities, worker protection costs related to COVID-19, uninsured property damage costs caused by looting or vandalism during 2020, and certain supplier costs and expenses for operations. Also, according to current information, an applicant for the Second Draw PPP loan who received a First Draw PPP loan should have used all of their first draw loan, on eligible expenses. Please consult SBA, your lender, accountants, etc. on how this applies to your situation.

See for more Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) information, documents and forms.

Please also see, from the SBA: 

Top-line Overview of First Draw PPP (
Top-line Overview of Second Draw PPP (

PPP Guidance from SBA Administrator Carranza on Accessing Capital for Minority, Underserved, Veteran, and Women-owned Business Concerns

*Information from SBA on PPP lenders: Per the Economic Aid Act, a Community Financial Institution (CFI) is one of four types of lenders. 

Types of CFI Lenders:

Community Financial Development Institution (CDFI)
Minority Depository Institution (MDI)
SBA Certified Development Company (CDC)
SBA Microloan Intermediary Lender

A list of participating PPP lenders: Paycheck Protection Program - Participating Lenders (
SBA Microlenders: List of lenders (
SBA Certified Development Companies: Small Business Administration (

PPP and Tax Relief Provisions for Employers: Information by the National Law Review about second PPP Loan eligibility, changes in loan forgiveness, covered costs, loan amount flexibility, plus details on tax treatment of covered PPP loans, deferred payroll taxes, credits for Paid Leave and Family Sick Leave, and more.

Unemployment Relief: Interested in how the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021 will affect Unemployment Insurance and Pandemic Unemployment Insurance? Here's an article by the National Law Review outlining the updates: Unemployment Relief in the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021.

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (also called SOS - Save our Stages)

An SOS (Save Our Stages/Shuttered Venue Operators) grant program, is being administered by the Small Business Administration for the following entities: 

  • 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, and
  • Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements

Thank you to Americans for the Arts for sharing this information:

SBA Shuttered Venues Website. Please check the SBA website’s SVO section on a daily basis as they are posting new and corrected information by the minute at

Applying for PPP versus SVO: If you believe your organization has a good chance at qualifying for an SVO grant, then you should not apply for a PPP second or first draw after 12/27/20:

It was recently clarified that SVO Grant applicants will be disqualified if they apply for a PPP forgivable loan.

SVO Priority Awards. The SBA website modified its original preliminary guidelines to be more in line with the Congressional intent of the newly passed law. SBA is no longer limiting the first two priority distributions to shuttered venues with only 50 employees or fewer. While there is still a set aside of $2 billion for this category of small venues, the early distribution awards are for any size organization with 90 or 70 percent revenue loss (still not clear if this is gross or earned revenue). 

PPP Acceptance Timing. In addition to the clarification above on applying for PPP versus SVO, please know that PPP bank loan offers can only remain open for 10 days before the bank offer is rescinded.

**Americans for the Arts has more updated information about PPP forgiveness forms, EIDL advances and more at, and on its COVID 19 Arts Resources Table

MORE SOS/SVO Information -
Please note: Applicants cannot apply for BOTH a PPP loan and an SOS grant. Please see the following guidelines from the Small Business Administration:  page 25, section vi of Interim Final Rule on Paycheck Protection Program as Amended by Economic Aid Act and page 11 of Interim Final Rule on Second Draw PPP Loans

SOS grant program details are also published in this National Law Review article.

The National Independent Venue Association has posted detailed information about the Save Our Stages Act (SOS)
(now called Shuttered Venue Operators (SVO) grant).

2020 News Archives

Help Locating NYS Services: NYS recently launched the "Find Services" web application, developed in partnership with, to assist New Yorkers in locating appropriate services with one streamlined web application. This can be helpful for those whose income has been affected by COVID-19 as well as those in need for other reasons.

Small businesses, nonprofits and residential landlords that received Paycheck Protection Program amounts of $50,000 or less may now be eligible for a low-interest loan from New York Forward Loan Fund to support reopening (not a forgiveable loan). 

SBA Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Information Sheet

Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness FAQ's (courtesy of Americans for the Arts website)

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Application

The Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act, signed into law on 6/5, provides borrowers more flexibility for loan forgiveness. The loan covered period was extended from 8 weeks to 24 weeks.

Mohawk Valley Economic Development District (MVEDD) CARES Act Revolving Loan Fund OpensThe CARES Act Revolving Loan Fund is a new economic recovery loan program designed to alleviate sudden and severe economic dislocation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This fund provides low interest loans (up to $200,000) to coronavirus-impacted small businesses in Montgomery, Fulton, Oneida, Herkimer, Otsego and Schoharie counties.

The Americans for the Arts Action Fund shared the following news:

On June 8, 2020, the Federal Reserve announced the expansion of the Mainstreet Lending Program to small and medium-size businesses. While these types of loans are not the forgivable type and were previously only available to major corporations, the terms may be attractive and provide much more flexibility for use of funds. $75 billion is being made available for these loans through the CARES Act

CARES Act Table of Loans, Grants, and Compensation Opportunities for the Arts - Link to very detailed information about CARES Act federal funding for both nonprofit agencies and individual artists, along with a robust FAQ section

Reopening Resources

NYSCA offers a Reopening and Recovery resource page featuring NYS and federal guideline links plus a variety of alliance and consortium industry guideline resources. NYSCA's website also includes a NYSArts Now Reopening page with a list of NYS cultural organization venues now open or opening soon. 

New York Forward - Phase 4 information
To view full guidelines, click here.

Arts, culture and heritage agencies and groups that are planning events and activities should refer to the New York Forward Business Reopening LookUp tool for guidance on eligibility to reopen, restrictions, industry-specific public health and safety guidelines, an affirmation form and business safety plan. 

Low risk outdoor includes outdoor zoos, botanical gardens, nature parks, grounds of historic sites and cultural institutions, outdoor museums, outdoor agritourism, local agricultural demonstrations and exhibitions; and other similar institutions/activities.

Low risk indoor includes indoor museums, historical sites, aquariums and other related institutions

Agencies that these guidelines apply to must go to the link and view the summary guidelines, read and affirm the guidelines and then prepare a safety plan that they will keep at their place of business.

Arts, culture and heritage agencies and groups that are planning events and activities should refer to the New York Forward Business Reopening LookUp tool for guidance on eligibility to reopen, restrictions, industry-specific public health and safety guidelines, an affirmation form and business safety plan. 

NYSCA offers a Reopening and Recovery resource page featuring NYS and federal guideline links plus  a variety of alliance and consortium industry guideline resources. 

NYS offers the Find a Test Site Near You tool, an online resource to find a free COVID-19 testing site. The site also states that:   "Individuals who have questions regarding eligibility or access for testing should call the New York State COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or visit the NYSDOH website"

Onondaga County Economic Development Office: (315.435.3770) - General # (315.435.2210) # for reopening questions

Economic Development Office Reopen

Guide to Reopening Theatrical Venues (2nd draft edition), by the Performing Arts Center Consortium Advisory Committee on Reopening

CDC Reopening Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Public Spaces, Workplaces, Businesses, Schools, and Homes

Empire State Development FAQ on Business Forward and Business Reopening

Centerstate CEO free webinar series - Keeping Workers Safe as Businesses Re-open:  Lessons from the Front Lines

Centerstate CEO Back to Business Re-Opening Toolkit

Downtown Committee (Syracuse) COVID-19 Resources including links to Industry-Specific Guidance; Financial & Operational Resources, and more

Artist Funding

Actor's Fund:  To be eligible for The Actors Fund, you must have entertainment industry earnings over $6,500 for three out of the last five years (2015-2020). Income from teaching does not qualify. Dancers, comedians and comedy professionals must document three years of recent earnings of at least $2,000 a year

Adolf and Esther Gottlieb Foundation

AGMA Relief Fund

Alliance of Artists Communities: Resources

American Society of Journalists and Authors Writer’s Emergency Assistance Fund

American Poets Fund- Emergency Funds

Artists’ Fellowship, Inc.

Artist Relief Fund

Artist Relief Tree

A Room of Her Own

Authors League Fund

Carnegie Fund for Authors

CERF+ List of Emergency Funds for Artists

Comprehensive List of Funding Opportunities from 3Arts

COVID-19 Musicians Fund

Directors Guild Foundation

Dramatists Guild Foundation 

Emergency Grants for Visual Artists

Emergency Grants – Women Arts

Emergency Relief Programs – Alliance of Artist Communities

Foundation for Contemporary Arts

Freelance Artist Resources

GoFundMe relief for NY/NJ/PA artists

The Haven Foundation

Hellman/Hammett Grants

Joan Mitchell Foundation

Max’s Kansas City Project (NY)

Mayer Foundation

Motion Picture Pioneers Assistance Fund


Musician's Emergency Relief Fund

New York Foundation for the Arts

NYSCA COVID-19 Resource Page

Pollack-Krasner Foundation

Queens Council on the Arts - list of various funds for individual artists

Rauschenberg Emergency Grants

The Rema Hort Mann Foundation

Rhythm & Blues Foundation

Rosenberg Fund For Children

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Emergency Medical and Legal Fund

Springboard for the Arts

Sweet Relief Musicians’ Fund

Urgent Action Fund for Women’s Human Rights

Also see NYS Department of Labor Resource Guide at the top of this list

Other Artist Resources

NYSCA COVID-19 Resource Page In addition to funding resources, this page lists information on legal resources, virtual workspaces, digital tools for artists, stress management, and more

Webinar/Panel: Artists in a Time of Global Pandemic

Arts Organization Funding

Central New York Community Foundation Impact Grant

Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties

Emerson Foundation

Gilbert Fund

HNY CARES Emergency Relief Grants
501c3 organizations in NYS with humanities mission & budgets under $500,000

Mayer Foundation

The Mohawk Valley COVID-19 Response Fund - The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties and United Way of the Valley and Greater Utica Area's community-wide fund to support organizations responding to human services needs in Herkimer and Oneida counties resulting from the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic. 

NYCON: Nonprofit Resources 

NYSCA COVID-19 Resource Page

Onondaga Small Business Development Center - Resources for small businesses and entrepreneurs, including a county specific resource list for Cayuga, Cortland, Madison, Onondaga, Oswego, and Seneca Counties

Pollack-Krasner Foundation

Springboard for the Arts

Also see NYS Department of Labor Resource Guide & NEA CARES Act Funding at the top of this list.

Other Funding


Discussions & Webinars

If you missed any of the live webinars from The Arts Center at Purchase College, recorded presentations of The PAC in Your Living Room virtual coffee hour are available online, including the following webinars, and more:

Artists and Presenters in the Virtual Classroom: Working with Schools in the Time of COVID-19

The Role of the Agent in the Time of COVID-19

Building the Future Now

Necessity is the Mother of Invention: Success in Presenting the Performing Arts Online

Funding for the Performing Arts: Surveying the Regional Landscape in the Time of Social Distancing

Keep the Arts Thriving: How Can Artists, Agents, and Institutions Work Together in Revenue-Free Models During This Time of Social Distancing (text summary)

Bond, Schoeneck and King offers recorded and weekly webinars on a variety of COVID-19 related topics for businesses, such as reopening, best practices, liability, employment law, and more.

NYSCA Presents offers free webinars for cultural workers, artists and creatives. Current recorded webinars: Guiding Board Members and Continuing Your Mission During COVID and Beyond, Moving your Content into the Digital World: Legal Guide for Individual Artists and Arts Organizations, Arts Online: COVID Communications and Beyond, and Debunking the Top 5 Fundraising Myths in the Time of COVID-19

Other Arts Organizations Resources

Arts Ready Alert – Preparing for the Potential Impact of Coronavirus

Grantmakers for the Arts Resource List

Lawyers Alliance for New York: ”Protecting Your Nonprofit from COVID-19” 

National Coalition for Arts’ Preparedness & Emergency Response

National Endowment for the Arts: COVID-19 FAQ Response

NYCON: Nonprofit Resources 

NYSCA COVID-19 Resource Page In addition to funding resources, this page lists information on legal resources, virtual workspaces, digital tools for artists, setting up an emergency fund, stress management, and more

TSNE MissionWorks Resource List - COVID-19 related informational articles on a variety of topics for nonprofits

A guide to livestreaming on HowIRound TV
Navigating COVID-19 for Nonprofits: from Financial Triage to Scenario Planning