The California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program is funded by the State of California and
administered by the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA). Eligibility criteria applies.

Frequently Asked Questions

Last Revised: 06/27/22

The information on this page is subject to change at the discretion of the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) and Lendistry.

Program Overview

Who is Lendistry?

Lendistry is a technology partner that hosts and manages the portal for the Program’s grant application and will make grant payments to approved applicants. Applicants will receive notifications from Lendistry on the status of their application and requests for business information and supporting documents, including their business bank account information.

Visit lendistry.com to learn more about Lendistry.

What is the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

The purpose of the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program is to provide grants to eligible nonprofit performing arts organizations, as defined by the Program, to encourage workforce development.

Grants for this Program will be awarded on a first-come-first-served basis in specified amounts depending on the applicant’s annual gross revenue in the 2019 taxable year.

Grant moneys awarded under this section shall only be used for the following:

  • Employee expenses, including payroll costs, health care benefits, paid sick, medical, or family leave, and insurance premiums;
  • Contributions or payments to a centralized payroll service;
  • Recruitment, training, development, and other human resources related expenses; and/or
  • Other operating expenses or equipment for employees.

What is an “eligible nonprofit performing arts organization?”

“Eligible nonprofit performing arts organization” means a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity that satisfies the criteria for a qualified small business pursuant to subdivision (f) of Section 12100.82, with no more than two million dollars ($2,000,000) in annual gross revenue. An eligible nonprofit may be in one of the following North American Industry Classification System codes, as reported on the entity’s tax return:

  • 711110 – Theater Companies and Dinner Theaters.
  • 711120 – Dance Companies.
  • 711130 – Musical Groups and Artists.
  • 711190 – Other Performing Arts Companies.

An Applicant, or in the case of a fiscal sponsor, such Applicant’s, fiscally-sponsored organization that is currently classified with a National Taxonomy of Exempt Entities (NTEE) code may use the following document to determine which NAICS code is most applicable to their business: NTEE CODE ASSIGNMENTS

What are the eligible uses of funds for the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

Grant moneys awarded under this section shall only be used for the following:

  • Employee expenses, including payroll costs, health care benefits, paid sick, medical, or family leave, and insurance premiums;
  • Contributions or payments to a centralized payroll service;
  • Recruitment, training, development, and other human resources related expenses; and/or
  • Other operating expenses or equipment for employees.

What is the eligibility criteria to qualify for the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

A nonprofit performing arts organization must satisfy the following criteria, at minimum, to be eligible to receive a workforce development grant under the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program:

  1.  Applicant satisfies one of the following:
    1. meets the definition of an “eligible nonprofit performing arts organization” pursuant to Program guidelines, meaning that Applicant is registered as a 501c(3) nonprofit entity that satisfies the criteria for a qualified small business pursuant to subdivision (f) of Cal. Gov’t Code § 12100.82, has no more than two million dollars (≤ 2,000,000) in annual gross revenue, and is in one of the following North American Industry Classification System codes, as reported on the entity’s tax return:
      711110 – Theater Companies and Dinner Theaters.
      711120 – Dance Companies.
      711130 – Musical Groups and Artists.
      711190 – Other Performing Arts Companies; or
    2. serves as a fiscal sponsor for entities that meet the requirements set forth in subsection 1(1) above; and
  2. Applicant, or in the case of a fiscal sponsor, such Applicant’s eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization began operating in the state prior to June 1, 2019, as evidenced by the eligible nonprofit performing arts organization’s official filing with the California Secretary of State.

What are the eligible grant awards for the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

Grants amounts will be awarded based on the annual gross revenue of the eligible nonprofit performing arts organization, or in the case of a fiscal sponsor, such grantee’s eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization.

  • Twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000.00) for applicants with annual gross revenue greater than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) to one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) in the 2019 taxable year.
  • Fifty thousand dollars ($50,000.00) for applicants with annual gross revenue greater than one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00), and up to one million dollars ($1,000,000.00) in the 2019 taxable year.
  • Seventy-five thousand dollars ($75,000.00) for applicants with annual gross revenue greater than one million dollars ($1,000,000.00), and up to two million dollars ($2,000,000.00) in the 2019 taxable year.
Eligible Grant Awards Annual Gross Revenue
in 2019 Taxable Year
$25,000 $1,001 – $100,000
$50,000 $100,001 – $1,000,000
$75,000 $1,000,001 – $2,000,000

What businesses or organizations are ineligible for a Grant Award under the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

The following types of businesses or organizations are ineligible to receive a Grant Award under the Program:

  • a nonprofit entity not registered as either a 501c(3); 
  • a government entity (other than an entity owned and/or operated by a Native American tribe) or elected official office;  
  • a business or organization primarily engaged in political or lobbying activities;  
  • a passive business or organization, investment company or investor who files a Schedule E on its tax returns; 
  • a church or other religious institution, other than a school, child care, or other educational organization affiliated with a church or other religious institution where (i) greater than 50% of the gross annual revenue (as reflected on the entity’s most recent federal tax filing (2019)) is derived from the school, child care facility or other educational business and (ii) the grant funds will be used only for eligible costs and expenses directly related to the school, child care, or other educational organization, and no portion of the Grant Award will be used for any normal profit or overhead of the church or other religious institution; 
  • a financial business or organization primarily engaged in the business of lending, such as a bank, finance company or factoring company; 
  • a business or organization engaged in any activity that is illegal under federal, state or local law; 
  • a business or organization of a prurient sexual nature, including a business or organization which presents live performances of a prurient sexual nature or a business or organization which derives directly or indirectly more than de minimis gross revenue through the sale of products or services, or the presentation of any depictions or displays, of a prurient sexual nature; 
  • a business or organization engaged in any socially undesirable activity or activity that may be considered predatory in nature such as rent-to-own businesses or check cashing businesses; 
  • a business or organization that restricts patronage for any reason other than capacity, specifically any business that illegally discriminates patronage; 
  • a speculative business or organization, meaning a business or organization for the sole purpose of purchasing and holding an item until the market price increases or other business or organization principally engaged in risky activity for the chance of an unusually large profit, including but not limited to, (i) oil wildcatting, (ii) dealing in stocks, bonds, commodity futures, and other financial instruments and (iii) mining gold or silver in other than established fields; 
  • an eligible nonprofit performing arts organization (as defined in Section 6(a)(i) above) that is affiliated (as such term is defined in 13 C.F.R. § 121.103) with another Applicant; 
  • a business, organization, franchise, or location of which any executive director or equivalent senior managing officer of Applicant, or in the case of a fiscal sponsor, such Applicant’s eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization, has already applied for and received a grant under the Program; 
  • a publicly traded corporation, or a business or organization majority owned and controlled by a publicly traded corporation; or 
  • a business or organization that does not have (1) multiple clients providing income to the business or organization as demonstrated by multiple W-9 forms, invoices, purchase orders or (2) a business plan clearly stating a pathway to obtaining multiple clients and/or creating two (2) or more jobs. 

 

What documents are needed to apply for the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program?

For Lendistry to review an application, applicants must upload all the following required documentation:

  1. Applicant Certification (Download Here);
  2. Government-Issued Identification;
  3. Proof of Tax-Exempt Status (501(c)(3));
  4. Proof of Business Organization (at least one of the following):
    • Articles of Incorporation;
    • Articles of Organization;
    • Business License;
    • Fictitious Business Name;
  5. Proof of Revenues (unaltered and filed 990 tax returns for 2019) or RRF-1 as filed with the Department of Justice (for 990-N filers);
  6. Fiscal Sponsor Agreement (if applicable); and
  7. California Form STD 213

Who can submit an application for this Program?

Eligible nonprofit performing arts organizations (see Definitions) can submit an application for the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program on their own or through their contractual fiscal sponsor.

Fiscal sponsors applying on behalf of an eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization must complete the application process on their behalf (i.e., the fiscal sponsor is the applicant, not the eligible, fiscally- sponsored organization).

If a fiscal sponsor submits an application for multiple eligible, fiscally-sponsored organizations, grant funding will be determined independently based on each organization’s own qualifications.

Can one applicant submit multiple nonprofit organizations?

An eligible organization or fiscal sponsor applying for their own organization, may submit only one application.

A fiscal sponsor may submit multiple applications; however, only one application per fiscally-sponsored organization is allowed. Submitting multiple applications for one fiscally-sponsored organization may be detected as potential fraud and disrupt the review process for your application.

Is an applicant required to use a referral partner?

No. This Program’s partners are available only if you need additional assistance with the program guidelines, submitting an application, navigating Lendistry’s Portal, and more.

To learn more about the Program’s partners, please visit: https://canonprofitperformingarts.com/partners/

Fiscal Sponsors

What other documents are required if a fiscal sponsor applies for a grant award on behalf of an eligible organization?

A fiscal sponsor applying for a grant award on behalf of an eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization is required to submit the following documents in addition to those required by all Program applicants:

  1. Fiscal Sponsor Agreement (The Fiscal Sponsor Agreement must have been in place prior to June 1, 2019.)
  2. California Form STD 213

What are the requirements for organizations operating under a group exemption?

All fiscal sponsors and their eligible, fiscally-sponsored organization(s) must have begun operating in California and registered with the Secretary of State prior to June 1, 2019. An applicant (Sponsee) operating under a group exemption (Sponsor) must:
1. Submit the Fiscal Sponsor’s Proof of IRS Tax Exemption Status (501(c)(3));
2. Have their own Employee Identification Number (EIN);
3. Provide their Sponsor’s federal tax return; and
4. Be registered with the California Department of Justice (DOJ).

Can a fiscal sponsor submit an application for their own organization?

A fiscal sponsor may submit an application for their own organization if:

  1. The fiscal sponsor meets the program’s eligibility requirements independently from the organization(s) they sponsor; and
  2. The fiscal sponsor’s qualifying total revenue includes their generated and contributed revenue as a qualified nonprofit performing arts organization and the revenue they receive as a fiscal sponsor.

Do fiscal sponsors need to meet the Program’s NAICS code requirement?

No. A fiscal sponsor’s own organization does not need to meet the program’s the NAICS code requirements. However, their organization will be ineligible to apply for a grant under this Program.

Can a for-profit fiscal sponsor submit an application on behalf of an eligible nonprofit performing arts organization?

No. Fiscal sponsors must have a (501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Status.

Are fiscal sponsors required to be registered with the California Department of Justice?

All fiscal sponsors must be registered with the California Department of Justice.

Fiscal sponsors that have not registered must do so in order to submit an application for their organization, if eligible, or fiscally-sponsored organization(s) and provide the following documents:

  1. CT-1 filed for the Fiscal Sponsor
  2. RRF-1 filed for 2019 for the fiscally-sponsored organization(s)
Application Guidance

How can Lendistry's Portal be accessed if an applicant's login credentials are not working?

To log into Lendistry’s Portal, applicants will need to use the email address, password, and mobile number they registered at the beginning of the application process. Please review the Program and Application Guide for reference.

If you are an applicant of the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program and unable to sign in to Lendistry’s Portal with your registered credentials, review the following steps to troubleshoot your account.

    1. If you do not know the email address or mobile number you registered, please contact our Call Center at 866-759-5320 (Monday – Friday: 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. PST).
    2. If you do not know your password, you will need to reset it yourself. Our Call Center does not have access to your password. Click HERE to reset your password.

Lendistry’s Portal can be accessed HERE.

Do grant awards with the California Nonprofit Performing Arts Grant Program have to be repaid?

No. The award is a grant and is not a loan that is required to be repaid. However, the State of California has the right to seek all available remedies for failing to comply with the terms and conditions of the grant, including, without limitation, if the grantee was ineligible, used funds for unauthorized purposes or made false statements in connection with the grant application.

Are grant proceeds taxed?

Yes. Recipients of a grant award will receive tax information related to their grant proceeds, which will need to be reported on their tax returns. Please consult with a tax professional for additional information.

How will applicants be notified to confirm Lendistry has received all of their required information and documentation to be considered for a grant award?

Applicants will receive a confirmation email from [email protected] to confirm their application has been received. If more information or documents are needed, Lendistry may contact applicants by email, phone, and/or text (if authorized) to verify the information you submitted. Lendistry is available to assist applicants in understanding what business information is needed and how to upload documents.

Confirmation emails come from Lendistry at [email protected] If an applicant did not receive a confirmation email after submitting their application, we advise the applicant to check their spam folder for emails from [email protected] and add the email address to their email account’s safe sender list.

TIP: Place “Lendistry” in the search bar.

How can applicants check the status of their application during the review process?

You can check the status of your application at any time by signing into Lendistry’s Portal using the username, password, and mobile number that you registered. Once signed in, the status will appear on the dashboard. 

Lendistry’s Portal can be accessed HERE.

How are applicants approved or declined for grant funding?

The application process for this Program contains multiple stages of validation. Eligible applicants must first meet the Program’s minimum eligibility requirements in order to be considered for a grant. Important Note: Meeting the minimum eligibility requirements does not guarantee a grant award.

Eligible applicants will then go through the final stages of validation to determine if they are approved or declined for funding.

Lendistry will notify all applicants of their determination.

 

What forms of government-issued photo ID will be accepted?

Applicants will be required to verify their identity using Persona by uploading a picture of a valid government-issued photo ID.

Acceptable forms of government-issued photo ID include:

  • Driver’s License;
  • United States Passport; and 
  • State ID.

Applicants will also need to take a selfie using a device with a front-facing camera to complete the Persona verification.

What is Persona?
Persona is a third-party platform utilized by Lendistry in its fraud prevention and mitigation process. The Persona platform enables Lendistry to verify an individual’s identity and protect against identity spoofing by automatically comparing the individual’s selfie to their ID portrait with a 3-point composite and biometric liveness checks.

Do applicants need to submit documentation to verify ownership? Do multi-owner companies have to submit for one owner or all?

An application must be submitted by the majority owner of the business. Applicants will need to certify that the application is being submitted on behalf of the applicant by the majority owner of the applicant as a condition to receiving the grant. Only one business owner can apply.

Who is a permissible “authorized representative” for executing a nonprofit’s certification and grantee agreement?

A nonprofit’s business certification and grantee agreement must be executed by the organization’s executive director or equivalent senior managing officer of the organization. This individual must be the same individual listed on the organization’s Statement of Information filed with the state.

Can an applicant be reexamined if they were deemed ineligible for this grant program?

Only one reexamination request is allowed for each application.

You will be noitfied via email if you are ineligible for this grant program. If there was an error in your web application form or in the documentation provided as part of your application, please contact our dedicated Call Center at 866-759-5320, Monday through Friday between the hours of 7:00 am-7:00 pm PST within five (5) days of receiving this email. Please note that this will not guarantee a reversal of your ineligibility. Additional documents and information may be requested to further validate your application.

If Lendistry does not hear from you within this timeframe, your ineligibility will be sustained and your file will be closed.

Can an applicant be reexamined if they were declined for a grant award?

Only one reexamination request is allowed for each application.

You will be notifiied via email if you are declined for a grant award. If you believe you were declined in error, please contact our dedicated Call Center at 866-759-5320, Monday through Friday between the hours of 7:00 am-7:00 pm PST within five (5) days of receiving this email. Please note that this will not guarantee a reversal of your decline determination. Additional documents and information may be requested to further validate your application.

If Lendistry does not hear from you within this timeframe, your decline determination will remain permanently and your file will be closed.