The Cultural Arts Operational Support Program invests in arts and cultural organizations that offer artistic and cultural excellence through programming that is made available to the general public and visitors to San Antonio. The goal of the program is to support the celebration of extraordinary and innovative presentations that showcase artistic excellence and the multi-cultural diversity of the City of San Antonio.
- Investments will be made for two (2) years and based on an organization’s most recently filed 990 tax returns. Adjustments will be made to second year funding allocation based on the maximum investment allowed under these guidelines and determined by the most current IRS Form 990.
- The Cultural Arts Board (CAB) and/or staff have the option to recommend one year of funding
if the service levels or financial history of an agency is determined to be unstable or unsustainable.
- Continuation of annual investment is dependent on availability of funds and the continuation of an equivalent level of services and financial position of the funded organization.
- Organizations that apply for Cultural Arts Operational Support are not eligible for Festival & Community Celebrations and/or stART Place. An organization that receives funding in the Core Program category is eligible to submit applications for Technical and Economic Development Program.
Art and Cultural Organizations that apply to the Cultural Arts Operational Support Program must:
- Be an arts and/or cultural organization. An arts and/or cultural organization includes organizations whose mission (as articulated within its mission statement) and actual operation are the creation, education, preservation and/or presentation of arts and/or cultural programming including but not limited to music, dance, drama, literature, painting, printmaking, sculpture, folk arts, photography,
film and media arts;
- Have a business office address in the City of San Antonio accessible to the public.
(PO Boxes are unacceptable);
- Have programs whose intent and impact is to create, preserve and present relevant artistic programs that showcase San Antonio’s unique arts and culture experience;
- Be recognized and an active art or cultural 501(c)3 organization with a proven track record of at least two years of producing and presenting of arts and cultural activities;
- Be governed by board of directors/trustees that meets regularly;
- Have a salaried full or part-time administrator that is responsible for and authorized to address the contractual obligations of the City Contract and the business management of the organization. Verification of administrator employment is required at time of application;
- Be the primary presenter/producer of the work and are responsible for all aspects of its provision to the community. Applicants are not allowed to be fiscal sponsors;
- Have all culminating events open to the public and ensure accessibility for the disabled;
- It is mandatory to attend prescribed workshops to be eligible for funding in this category. At minimum, one (1) key representative from each organization will be expected to attend. Workshops will address application instructions, requirements and review process;
ORGANIZATIONAL MAXIMUM FUNDING AWARDS AND MATCH REQUIREMENTS
|Operating Budget Size
||Cash Match Ratio:
|Over $ 2 Million
||Up to 10% of actual operating expense budget
|$800,000 to $2 Million
||Up to 20% of actual operating expense budget
|Up to $800,000*
||Up to 35% of actual operating expense budget
|*Community Based Organizations in this budget range
||Up to 50% of actual operating expense budget.
||In kind contributions listed in an organization’s IRS Form 990 tax form will be allowed for computation of an organization’s total expense budget. The amount of the inclusion is limited to 50% of verifiable cash expense budget.
Verification of Arts-Related Budget
Budget verification means the actual arts related expenses from the last completed fiscal year as shown on the organization’s filed IRS Form 990. For organizations that are solely arts or cultural institutions their entire IRS Form 990 expense budgets will be accepted. For those organizations that have additional programmatic missions, social service, education, etc only those portions of the budgets that relate to the creation, presentation or preservation of arts or cultural programming will be accepted. Budget verification occurs every year for organizations receiving Cultural Arts Operational Support based on the two-year funding cycle.
Applicants must submit a current IRS Form 990 to verify the organization’s good standing with IRS regulations and requirements. No extensions will be accepted. Awards are for two (2) years, but are subject to annual budgetary adjustment to meet the adopted maximum award allowed by the adopted funding guidelines.
In addition and for informational purposes, all organizations must also submit a current, Board approved, financial statement to facilitate and determine the organization’s most current financial position.
Applications are reviewed through a competitive process and adhere to City Council adopted guidelines and review criteria. Each application goes through several tiers of review. First, they are reviewed for eligibility by staff. Second, independent panels and staff establish applications comments and scores. Third, Staff develops a funding recommendation that CAB reviews and after deliberation issues a preliminary funding recommendation. Fourth, CAB holds a subsequent meeting where appeals can be heard and then they issue a final recommendation. Fifth, the final recommendations are forwarded to City Council for their consideration and approval.
Application guidelines are made available on the Department for Culture and Creative Development website.
Staff conducts several workshops to provide guidance and instructions of guidelines and application process. It is mandatory that all potential applicants have staff attend at least one workshop in order to be eligible to submit
Electronic applications (narrative and support materials) are submitted to DCCD on-line and are required to meet one specific deadline. No application will be accepted after the deadline. Applicant receives acknowledgment of application receipt. Applications are forwarded to arts funding staff.
Applicants apply to be reviewed by one of three categories:
Museums, Visual Arts and Exhibition Institution - Organizations whose primary focus is the presentation, preservation or creation of visual art forms, artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, educational or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary.
Live Performance - Organizations whose primary focus is the presentation, preservation and/or creation of live performance, including, but not limited to: music, theatre, dance, and the spoken word.
Community Based Organizations - Small to mid-sized organizations that are deeply rooted in a community, often culturally specific, and whose mission or focus is to create, present and preserve artistic and culturally relevant programs that respond to the needs of economically or culturally underserved communities.
New applicants may be subject to scheduled DCCD staff site visits after the eligibility requirements are met to review various aspects of the organization’s operations.
STEP ONE: STAFF REVIEW
Staff reviews applications for completeness and eligibility. Staff may contact applicants if questions arise. Application materials are assigned and made electronically available to panelists about a month before the panel convenes.
STEP TWO: PANEL & STAFF REVIEW
Applications are reviewed in different categories by panels comprised of seven members, made up of one Cultural Arts Board member, two local peer experts and four experts from outside of the San Antonio area. All panels are assembled to ensure knowledge and experience in the area under review and diversity with regard to race, ethnicity, and artistic points of view. Panels will deliberate their final score in a public setting but applicants are not allowed to interact with the panels. Panels will rank each application based on two criteria including Artistic/ Cultural Excellence and Community Engagement and Audience Development. City shall require that no panelist have a conflict of interest with an applicant it is reviewing. Staff will review and rank applications on Financial Position and Administrative Capacity.
It is important that applicant organizations address these criteria in the narrative of their application.
Artistic/Cultural Excellence (50 points)
- Quality of the artists, professional staff, works of art and services supported by the organization and proposed programs.
- Demonstration of the artistic and cultural relevance of programs that support the San Antonio unique experience for local residents and visitors.
- Evidence of how artistic offerings further the development of the creative needs in the community and respond to SA2020 (increase access to and awareness of arts and cultural activities, downtown development, economic competitiveness, enhance quality of life in neighborhoods);
- Opportunities created through proposed arts and culture programs for initiating meaningful educational/community dialogue.
Community Engagement & Audience Development (35 points)
- Strategies for increasing and engaging culturally diverse audiences with excellent art;
- Evidence of innovative strategies that create meaningful change to develop new artistic experiences and audiences;
- Ability to engage underserved populations who have limited access and experience
with the arts;
- Strategies and relevant programs that further community engagement;
- Strategy for documenting and evaluating audience engagement and growth;
- Indication of fostering partnerships that promote engagement for locals and visitors;
- Presentation of a specific marketing/promotion plan, including budgeted allocation of dollars.
DCCD staff will evaluate and provide a financial score using support materials, site visits, and/or information on file and the following review criteria:
Financial Position and Administrative Capacity (15 points)
- Accurate Arts and Cultural Budget with evidence of a diverse base of financial support through earned income and other non City funding;
- Proven history of planned growth and innovation that support organizational stability;
- Evidence of a proactive Board governance structure, level of involvement and responsibilities;
- Confirmation of a formal strategy to manage administrative/fiscal challenges and/or potential changes in leadership and key staff positions;
- Effectiveness and efficiency in the organization’s operation and delivery of services;
- Past Contract Compliance, Performance Reviews and Fiscal/Programmatic responsibility, as applicable.
STEP THREE: FUNDING RECOMMENDATIONS
Staff develops funding recommendations for each application after all applications are reviewed and scored. Application panel comments, scores and funding recommendations are forwarded to applicant and the Cultural Arts Board. CAB convenes in a public accessible meeting to discuss each application and staff funding recommendations. Each applicant is given opportunity to present to CAB before CAB determines its preliminary funding recommendations. Staff forwards CAB’s preliminary funding recommendations to each applicant. Applicants are given an opportunity to submit a request to appeal if it meets the approved appeals guidelines (See page 6). CAB convenes in a second publically accessible meeting to discuss any appeals and to deliberate on final funding recommendations.
Considerations for Determining Funding Recommendations
- Applications scoring below 75 (scoring of 74.5 to 74.99 will be rounded up to 75) will not be eligible for funding through the Arts Funding Program; however, applicant may be qualified for other funding sources, if available.
- Dollars available;
- Applicant’s total scores (DCCD will consider all scores and comments provided by the panelists);
- Minimum and Maximum awards and matching requirements provided under these guidelines;
- Equity of programmatic service to ensure that dollars support a balance of artistic and cultural offerings to existing and new audiences;
STEP FOUR: CITY COUNCIL APPOVAL
- Staff forwards CAB’s final recommendations to City Council for final consideration and approval.