Grant Application Process

Organizations or individuals who are applying to the Council for the first time are encouraged to submit a draft version of their application to be reviewed by a program manager. Draft applications should be submitted for review no later than three to four weeks prior to the deadline date.

Grant applications received by the Council are reviewed by a panel of Alabama residents and sometimes out of state experts. Artists, arts administrators, arts educators, arts volunteers and community representatives make up the panels that evaluate applications based on the review criteria. Panelists do not make actual funding decisions. They provide recommendations and feedback to the Council on the quality of each application.

A Public Hearing session is held for each deadline. Approximately two weeks before the hearing, letters are mailed to applicants inviting them to the Public Hearing. There are a limited number of slots available so applicants are scheduled on a first response/first come basis. Each applicant is allocated five (5) minutes to speak to the Grants Review Committee of the Council concerning their project request.

After reviewing the grant applications, panelist recommendations and recommendations from the Grants Review Committee, the entire board of the Council determine the final grant awards. The amount of the grant awards depend upon the availability of grants funds. Seldom are project requests fully funded. On an average, requests are funded at around 55% of the requested amount.

The Council notifies applicants of its funding decision by email, and the public through press releases. Within two weeks after receipt of the award letter, two copies of the contract are mailed along with an invoice for payment. Signed contracts and the invoice must be returned within 30 days after receipt. Failure to sign and return the contracts within 30 days may result in cancellation of the grant.

Final reports are due thirty days after the funded project is completed with the exception of projects with a September ending date. If the project contract has a September ending date and the project activities and/or expenditures will not be completed by September 1, the Request for Advance or Reimbursement Form must be completed and submitted before September 15 to the Grants Office (Click here for a link to the form). It is important to remember that your organization is still required to submit the final report through the eGrant system by October 10.

It is the responsibility of your organization to remember when final reports are due and to submit them in a timely manner. Delinquent final reports may result in grant cancellation and forfeiture of any grant balance.

If you have problems submitting your final report, have encountered a problem with your project that changes it from the scope of the project proposed in your application, or anticipate that your organization will not complete the project or request the full amount of the grant award, you must communicate with the appropriate program manager immediately.

The Alabama State Council on the Arts is a state agency which receives funding from the Alabama Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Therefore, it is important that your audience and elected officials know public funding helps bring them the project, exhibit or performance that they are enjoying so much. When you accept Alabama State Council on the Arts grant funds, you agree to acknowledge the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts in all advertising, news releases, printed programs and any other promotional or publicity materials.

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