Cultural Facilities Fund
Feasibility and Technical Assistance Grants
Grants to support the acquisition, design, repair, rehabilitation, renovation, expansion, or construction of nonprofit cultural facilities.
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Mass Cultural Council is happy to offer alternative formats, auxiliary aids, translation, interpretation, and other services necessary so that any individual can participate in Mass Cultural Council’s programs and services. Contact staff for help. To facilitate your request in a timely manner, please contact us at least three weeks before any Mass Cultural Council event or grant deadline.
How To Apply
Read the program guidelines, then review specific Feasibility and Technical Assistance grants requirements below.
Login or create a user profile in the new grants management system. (See details under “Application Instructions” below.)
Take the Eligibility Quiz to begin an application by clicking “Apply Now” under the desired Cultural Facilities Fund grant category.
Complete and submit the online application, including supplementary materials by December 14, 2023 at 11:59pm (ET).
Feasibility & Technical Assistance Grants Guidelines
Goals of the Feasibility & Technical Assistance Grants Program
The purpose of the Feasibility & Technical Assistance grants is to help cultural organizations get the objective information and analysis they need before they commit their organization’s energies and financial resources to a facilities project.
Types of Projects Funded
Types of planning and technical assistance may include but are not limited to: architectural and engineering plans, business plans and market research as it relates to a new facility, capital campaign feasibility studies, comprehensive facility maintenance plans, accessibility studies, energy efficiency/green building studies, and overall feasibility studies for a new facility.
Feasibility & Technical Assistance Grant funds are not available for non-facilities-related planning efforts (such as an overall organizational strategic planning); regular operating activities; ongoing staff positions; fundraising or marketing implementation activities; or publications.
The Cultural Facilities Fund statute establishes five threshold review criteria for all grants. All projects must provide evidence that they meet these five statutory criteria to be considered for a Cultural Facilities Fund Grant.
- The project is an “eligible project”.
- There is a demonstrated community need for the project*.
- The project benefits tourism in the local area**.
- There is a demonstrated financial need for a grant.
- There is demonstrated local support for the project*.
* “Community need” and “local support” can be addressed in terms of your cultural organization and/or programming.
**Tourism is defined as: “a person traveling 50 miles or more one way to a destination or who stays overnight”.
The specific criteria by which applications will be reviewed are:
Quality of Planning:
- Evidence that this is the logical next step in the organization’s overall facilities planning efforts.
Quality of Implementation:
- Evidence that feasibility and planning consultants have been identified.
- Evidence that a comprehensive and appropriate scope of services has been identified for the planning exercise.
- Evidence that planning consultants are qualified.
- Submission of a complete and clear planning/feasibility budget
A complete application constitutes the submission of the online application, including supplementary materials by the final deadline of December 14, 2023 at 11:59pm (ET).
All applicants should submit their applications through the online system. To create a profile in the system you must have an email address, which will be your username.
If you have previously applied for a Mass Cultural Council grant using your email address, you may have a profile in the system already. Here’s how you can check to see if you already have a user profile:
- Go to the online system and click “Forgot Password”.
- Once you submit your email address, you will receive an email with a temporary password and a link to the site.
- Copy the password to use on the login page, you will then be prompted to create a new password.
- If you do not receive an email, you do not have an account and you should create one (see below), or you can contact the grants help desk for assistance.
If you have not applied to Mass Cultural Council before and/or do not already have a user profile, complete a registration in the grants management system.
- Go to the online system and click “Register”.
- On the next page select “Organization” to register your organization.
- Your organization may already have a record in the system. Use the Organization name field to find and select your school or organization, then provide your contact information.
- If your school or organization’s name is not listed, click the link at the top of the page to register your school or organization manually. There you will also provide your own contact information as well.
- After completing the registration, you should receive an email to activate your account. The account must be activated within 24 hours. After clicking the activation link, you will be prompted to create a new 8-digit password.
I. Eligibility Quiz
Cultural Facilities Fund applications no longer have an Intent to Apply process. The first step to beginning an application is taking the Eligibility Quiz. This will help ensure your organization is eligible to apply to this program.
If your organization is eligible, the next page will bring you to the full application.
You do not need approval from Mass Cultural Council to continue with the application. Mass Cultural Council staff will contact you if any eligibility issues are identified.
If you don’t meet the criteria in the Eligibility Quiz, the grants management system will notify you that this program isn’t a good fit.
- Complete the online application, including any updates or changes to the organization information in your user profile.
- Click the “Submit” button by the deadline, 11:59pm (ET) on December 14, 2023. You will receive an email confirming the submission. If you don’t receive the automated email receipt, go back to ensure the application has been submitted successfully. Be sure to save the PDF summary of your application for your records.
III. Supplementary Materials:
- Planning Budget. (Please list both the “Sources” and “Uses” in the planning budget and indicate if the Source funds are: “committed”, “pending” or “projected”. Also please indicate if the Uses are based on actual third-party bids or if the costs are in-house estimates). See a sample planning budget (XLS).
- Project Timeline.
- Scope-of-Services for planning consultants.
- Financial Information:
- Nonprofit Organizations
- Income statements and balance sheets since your last audit, accountant’s review, or 990.
- Audited financial or draft audit statements for the two most recent fiscal years. (If your organization’s annual budget is less than $500,000 and no audited financials are available, please provide 990s or the review statement by the accountant, or internally prepared income and expense statements and balance sheets for the two most recent years.)
- Municipalities: Facility-specific operating budgets for the last two years for the subject facility. Municipal audit statements are not required.
- Colleges and Universities:
- Facility specific operating financials for the last two years for the subject facility.
- Copy of the lease or deed, for your facility (not required if you are applying for a feasibility grant for a facility you do not lease or own yet).
- Images of the overall site as well as specific areas of work.
Optional Supplementary Materials:
At the end of the application, there will be an optional upload button. Feel free to submit any additional materials you would like to share with the review panel regarding your project and its readiness to proceed.