Erie county cultural funding

Erie county cultural funding DEFAULT

Application process for 2022 Erie County arts and cultural funding program opens Monday

ERIE COUNTY, N.Y. — Eligible arts and cultural organizations in Erie County can begin applying for grant money on Monday, March 1.

The 2022 Arts and Cultural Funding Program is overseen by the Erie County Department of Environment and Planning in conjunction with the Erie County Arts and Cultural Advisory Board.

The new application will be almost identical to the 2021 application, but this year's process will be completed entirely online.

Online briefings will be held to walk applicants through the process. 

  • Level 1 Applicant Briefing: Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 6 p.m.
  • Level 2 Applicant Briefing: Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 6 p.m.
  • Level 3 Applicant Briefing: Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 6 p.m.
  • Alternate briefing for any level applicant: Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 12 p.m.

Level 1 applications may request up to $50,000. Level 2 applications may request more than $50,000 and up to $150,000, and Level 3 applications are for requests of over $150,000.

Organizations may not request a grant exceeding 20 percent of their operating budget.

All applications will be reviewed, but funding requests are not guaranteed. The review committee will look at things like a group's financial management, governance, and programming. 

Level 1 applications are due by 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, April 28. Level 2 and Level 3 applications are due by 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, May 5. 

Submission assistance is available until 4:30 p.m. each day.

Organizations must be located in and provide services in Erie County, and their primary mission must center around arts and culture. 

They must also have at least one year as a 501c3 organization to be eligible to apply. They must be able to submit a 990-N, 990-EZ, or 990 form to be eligible.  


2022 Erie County cultural funding application release, applicant briefings scheduled

Wed, Feb 3rd 2021 06:00 pm

The Erie County Department of Environment and Planning, in conjunction with the Erie County Arts and Cultural Advisory Board, will be kicking off the 2022 arts and cultural funding program with an application release on Monday, March 1.

As implemented last year, there are three application levels. The application this year will be almost entirely identical in content, but will be completed entirely online.

Applicants will be able to register for access to the applications starting on Feb. 18 at Only one account will be created per organization. This account should enable applicants to complete their applications in multiple sessions before submission, as well as be able to update submitted applications for future grant cycles.

As established in 2020, level one applications may request up to $50,000. Level two applications may request more than $50,000 up to $150,000. Level three applications are for requests of over $150,000. Grant requests may not exceed 20% of an organization’s operating budget.

Funding requests are not guaranteed; all applications will be reviewed, as before, based on their financial management, governance and programming, with funding distributed in accordance with available funds for the 2022 calendar year.

All organizations applying must have at least one year as a 501(c)(3) organization to be eligible to apply. They must be able to submit to the EACAB a 990-N, 990-EZ, or 990 form to be eligible. All attachments are required to be consistent with the organization’s federal and state nonprofit reporting requirements.

Level one applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, April 28, while levels two and three applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, May 5. Submission assistance is available until 4:30 p.m. each day.

The staggered deadline allows organizations more time to complete their applications and improves submission through the website.

Organizations meeting the stated eligibility requirements must submit their application online at Late or incomplete applications will negatively affect an organization’s application score. Submitted applications will be reviewed by the Erie Arts & Cultural Advisory Board and DEP staff.

Organizations are strongly encouraged to attend an applicant briefing. This year, in light of the new online format and COVID-19 considerations, three regular briefings will be provided through WebEx. Each of the regular briefings will focus on a single application level. DEP staff and EACAB board members will provide an overview of the application, a walkthrough of account registration and level-specific completion, and answer questions. Interested persons may attend more than one briefing (as usual, only one application per organization will be considered for funding).

Registration for briefings will open Feb. 18 at

The level one applicant briefing is 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 2. Level follows at the same night the next night, with level three the same time on Thursday.

An alternate briefing is scheduled for noon Thursday, March 11, for anyone unable to attend the level-specific briefings. The alternate briefing will provide an overview of the online application, but not a complete walkthrough. It will answer questions from attendees.

Contact Mariely Ortiz at 716-858-1916 or [email protected] if unable to attend, or if representatives require special accommodations.


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Erie County arts funding process to be simplified

Smaller arts and cultural organizations in Erie County will now have an easier pathway to apply for funding.

In years past, the application process to receive funding has been noted by community members as overwhelming and too time-consuming. The Erie County Department of Environmental Planning, in collaboration with Legislator April Baskin, have shortened the application process and will now offer mentorship sessions for interested groups.

Baskin said many organizations operate on a shoestring budget and need the help to sustain themselves.

“If they get an application that requires three and four long essays and an extensive review of both of their programming where essentially they're asking for less than $10,000 to be able to help see through their mission. If we know that the validity of this program is working, it is helping smaller communities,” Baskin said.

“A lot of these arts organizations that are focused on social justice, which is something that's the priority to myself, and I know, as a shared interest with the administration, we don't want them not completing the application to the best of their ability or struggling through the application, because the resources to complete the application just aren't there.”

The issue was brought to Baskin’s attention by the Frontline Arts Organization, which is made up of individuals who work with arts groups throughout Erie County.

“They met with me in late December. I reached out to Commissioner Hersey and the Department of Environmental Planning, who oversees the application process and within three weeks’ time, we all worked together to revise this application to make it a more easier process for these groups,” Baskin said. “So this is something that's going to be implemented immediately when the arts and cultural funding process for 2021 begins, which is just about a week or two weeks away.”

Baskin said the new process will cut to the chase while still verifying the legitimacy of the organizations applying. More information on the process can be found here.


Erie County Cultural Funding Program - Grants over $50,000

Erie County Arts and Cultural Advisory Board (EACAB)

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Predicted Deadline

The next cycle for this opportunity is predicted based on past data. If you save this grant, we’ll notify you if there are any changes.

Predicted deadline:May 5, 2022

Grant amount: More than US $50,000

Fields of work: Art & Culture Community Culture & Heritage

Applicant type:Nonprofit

Funding uses: General Operating Expense

Location of project: Erie County, New York

Location of residency: Erie County, New York


The Erie County Cultural Funding program provides annual General Operating Support grants to 501c3 arts and cultural organizations within the County. An application must be submitted each year for funding the following year. The funding is for the organization as a whole, not just a particular program/programs.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Funds are limited to current operating expenses including salaries, program costs, fringe benefits, rents, utilities, office supplies, and equipment.
  • Eligibility Requirements
    • Be located and provide services in Erie County
    • Be a 501(c)(3) organization with tax-exempt status (must be able to provide one (1) year of the required financial documents including record of tax filing, and information as a 501c3 organization)
    • Have at least ONE of the following definitions of a Cultural Organization as a primary mission of the organization:
      • An organization that operates on a countywide or recognizable community level, which by the nature of its cultural activities and/or collections, is unique, distinctive and of significant quality
      • An organization that provides visitors with access to programs and displays of the performing, visual, literary and media arts, and/or to exhibits and collections, which preserve and interpret our cultural, natural and scientific heritage
      • An organization that particularly serves the cultural needs of significant segments of the County population, thereby contributing to the quality of life in Buffalo and Erie County


  • Grant funds may NOT be used for or applied toward any capital project or improvement, nor as a set-off against accounts receivable.
  • No funds received shall be used for any service provided or activity performed outside Erie County.
  • Organizations such as social and/or multi-service, educational, athletic, after-school, or religious organizations for which cultural activity is not a primary purpose are not eligible.

Funding cultural erie county

Organizational Support

Erie Arts & Culture serves as the fiscal sponsor for multiple projects and organizations, offering our legal and tax-exempt status.

If you have a project in need of fiscal sponsorship please reach out to Patrick Fisher at [email protected] or by phone at (814) 452-3427 x105.

Previous and current fiscal sponsorships include:

Erie Asian Pacific American Association
The Erie APAA is a volunteer-led, organization dedicated to promoting and raising awareness of the diverse Asian Pacific cultures present in the greater Erie community through educational activities and cultural events.

Visit the website

Grounded Print and Paper Shop
Grounded Print and Paper Shop is an interdisciplinary, contemporary print and paper making studio located in Erie, PA. Their mission is to offer a safe, sustainable, collaborative, and inclusive creative space.

Visit the website

Footlights Theater
The Footlights Theatre Program was initiated in 1974 (back then it was called Students Summer Theater) by The Erie School District and City of Erie Parks and Recreation Department. It was developed as a vehicle to teach area youth about musical theatre through the production of a full-length musical show. The program is now produced by All An Act Theatre Productions and collectively sponsored by The City of Erie Parks and Recreation Department,  The Erie School District, and All An Act Theatre Productions.

Visit the website

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. TEDxErie, where x = independently organized TED event. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At our TEDxErie event, TEDTalks video and live speakers will combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group.

Visit the website

Erie County Poet Laureate 
Erie County Government, in cooperation with Edinboro University, Gannon University, Mercyhurst University and Penn State Behrend, started the Poet Laureate Initiative in 2009. Already it has received recognition for its impact on the arts in our region; receiving the Pennsylvania County Commissioners Association County Arts Award in 2011 and the National Association of Counties National Arts Award in 2012.

Visit the website

United Cultural Fund 2021 Mary O'Malley-Trumble from IBM

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