Underwood Announces Shuttered Venue Operators Grant Program Now Available to Illinois Businesses

April 26, 2021
Press Release
Through the American Rescue Plan, Underwood Helped Secure Additional Funding for Local Venue Businesses Hurt by COVID-19

WEST CHICAGO Today, Rep. Lauren Underwood (IL-14) announced that more help is here for Illinois businesses and jobs as the Small Business Administration’s Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program is accepting applications. Underwood helped secure additional funding for the program as part of the American Rescue Plan’s support for small businesses. The program includes a total of over $16 billion in grants for shuttered venues. Underwood recently met with Ron Onesti, Owner of Arcada Theatre in St. Charles during her American Rescue Plan tour to discuss resources like the SVOG program include in the legislation to help small businesses.  

“Across northern Illinois, venues that we love, like the Aracda Theatre in St. Charles and the Woodstock Opera House in Woodstock, have been forced to shut their doors during the pandemic. To ensure these beloved but shuttered venues can remain a part of our community, I championed resources in the American Rescue Plan to deliver the resources they need,” said Underwood. “The opening of the Shuttered Venue Operators Grants program is another pivotal step toward crushing this virus, getting people back in jobs and revitalizing our economy. These grants will help our local shuttered venue operators put paychecks back in workers’ pockets, avoid permanent closures, cover rent payments, and more.” 

Local venue operators can get more information on how to apply at SBA.gov HERE.   


Who Can Apply:  

·         Live venue operators or promoters 

·         Theatrical producers 

·         Live performing arts organization operators 

·         Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria 

·         Motion picture theater operators 

·         Talent representatives 

·         Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements 


Applicants must have been in operation as of February 29, 2020. A venue or promoter who received a PPP loan on or after December 27, 2020, will have the SVOG reduced by the PPP loan amount. Click here for more information about who can apply. 


Venue operates can use their grants for: 

·         Payroll costs 

·         Rent payments 

·         Utility payments 

·         Worker protection expenditures, and 

·         More 


Click here for a full list of how venue operators can use their grants.