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General Operating Support

SEMAC General Operating Support operates on a two-year or biennium cycle. The application window for these grants opens on July 1 of odd-numbered years and the SEMAC Board of Directors considers applications on a case-by-case basis until the funding pool is exhausted. Qualified arts organizations who successfully apply during an odd-numbered year will receive an award of $5,000, and pending approval of their interim report, automatically receive $5,000 for the second year of the biennium.

In addition to the general eligibility requirements for SEMAC funding, small and medium arts organizations in the SEMAC Region that meet all of the following conditions are invited to apply for General Operating Support. Colleges and universities are not eligible.

  1. Been in existence and offering programming in southeastern Minnesota for at least three years.
  2. Established federal tax exempt 501(c)(3) or equivalent status.
  3. Total operating expenses less than $174,000 over the past four years.
  4. No overdue or unapproved final or interim reports from previous SEMAC grants.
  5. Did not receive Operating Support, or Community Arts Education Support, from the Minnesota State Arts Board (MSAB) within the past two fiscal years. Those currently awaiting a decision on future MSAB funding should contact the office for guidance on when to apply to SEMAC.

General Operating Support may be requested for staffing and salaries, equipment purchase, facilities and maintenance, or other administrative expenses. These grants never require matching funds, however, funds may not be requested or used for programming, program expansion, or any of these other prohibited expenses.

  • out of state travel or activities that take place outside the state of Minnesota
  • hospitality costs (for example, food or beverage costs for capstone events)
  • copyright or other legal fees
  • benefits, fundraisers, or regranting money
  • endowment funds
  • use in feasibility studies or lobbying
  • capital improvement or construction, or purchase of real property

All General Operating Support grants are authorized and monitored directly by the SEMAC Board of Directors, including contractual agreements, letters of thanks to state legislators, interim reports and final reports. The SEMAC Board also uses this information in conjunction with online applications when considering future funding for a particular organization.