The Creative Economy Pilot Project is an initiative by the City of Sacramento to increase economic activity and improve public spaces through art, food, and technology initiatives. The City is offering $500,000 in microgrants up to $5,000 and larger grants up to $25,000 to support projects such as pop-up events, art installations, and street performances in Sacramento’s neighborhoods. Applications are due July 30, 2017. Prospective applicants are advised to review the Creative Economy Pilot Project Grant Guidelinesin their entirety before starting an application.
The types of projects the City envisions will be funded under the program include those that focus on: public art/installations, performing arts/music, Farm-to-Fork, urban tech, pop-ups, temporary activations, multi-purpose spaces, marketing/communications, youth/education, cultural equity, and underserved communities. However, applicants may propose any type of project that fits within the overall vision of the program. A review panel will competitively recommend projects for funding based upon each proposal’s potential impact, geographic need, and applicant capability.
Through the Pilot Project, the City is interested in catalyzing entrepreneurial initiatives that improve the quality and experiences of public spaces that have not been activated to their full potential. While creative placemaking has been visible in areas within the Central City, the opportunity exists to replicate this same energy and excitement beyond the Downtown/Midtown core. By providing financial support for these projects, the City will be able to capture key metrics, such as increased pedestrian and/or economic activity in areas where these projects are deployed.
The timing of the Pilot Project coincides with the City’s efforts to develop an integrated, place- based community revitalization and economic development plan. We expect arts and culture to play a significant role in any holistic approach that considers neighborhood-based assets, needs, and priorities. To that end, the Pilot Project funding allocation formula ensures that a minimum level of investment is made in each Council district through the program.
The City will hold an online workshop and an in-person workshop to provide an overview of the application process and provide prospective applicants an opportunity to ask questions about the Pilot Project.
Here are the answers to the most common questions that were asked during the public workshops:
Can I include insurance in my proposed budget? Is insurance an acceptable use of the grant?
Unfortunately, we've determined that insurance is not an allowable expense. The reason is, if selected to receive a grant, you will need to demonstrate proof of insurance prior to signing a grant agreement (contract) with the City and allowable expenses in the budget must occur after the date on the contract. That is, we are not able to reimburse grantees for expenses incurred prior to contract execution. However, you are permitted to incorporate insurance costs into your labor rate.
For example, if you are a sole proprietor, then you have "overhead" you must pay for out of pocket that would be inappropriate to charge directly to your clients/customers (e.g., health insurance, taxes, etc.). If you determined that your desired hourly labor rate was $25/hour but that your overhead was approximately 40% of your total income, then you would reasonably charge an hourly rate of $35/hour to your clients/customers to account for those expenses. The City considers this to be an acceptable business practice and an appropriate way to account for insurance costs without insurance being included as a separate line item in the proposed budget.
Can I apply for a project that occurs outside the City of Sacramento? Can I use the grant to fund work in the unincorporated area of Sacramento County?
No. The primary location of eligible projects must be within the City of Sacramento. On page 4 of the Grant Guidelines states: "Projects must be located in the City of Sacramento." Unfortunately, the unincorporated area of Sacramento County falls outside of City limits and is not an eligible location for projects under this program.
Do you have a list of properties where projects may be sited? Do you have a list of property owners who are willing to have projects sited in or around their buildings?