Cultural Facilities Funding & Grant Process

To be considered for funding, you are responsible for first approaching your area's representatives in the General Assembly. You can find the names of your legislators and their contact information by visiting the Ohio House of Representatives and Ohio Senate websites. Present your comprehensive project plan and estimated budget.

Projects that are successful in securing support are appropriated a specific amount of funds in a line item in Ohio’s biennial capital budget. Eligible projects are then "assigned" to the Commission for funding oversight.

There is no set grant amount, but project sponsors are required to match state funds at a ratio of 1 local dollar for every 2 state dollars.

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Grant Documents


Grant Process

Although each project is unique, a cultural facilities project follows this general process:

  1. A community or community organization, known as the project sponsor, decides it needs to expand or improve its facilities or build a new facility.
  2. The community or community organization approaches its legislators to request funding for a project in the biennial capital improvements bill. Capital bills are typically enacted by the Legislature in the spring or fall of even numbered years.
  3. The General Assembly and Governor appropriate, or devote, funding for the community's project in the biennial capital improvements bill and assign it to the Commission for funding administration.
  4. The project sponsor contacts Commission staff for a checklist of required documentation for project approval. Subsequently, Commission staff may schedule a site visit with the organization to tour the facility and to discuss key aspects of the project with the project sponsor.
  5. When all of the required documents have been submitted to the Commission, Commission staff analyzes and reviews them. It is important for the project sponsor to work with Commission staff to ensure the project meets standards set forth by the Ohio Revised Code, the capital bill, the Commission, and the bond issuer and to determine how the state can best contribute to a successful project. Commission staff will draft all necessary legal documents when they are prepared to recommend the project for approval.
  6. Once all the standards are met, Commission approvals have been obtained, and Commission documents are executed, funds will be reimbursed to the project sponsors on a pro-rated basis. The Commission's reimbursement is based on the amount of state funds divided by the total construction cost, times the dollar amount of completed construction being invoiced.
  7. At the end of the state-funded construction phase(s), the facility opens or reopens to the public, and the project sponsor recognizes the state’s involvement.
  8. The state continues to monitor the facility and the project sponsor's overall financial situation for the duration of the bond funding period, which is typically 10 years. Project sponsors must provide information to the Commission as changes occur or on a requested basis as stated in the legal agreements.