Supporting Arts Grant Program

Who Can Apply


Applicants must be either an arts organization or a municipal arts department.  For the purpose of the Supporting Arts grant program, an arts organization and a municipal arts department are defined below.

Arts Organization

An arts organization is defined as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that 1) has the arts explicitly stated as a center part of its core mission, vision, focus and legal purpose; 2) creates, performs, presents or promotes
artistic programming and/or services* and 3) at least 51 percent of its annual expenditures are allocated specifically to its artistic programming and/or services. 

*Artistic activities shall include, but are not limited to, music, theater, dance, painting, sculpture, literature, films and allied arts and crafts.  

Additional criteria required for an Arts Organization applying to the Supporting Arts grant program:

  • Have minimum annual operating expenses of $5,000
  • Have documentation of income and expenses for the organization's last completed fiscal year
  • Be registered with the CT Secretary of the State to do business in Connecticut as a legal nonprofit entity and be in Good Standing
  • Primary place of business and operations in Connecticut

Municipal Arts Department
A municipal arts department is a Connecticut municipal government entity, such as a Commission on the Arts, Department of Cultural Affairs or other specifically designated office or entity with an official designation to conduct and/or support artistic programming and/or services for the residents of the municipality.

Additional criteria required for a Municipal Arts Department applying to the Supporting Arts grant program (updated 7.11.22):

  • Have a dedicated allocation in the municipal budget for arts and cultural support, artistic programming, and/or services
  • Have at least one (1) individual, employed by the municipality, who is responsible for the fiscal management and oversight of the arts budget, including the municipal allocation and outside funding sources (i.e. grants, private contributions)
  • Have minimum annual operating expenses of $1,000
  • Have a council/committee of residents assigned to and responsible for conducting artistic programming and/or services

First-time (New) Applicants

A first-time (new) applicant to the Supporting Arts program must confirm eligibility before applying.  Send a copy of the organization's Bylaws, Articles of Incorporation and IRS determination letter to the program's manager Rhonda Olisky at


  • An organization with a fiscal sponsor.  An arts organization must have its own 501(c)(3) tax exempt status to apply to Supporting Arts
  • Organizations that receive Directed Local Funds (a.k.a Line Items) in the Biennial State Budget
  • Organizations allocated legislatively directed carry-forward funds in the FY22-23 State Budget
  • Organizations allocated American Rescue Plan Act funds in the FY22-23 State Budget
  • COA's Designated Regional Service Organizations