General Policies & Legal Requirements
The Nevada Arts Council (NAC) complies with all state and federal laws and regulations concerning civil and human rights, including Title IV of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975. NAC ensures that its programs, grants and employment practices are free of any discrimination based on race, color, national origin, disability, sex, sexual orientation or age.
Making the arts accessible to Nevadans of all cultures and abilities, without prejudice to geographic or economic status, is a priority for the Nevada Arts Council. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act states, in part, that “no otherwise qualified person with a disability... shall solely by reason of their disability be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
The NAC encourages its grantees and partners to view accessibility as both a philosophic commitment and a business practice. Methods to address diversity in your community include involving individuals from diverse populations and/or organizations in the planning, implementation, evaluation and follow-up of a program. By making Nevada’s arts and cultural programs, activities, information and facilities accessible and usable to all people, with and without disabilities, we open the door to a new and expanded audience of participants, patrons and advocates.
For information on requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or how to make your programs and facilities more accessible, download the Design for Accessibility Handbook along with an Arts Accessibility Checklist on the National Endowment for the Arts’ Accessibility homepage at arts.gov/artistic-fields/Accessibility/. This website provides information and links to Leadership Initiatives in Arts and Aging, Arts in Healthcare, Arts in Corrections, Universal Design and Careers in the Arts. It also features award-winning accessibility programs implemented across the nation. Arts for All Nevada provides arts programs for all Nevadans, including those with some form of disability. Visit: artsforallnevada.org or call 775.826.6100.
NAC believes that artists should be compensated for their expertise and services rendered. NAC also encourages the employment of artists who are Nevada residents.
Organizational grant recipients may be subject to an on-site audit performed by NAC staff at least once every three years. NAC staff will notify grantees of audit date at least 45 days in advance. If a recipient receives $750,000 or more in federal funds, the federal government requires recipients to submit a Single Audit report to the NAC for the year in which NAC funds were received and spent. As part of the Final Report, NAC requires all Partners in Excellence Grant recipients to submit a copy of pertinent page(s) of the IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ from the previous year, or year-end fiscal reporting. This is to determine the appropriate level of PIE funding. Partners in Excellence Grant Tier II: Level 6 must submit a Financial Review Statement with the Final Report. For exceptions to this rule, please contact the NAC staff.
BUDGETS FOR GRANT CATEGORIES
The Nevada Arts Council determines the funds available for each grant category at the beginning of each fiscal year. Funding levels are based on both the number of applicants in a category and the requested funding for that category, as well as overall available funds. The Nevada Arts Council is funded through a combination of sources, including State of Nevada General Funds, Division of Tourism Lodging Tax, the Live Entertainment Tax, and National Endowment for the Arts grants. Fiscal staff determines funding levels as described above; the NAC Board has final approval of all grant funding recommendations.
While a community is most commonly defined in terms of geography, it may be defined in terms of common interests as well. Examples of communities include, but are not limited to: a neighborhood, a town or other municipality, a county or multi-county area within or across state lines, or a group of individuals and organizations that share a common heritage or interest in a common artistic discipline.
State and federal funding (public funding) has been instrumental in the formation of arts and cultural organizations and institutions in Nevada and across the country for decades. This public funding remains vital to the health of our arts industry and in providing access to arts experiences for our citizens. However, public funding for the arts remains vulnerable because many Americans are unaware of its impact on the individual, our schools and our communities. NAC grants are made possible with appropriations from the State of Nevada and funding from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). It is required that acknowledgement of this support is prominently included on grantee websites, and included in all grantee publicity and printed materials – programs, catalogues, posters, news releases and advertisements. It is the grantee’s responsibility to contact the NAC if they do not have a website or cannot display the required logos and text on its website or printed materials. All grant recipients will receive written information regarding proper and required acknowledgement of NAC and other funders in the Grant Management Packet. Electronic versions of current NAC and NEA logos are available on the NAC website at: nac.nevadaculture.org. Credit Language: This program has been funded, in part, by the Nevada Arts Council, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
The information requested of all NAC grant applicants (in grant applications and Final Report forms) is critical for state and national cultural policy development and planning. Both the NEA and the NAC use this data to determine trends, establish statistical data and develop budget requests. This data is also the foundation for the NAC budget request, which is presented to the Governor’s Office and the Nevada State Legislature every biennium. Section Five of the National Foundation for the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965, as amended, authorizes both of these national endowments to request such information for use in application processing and in trend analysis and statistical research. As this complies with the Privacy Act of 1974, the NAC responds to NEA requests for information.
DUNS NUMBER, REQUIREMENT OF
All organizational applicants must have a DUNS number, which can be obtained for free at dnb.com. The DUNS number and organization should also be registered with the System for Award Management (SAM) at sam.gov and maintain an active SAM registration throughout the life of the grant. The Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number is a unique ninecharacter identification number. DUNS numbers are required of all Federal grant recipients and provided by the commercial company Dun & Bradstreet. The federal government and other organizations such as Americans for the Arts use the DUNS number to assess the economic impact of nonprofit organizations. The number also provides consistent name and address data for electronic grant applications. Obtaining a DUNS number is easy and there is no charge.
FISCAL AGENT, USE OF
Incorporated nonprofit organizations that have filed for, but have not yet received, tax-exempt status through the Internal Revenue Service may apply to certain grant categories through a Fiscal Agent, which is an incorporated nonprofit tax-exempt organization that is eligible to apply for NAC grants. This Fiscal Agent becomes the legal applicant of record, redistributes the grant funds to the project coordinating organization, and is responsible for all the requirements of the specific grant category. This includes contracts, fiscal records and final reports. Any correspondence to the NAC regarding a Fiscal Agent-sponsored application or grant must be submitted either by the Fiscal Agent or jointly by the Fiscal Agent and the project coordinating organization. Organizations intending to use a Fiscal Agent must contact the NAC prior to submitting a grant application. A copy of the letter of acknowledgment from the IRS stating that an application for tax-exempt status has been filed must be submitted to the NAC with the application. The use of a Fiscal Agent does not release the project coordinating organization from responsible or accountable behavior. NAC strongly recommends that the Fiscal Agent maintain separate financial accounts for all projects it represents, and that the project coordinating organization and the Fiscal Agent sign a letter of agreement or a contract that clearly details the legal responsibilities and obligations of each party. Acting as a Fiscal Agent does not jeopardize the Fiscal Agent’s own grant applications. Individual artists do not need to apply through a Fiscal Agent.
Why the revision? We have used the term “applicant” for the organization not yet established as a tax-exempt, nonprofit entity. The legal applicant is the Fiscal Agent (with all fiduciary responsibilities). The above changes attempts to clarify the difference between the applicant Fiscal agent and the ‘project coordinating organization’ that is in the process of receiving nonprofit status.
FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
NAC recognizes the need for public support of the arts and understands the responsibilities that accompany the allocation of public funds. At the same time, NAC advocates for and defends the right of free speech for all citizens under the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.
In-kind contributions include donated goods, services, facilities and personnel, and demonstrate a broad base of support for your projects. Though you are receiving them free of charge, all in-kind contributions have a cash value. It is critical that you document the actual cash value of all in-kind contributions provided by businesses and individuals. The NAC Final Report will require actual figures for in-kind contributions. We recommend that you request a statement of donation or an invoice with “in-kind” noted on it from any entity that provides you with in-kind goods and services to keep for your records.
Incorporation in Nevada means recognition of an organization’s corporate by-laws and articles by the Secretary of State in Nevada. This must be done before filing for tax-exempt status with the Internal Revenue Service. Procedures for becoming a nonprofit organization are not complicated and are available from the office of the Nevada Secretary of State in Carson City at 775.684.5708 or Las Vegas at 702.486.2880 or online at nvsos.gov. Organizations are encouraged to seek professional advice from an attorney or an accountant.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY, OWNERSHIP OF
The NAC does not own, collect royalties on or hold copyrights to artistic products resulting from its grants nor will it take any action on behalf of the grantee to protect the grantee’s intellectual property rights. The NAC does, however, request from all its grantees the right to reproduce and use documentation of such products for educational, promotional, official or noncommercial purposes, both electronically and in print.
In most NAC grant categories, organizations must match in cash, dollar for dollar (1:1) NAC grant funds that are awarded. Matching funds may be anticipated by the applicant at the time of application submission, but must be received by the end of the grant period and by the time the cash request form is submitted to the NAC by the grantee. Matching funds are identified when requesting funds both by: 1) listing the Source and Amount on the Cash Request Form and by: 2) providing accepted support materials with submission of the Cash Request Form. Accepted Matching Funds Back-up Documents are: a) most recent bank statement; b) Grant Award Letter from another, non-federal/state entity; c) donation log; d) in-kind verification form. Other state general funds or federal funds may not be used as a match for NAC funding.
MULTIPLE GRANT APPLICATIONS
- Recipients of any annual, quarterly or rolling grant may also apply for Professional Development Grants, per eligibility requirements.
- Organizations receiving an Arts Learning Project, Jackpot, Partners in Excellence or Project Grant, may also submit applications for Artist Residency Express and Nevada Circuit Rider Grants, as long as the grant funding is not used for the same project.
- Recipients of an annual grant may not receive a quarterly grant in the same fiscal year, but may apply for any number of rolling grants (per eligibility standards).
- Recipients of a quarterly grant may not receive an annual grant in the same fiscal year, but may apply for any number of rolling grants (per eligibility standards).
A partnership should represent a core group that is committed to working together and providing resources toward specific goals. Effective partnerships combine existing resources in innovative ways, create opportunities that previously did not exist and enable individual partners to advance their own priorities while working toward common goals. Partnerships may be new or they may already be in existence. They may include arts organizations, schools and educational organizations, businesses, government agencies, religious organizations, and civic and community groups. NAC encourages grantees and applicants to think as broadly as possible about potential partnerships. A funder, venue or project beneficiary should be considered a partner only if it actively participates in the overall project.
NAC grant recipients are required to keep a copy of their original grant application, financial records, supporting documents, statistical records and all other records pertinent to NAC grants for a minimum of three years after the end of the project. Grant funds may be considered taxable income. Please consult with qualified tax consultants.
RELIGIOUS ART AND ACTIVITIES/PROJECTS
NAC funds cannot be used for projects (by an organization, institution or individual) with implicit religious content that may be perceived as advancing a religious purpose. Religious organizations may apply for NAC funds to support arts or cultural activities or programming where related artistic expression is a primary focus. The project cannot occur or coincide with a religious activity or service, or be viewed as attempting to convert people to a particular religious viewpoint.
TAX EXEMPTION, 501(C)3 STATUS
TAX EXEMPTION, 501(c)3 STATUS Tax exemption is a classification of the Internal Revenue Service. An organization may file itself, although the advice of an accountant or an attorney is recommended. Advice may also be obtained from the IRS at irs.gov.
TERMINATION FOR NON-APPROPRIATION
All NAC grants are subject to and contingent upon sufficient funds being appropriated, budgeted, and otherwise made available by the State Legislature and/or federal and other sources. NAC, as the granting authority, may reduce or terminate grant(s), and the grantee waives any and all claim(s) for damages, effective immediately upon receipt of written notice (or any date specified therein) if for any reason the granting agency’s funding from State and/or federal sources is not appropriated or is withdrawn, limited, or impaired.
For the purposes of NAC Grants Guidelines, an underserved area is defined by geographic isolation and/or limited access to quality arts resources and programs. Underserved people are those potential arts participants who may not be currently served by an organization’s or institution’s programs. Within these definitions, applicants are asked to identify their own underserved populations and definition.
VERIFICATION OF NONPROFIT, TAX-EXEMPT STATUS
An organization applying for NAC funds for the first time is required to submit a copy of its Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws (both required for nonprofit status) and its IRS approved letter of tax-exempt status.
VERIFICATION OF NEVADA RESIDENCY
An individual applying for NAC funds is required to submit evidence of 12 months of Nevada residency. Acceptable evidence includes a Nevada Driver’s License, utility bill, rental agreement, or bank statement showing the applicant’s full name, street address, and dated at least 12 months prior to application deadline.