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Scranton offering ARPA grants for arts community

City Hall in downtown Scranton
Kat Bolus, WVIA News
City Hall in downtown Scranton

The City of Scranton received millions of dollars from the American Rescue Plan Act, but the mayor says one group in particular has had trouble accessing funds they could use to rebuild.

“Many arts organizations were ineligible for the rescue plan grants we had out for businesses and nonprofits,” Mayor Paige Gebhardt Cognetti said. “Our team has worked really hard to tailor these grants to the arts community.”

Cognetti announced the new round of ARPA grants on Thursday at City Hall. The city has $500,000 available to artists and arts organizations that are either based in Scranton or can prove they directly serve Scranton residents.

Independent artists, writers and performers can apply, along with theater companies, musical groups and dance companies. They can receive grants of up to $45,000.

Cognetti said members of the Scranton Arts Committee helped create the grant structure. The city will hold a webinar on March 7 at 2 p.m. to go over the application process. Interested groups can join the webinar at bit.ly/scrantonarts.

The application will be on Neighborly at bit.ly/nblyscranton.

The city received a total of $68.7 million from the American Rescue Plan Act to respond to economic impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The arts were hit hard, and they’re still feeling that in ways that even a lot of other industries may have bounced back and they haven’t,” Cognetti said. “We’re excited to roll this out.”

Sarah Scinto is the local host of Morning Edition on WVIA. She is a Connecticut native and graduate of King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, and has previously covered Northeastern Pennsylvania for The Scranton Times-Tribune, The Citizens’ Voice and Greater Pittston Progress.

You can email Sarah at sarahscinto@wvia.org