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Federal Eligibility Requirements

NEA Big Read, Shakespeare in American Communities, and the GIG Fund are federally-funded programs managed by Arts Midwest on behalf of the National Endowment for the Arts. Applicants and grantees of these programs must abide by the following requirements unless otherwise.

Four people dressed in black, dancing in front of a white backdrop that is lit by red and blue lights.
Photo Credit: Harry Schwentker

The applicant organization must be a nonprofit 501c(3) organization, a unit of state or local government, or a federally recognized tribal community or tribe. Unfortunately, Arts Midwest cannot fund organizations that require fiscal sponsorship for federal programs.

All applicant organizations must have a Unique Entity Identifier or UEI. If you do not have a UEI number, visit this page for more information. A UEI number is free to acquire via the SAM.gov website.

  • The organization must compensate all professional performers, if applicable, and related or supporting professional personnel at no less than the prevailing minimum compensation. (This requirement is in accordance with the regulations issued by the Secretary of Labor in part 505 of Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Part 505 does not provide information on specific compensation levels.)
  • The organization must adhere to the American Disabilities Act and have a Section 504 Self-Evaluation on file. More resources are available in the Accessibility Center.
  • The organization must be able to comply with the federal policies and legal requirements, statutes, and regulations as stated in the Assurance of Compliance.
  • Suspension and Debarment Policy: Any entity that receives a federal award is subject to the suspension and debarment requirements (i.e., persons, organizations, or non-federal government agencies). Non-federal entities are subject to the non-procurement debarment and suspension regulations implementing Executive Orders 12549 and 12689, 2 CFR part 180. These regulations restrict awards, subawards, and contracts with certain parties that are debarred, suspended, or otherwise excluded from or ineligible for participation in federal assistance programs or activities. When you complete your application, you will be required to certify that your organization is not excluded or disqualified from receiving a federal award.



The following is a list of costs that cannot appear in budgets for federally funded programs. Neither the grant nor any match can be used to support these kinds of expenses. This is not an exhaustive list.

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Bad debt write-offs
  • Cash reserves/endowments
  • Capital improvement/construction projects (renovation costs of facilities or land)
  • Catering/food
  • Compensation to foreign nationals currently embargoed by the federal government (e.g., North Korea)
  • Costs to bring a project into compliance with federal award requirements
  • Charitable contributions
  • Fine/original art
  • Fines and penalties
  • First-class/business-class air travel differentials
  • Fundraising activities (e.g., reception costs)
  • Gifts, prizes, and awards
  • Goods or services for personal use or resale (concessions)
  • International travel
  • Lobbying
  • Memberships in airline travel clubs
  • Memberships in civic, social, community organizations or country clubs
  • Subgranting or regranting
  • Visa costs paid to the U.S. government
  • Vehicle purchase