Operational Grants: Large Organizations

The PLACE Project *

The PLACE Project *


To bolster the sustainability of the community’s cultural organizations, a system of operational grants is a priority for the cultural grants program. This system of institutional funding supports the Community Priorities and goals in the Community Cultural Plan within the “Support for Cultural Organizations” strategy. [Link  See Pages 19-20]


Operational grants may be used to cover day-to-day activities or ongoing expenses such as administrative salaries, utilities, office supplies, technology maintenance, etc., as well as for project costs, technology purchases, and professional development. Some restrictions apply, see Exclusions under “General Eligibility Requirements.”

Total Funds: $280,000

Awards: 4 @ $50,000* + 4 @ $20,000

Cycle: Triennially (Every year for three years)

* Note: During the first transitional cycle The Dairy and BMoCA have been grandfathered into the process and will be reviewed using different criteria.


  • Cultural organizations with annual revenues greater than $200,000 (according to the latest 990 tax documents made available on the IRS website) are invited to apply.
  • Once an applicant is approved to receive an Operational Grant, the approval would be valid for three one-year terms.
  • Reporting twice a year, the organizations will be responsible for providing the BAC with necessary information to track progress on their stated evaluation. Due to the rules of the City budget, the commitment is made for only one year at a time. At the end of each year, the BAC will certify that the grant continues into the next year.
  • At each November meeting of the BAC, when the city budget is identified, staff will build recommendations on allocations for the following year. This may include increases or decreases to the award allocations for grant recipients in proportion to the overall change of the budget of the Office of Arts Culture. At that time, the BAC may also choose to review specific organizations that may have defaulted on the terms of their award in order to advise staff to take action.
  • In 2018, as preparations begin for the next triennial cycle, a new roster of organizations to invite will be established and a new cycle initiated.
West Water Outlaws**

West Water Outlaws**

Eligibility Criteria

General Eligibility. Meets all general eligibility requirements.
Budget Threshold. Cultural organizations with annual revenues greater than $200,000.
Service Area and Programming. Must be able to demonstrate that a majority of the organization’s programming takes place in the City of Boulder and that the programming meets the criteria described in the Chapter 14-1-2 of the City of Boulder Revised Code. The organization must also demonstrate that they are headquartered in  Boulder and have been conducting this programming in Boulder for at least five years.
Non Profit Verification. Applicants must provide formal IRS documentation of their 501(c)3 status. This letter must be dated previous to the last five years. See a sample of this document.
Consistent Management. The organization must have consistent management with no planned or expected changes to leadership during the term of the funding.

Jury Evaluation Criteria

  • Capacity Building
  • Community Priorities
  • Proposed Outcomes and Evaluation Strategy


Deadline: Wednesday, January 6, 2016, 5pm (CLOSED)

December 7, 5:30-7:00 p.m. Grants Coaching Session (Canyon Theater, Main Library)
January 7 – 13 
    Staff review of grant applications
January 14 – 20    Grant Revisions by applicants (if necessary)
January 21 – February 4      Online review/scoring by Commissioners (reasons for scoring)
February 5      Grant scoring released on the arts department website
February 5 – 17     Applicants have time to prepare 3 minute optional presentation/case for their grant/answer questions
February 17       BAC Meeting- Applicant presentations; final decision on grant awards


To apply you must either sign up or log in on the grants system. NOTE: You must be signed in as an organization to see this application.

Applicant Login

Operational Grants (Large) Guidelines / Process
General Eligibility Requirements
Grant FAQs
Grants Tool/Application & Report Forms

* The PLACE Project. Image appears courtesy of North Boulder Art District, 2015. Photo by Paula Gillen.
** West Water Outlaws at the Fox Theater, Boulder. image appears courtesy of photographer Kristen Cohen, 2015.