Welcome to the Division of Cultural Affairs Specific Cultural Project (SCP) Guidelines. We're glad that you are applying for a Specific Cultural Project grant from the Division. These guidelines are incorporated by reference into Rule 1T-1.036, Florida Administrative Code, and detail policies and requirements for the application and administration of Specific Cultural Project grants.

These guidelines do not apply to General Program Support, Fast Track, Cultural Facilities, or Cultural Endowment grants. For information about these grant programs, visit

Grant Forms

The following forms must be used in the administration of all grants in these guidelines and are hereby incorporated by reference and available from the Division at

# Title Form # Effective Date
1. Grant Application, General Program Support and Specific Cultural Projects CA2E145 4/2017
2. Grant Award Agreement CA2E142 4/2017
3. Final Grant Report CA2E004 4/2017

Program Description

The Specific Cultural Project (SCP) grant provides up to $25,000 to fund a specific cultural project, program, exhibition, or series. If the applicant is an organization, the grant activities must support the mission of the organization and further the state's cultural objectives.

The Division offers four proposal types:

Basic Eligibility

All applicants must meet the following basic eligibility requirements at the time of application.

  1. Have submitted no other applications for the General Program Support or Specific Cultural Project programs in the current application cycle (see application restrictions);
  2. Have the required legal status;
  3. Agree to comply with all application requirements:
    1. Complete all proposal activities within the grant period;
    2. Make programming and activities open and accessible to all members of the public (see accessibility and non-discrimination);
    3. Match the grant amount requested, at least dollar for dollar (see request amount and match requirements); and
    4. Include only allowable expenses in the proposal budget (see allowable and non-allowable expenses);
  4. Agree to comply with all grant administration requirements (see How to Manage Your Grants):
    1. Provide all information needed for the grant award agreement;
    2. Sign and return the grant award agreement within 30 days;
    3. Request approval for any changes to the awarded;
    4. Submit timely and accurate reports (see grant reporting);
    5. Maintain complete and accurate grant records (see maintaining grant records);
    6. Comply with the requirements of the Florida Single Audit Act; and
    7. Credit the State of Florida and Division of Cultural Affairs for funding (see crediting the Division);

In addition to these basic eligibility requirements, all applicants in non-compliance at the time of the deadline will be deemed ineligible. There are specific eligibility requirements for the Discipline-Based Museum, Discipline-Based Professional Theatre, Arts In Education, Underserved Cultural Community Development, Artist Performances on Tour, and Individual Artist application types.

Application Restrictions

"In order to equitably distribute limited state funding," the legislature mandated, in section 265.286(9), Florida Statutes, that each grant applicant may only submit one application each annual grant cycle. The legislature defined applicant or grantee as a "nonprofit, tax-exempt, Florida corporation" or a "local or state governmental entity, school district, community college, college, university, agency of state government, or artist engaged in or concerned with arts and cultural activities."

Based on this, an organization or artist may only submit one (1) Specific Cultural Project or one (1) General Program Support application for each annual grant cycle (July 1 - June 30).

To meet the legal status requirement, an applicant organization must be either a public entity or a Florida nonprofit, tax exempt corporation as of the application deadline. Exception: For the Arts in Education Artist Performances on Tour and Individual Artist funding categories ONLY, the applicant may be a solo artist or an unincorporated performing company (265.286 (8)(a)(b), F.S.). For-profit businesses are not eligible to receive state funds.

Public Entity
A Florida local government, entity of state government, school district, community college, college, or university. Private schools, private community colleges, private colleges, and private universities are not public entities and must be nonprofit and tax exempt to meet the legal status requirement.

Nonprofit, Tax Exempt
A Florida organization that is both:
  1. Nonprofit: incorporated as an active nonprofit Florida corporation, in accordance with Chapter 617 or Chapter 623, Florida Statutes; and

  2. Tax exempt: designated as tax exempt as defined in section 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, as amended. Staff will verify status in Guidestar at

The Division of Cultural Affairs will verify that the applicant is registered with the Division of Corporations as of the application deadline. If the applicant is not registered in Corporations by the application deadline, the application will be deemed ineligible. *

If the applicant is registered in Corporations but their status is not "active," the applicant must correct the status within 10 calendar days of notification or the application will be deemed ineligible.

*Artists applying to the AIE Artist Performances on Tour Program and Individual Artist are not registered with the Division of Corporations unless their organization has 501(c)(3) designation.

For more information on corporate status, visit or call the Division of Corporations, profit and nonprofit information line at (850) 245-6052. To verify corporate status, you can review your corporate record online through the document search tool.

For more information about tax exempt status, see Exemption Requirements - Section 501(c)(3) Organizations on the Internal Revenue Service website.(

Required Documentation

  1. All applicants must provide a DUNS number. You can request a DUNS number at
  2. All applicants must provide a copy of the Substitute W-9 with the grant contract. This can be found at

Specific Eligibility Requirements

Applicants to the following application types must also meet additional eligibility requirements.

Arts in Education (Residency)
  • Have a minimum of 30 contact hours
Artist Performances on Tour
  • Florida touring artists must be able to demonstrate performances and educational components of high quality. They must use a professional contract, press kit, and promotional materials. Artists must be able to substantiate their touring experience.
Discipline-Based (Museum)
  • Be open to the public for at least 180 days a year;
  • Own or utilize collections, including works of art, historical artifacts, or other tangible objects (live or inanimate); and
  • Exhibit these collections, including works of art, historical artifacts, or other tangible objects to the public on a regular schedule.
Discipline-Based (Professional Theatre)
  • Compensate artistic staff and actors
Underserved Cultural Community Development
  • Be an underserved cultural organization;
  • Have a Total Cash Income of $150,000 or less;
  • Have at least one year of completed programming.
  • Consultant only:
    • Consultant is not a member of applicant's staff or board; and
    • Consultant is not an immediate family member of applicant's staff or board.
Individual Artist
  • Be a professional creative artist;
  • Be a Florida resident for at least one year prior to the application deadline and maintain residency in Florida throughout the project;
  • Be 18 years of age or older by the application deadline; and
  • Not be enrolled in degree or certificate program.

Proposal Types

Arts in Education

Arts In Education project grants provide up to $25,000 for projects that cultivate learning and artistic development for all students and teachers by promoting, encouraging, and supporting arts and culture as an integral part of education and lifelong learning for residents and visitors. This includes, but is not limited to:

The Division supports the view that the arts build cultural understanding, mutual respect, and strong communities. Arts In Education projects accomplish this by bringing artists and cultural experiences directly into Florida schools, hospitals, nursing and eldercare facilities, senior centers, correctional facilities, community spaces, cultural facilities, and other organizations. The Division encourages the use of Florida-based artists whenever possible.

Funding Categories

There are three funding categories for Arts In Education Projects.

  1. Artist Residency,
  2. Arts Partnership, and
  3. Artist Performances on Tour
Artist Residency

Artist residencies place professional Florida artists in a variety of education and community settings. Services performed by resident artists may include:

Residencies can change the way a community views a particular art form and the arts in general. Artists engage participants in making art in a mutually supportive, creative learning environment and participants explore self-expression and the role of the arts in society. This process encourages imaginative thinking, problem solving, goal setting, and teamwork.

All residencies should relate to:


Artist residencies should include at least one (1) preliminary session with the artist(s) to discuss residency goals, scheduling, planning, objectives, requirements, etc. This session does not count towards the required contact hours. The artist should be paid for this session.

In addition to the preliminary session, residency activities may include the following:

  1. An event that shares the core participants' work;
  2. Arts-related professional development for staff, arts educators, administrators, and teachers (in-service workshops/institutes, seminars, etc.);
  3. Related in-state field trip to a gallery, museum, concert, or performance for the core participants; and
  4. An event that joins core participants, their family, and friends in hands-on arts activities.
Contact Hours

Residencies must have a minimum number of contact hours based on the grant amount requested. A contact hour is 60 minutes or one class period of hands-on activity with the artist. Residency days and weeks do not have to be consecutive. Use the table below to determine the required contact hours.

Minimum required contact hours by request
Request Amount Minimum Required Contact Hours
$10,000 or less at least 30
$10,001 to $15,000 at least 40
$15,001 to $20,000 at least 50
$20,001 to $25,000 at least 60

Residencies may exceed the minimum contact hours, as long as activities take place during the grant period. Residency applications that do not show at least 30 contact hours will be deemed ineligible.

Arts Partnership

The Arts Partnership funding category provides up to $25,000 to support projects that will advance arts education and the development of long-term partnerships through effective collaboration between community arts and cultural organizations, social service agencies, and educational entities.

Applicants may request up to $25,000 for arts partnership projects that have completed planning and design work and are ready for implementation or expansion.

If proposals include computer, video, and technology equipment, applicants must show how technology equipment, systems, and programs are integrated into their specific arts education partnership.

Arts Partnership projects are not intended to fund the same project year after year, however panelists have the discretion to recommend funding for on-going projects.

Focus Areas

Focus areas for the Arts Partnership project may include the following:

  1. School-based arts education;
  2. Programming that integrates the arts into areas not usually associated with the arts such as:
    • non-arts curriculum;
    • school-to-work initiatives;
    • the criminal justice system;
    • the healthcare system;
    • community care for the elderly;
    • underserved populations; and
    • adult-continuing education programs.
  3. Programming that brings together different generations;
  4. Arts and technology programming in music, visual arts, theatre, dance, media and/or literary arts; and
  5. Community arts education.
Artist Performances on Tour

The Artist Performances on Tour Program provides funding to Florida-based performing artists for touring activities to underserved communities; touring activities include both a performance and an educational component. Target audiences are organizations and schools located within underserved counties (population of 75,000 or less), or an underserved organization in any county (see Underserved Designation.) All performances are accompanied by educational components. Touring activity must take place outside the home county of the applicant artist and within the state of Florida.

Most touring activities are presented to K-12 students, many of them in underpopulated counties with little exposure to live performance. It is for this reason that educational activities play such an important role. In addition to performance pieces, touring artists must offer a menu that includes master classes, lecture/demonstrations, workshops, hands-on activities, and residencies of varying length; these must be accompanied by study guides and other material to enrich the students' experience of the performance. For K-12 students, artists can also provide lesson plans that show correlation to specific Florida Standards. These can be found on the Florida Department of Education website at An excellent resource is at the CPALMS website at For college, university, community, and adult audiences, artists must provide options for activities that enrich their experiences at performances.

Basic Application Eligibility

All applicants must be solo professional artists or companies with full-time, paid artistic/program/managerial staff that compensate all artistic, program, design, technical, and managerial staff in accordance with applicable labor standards. For this program, artist duos and ensembles that are not incorporated as non-profit 501(c)(3) must apply in the name of the lead representative. (Example: If the two-person Alice and Jerry's Fabulous Beethoven Magic Act is not incorporated as a non-profit, then either Alice or Jerry must be the actual applicant; this is how grant payments will be directed.)

Solo artists must reside in Florida. For companies (more than one performer such as duos and ensembles), at least 50% of the artists must have their primary residence in Florida and the company's primary place of business must be located in Florida.

Applicants must be able to provide evidence of touring experience.

Required Attachments


Discipline-Based projects are discipline specific for organizations conducting cultural projects, realizing their stated mission, and furthering the state's cultural objectives.

Discipline Categories

Discipline-Based applicants must select one of eleven (11) discipline categories.

The discipline category of the application will determine which review panel will evaluate and score the application. Applicants should select the discipline that best fits their proposal. Applicants should consider whether they are presenting or producing the activity when choosing a discipline category.

Applicants that produce festivals should select the discipline category for the festival activity. For example, an organization producing a film festival should apply to the Media Arts discipline while a cultural festival that is producing music, visual art, and dance activities should apply to the Multidisciplinary category. For more information, contact a program manager (see help).

The Division encourages the use of Florida-based artists whenever possible.


The Dance discipline is for projects that promote excellence in dance.


The Literature discipline is for projects that promote excellence in the literary arts.

Media Arts

The Media Arts discipline is for projects that promote excellence in film, video, radio, and television. This includes film and video festivals, and media art exhibitions, conferences, and seminars.


The Multidisciplinary discipline is for projects that are producing two (2) or more separate artistic or cultural disciplines. Presenting organizations should apply to the Presenting discipline.

Artistic and cultural disciplines include, but are not limited to:


The Museum discipline is for projects focused on the applicant's collections and/or exhibits. Applicants may include zoos, botanical gardens, arboretums, nature centers and aquariums.

To be eligible to apply to this discipline, a museum must:

Museums are encouraged but not required to participate in the American Alliance of Museums' Museum Assessment Program (MAP) and to pursue or maintain national accreditation through American Alliance of Museums (AAM), American Zoological Association (AZA), or Zoological Association of America (ZAA).

Museums may include but are not limited to the following:

Non-museum organizations conducting visual art exhibitions should apply to the Visual Art discipline. Multidisciplinary museums may also apply to the Multidisciplinary discipline.


The Music discipline is for both vocal and instrumental music projects that promote excellence in music performance and creation.

Applicants to the Music discipline may include chamber or jazz ensembles, choral groups, community bands, orchestras, opera, and world music ensembles.

Applicants with musical theatre projects should submit their application to the appropriate Theatre discipline (professional or community). Applicants presenting, rather than producing, should apply to the Presenter discipline.


The Presenter discipline supports the presentation of performing arts groups, individual artists, or other cultural providers.

A Presenter is an organization that enters into agreements to provide performances or other cultural activities. The organization generally does not create, rehearse, cast, or have artistic control over the performance or activity.

Applicants producing, rather than presenting, should apply to the appropriate discipline for their activities, such as Music, Theatre, Dance, or Multidisciplinary. If an organization is presenting and producing applicants should consider the percentage of their programming that is dedicated to presenting when deciding which disciplinary to apply to.

Theatre (Community and Professional)

The Theatre disciplines support projects that promote excellence in theatre performance. Musical theatre can be included in this discipline. Organizations producing opera projects should apply to the Music discipline. College and university theatre programs should apply to the Community Theatre discipline.

Community Theatre

The Community Theatre discipline is for applicants producing a community theatre project.

Most of the artistic staff participating in community theatre projects are not compensated; however personnel may be hired to perform administrative, artistic, or production duties.

Community theatre applicants should be very specific when describing how artists are compensated. Although it is assumed that most community theatre applicants will not be compensating most actors, applicants should address whether or not technical staff (directors, designers) are compensated and if any actors receive financial compensation.

If a community theatre is in the process of becoming a professional house, the application should describe where the applicant is in the transition and when the applicant expects to be offering full compensation to artistic staff.

Professional Theatre

The Professional Theatre discipline is for producing professional theatres.

Organizations applying to the Professional Theatre discipline must compensate their artistic staff and actors. Professional Theatre panelists strongly emphasize the importance of payment to actors.

Companies should be very specific when describing the financial compensation and/or benefits that are offered to artistic staff and actors. For information on minimum pay rates for actors and staff contact a theatrical union such as Actors Equity (

Traditional Arts

The Traditional Arts discipline is for projects that preserve and present traditional arts from specific cultural groups in Florida. This includes performances, exhibitions, festivals, and other projects featuring traditional artists and their work.

Traditional arts are traditional cultural expressions through which a community maintains and passes on a shared way of life. These communities can be job-related, ethnic, religious, age-related, or based on location. Traditional art expresses a sense of the community's values and aesthetics. Traditional art expressions are usually learned informally through a relative or the community and are maintained without formal teaching.

The Traditional Arts discipline includes many forms and processes of expression including, but not limited to:

Note: The Traditional Arts discipline is not intended for projects that focus primarily on the following activities:

Applicants with such programming should consider applying to one of the other disciplines. Contact the Traditional Arts program manager (see help) with any questions.

Visual Arts

The Visual Arts discipline is for projects that promote excellence in the visual arts through activities such as:

Underserved Cultural Community Development

Underserved Cultural Community Development projects supports up to $25,000 for the organizational development of underserved cultural organizations. All applicants to this proposal type must meet the following criteria:

Underserved organizations can also apply for project funding to the Discipline-Based categories.

Applicants are only required to have 50% match (cash or in-kind) for this category. There is no limit on the amount of in-kind that can be included in the proposal budget.

Underserved Designation

For the purposes of this proposal type, underserved means rural, minority, or lacking in resources.

A rural cultural organization is:
A minority cultural organization is:
  • Community-based,
  • Deeply rooted in and reflective of a specific religious, racial, national, or cultural group of non-western or Judeo-Christian tradition, or
  • Composed of at least 51% persons who represent such groups as African American, Hispanic, Native American, Asian/Pacific Islander, individuals with disabilities, and other minorities. This includes staff, board, artists, and volunteers. Gender is not considered a minority for the purposes of this program.
A cultural organization that is lacking in resources:
  • Has trouble achieving its mission due to lack of cultural information or access to available programs. These organizations are typically located within counties where there is no designated Local Arts Agency or other means of acquiring ongoing information and assistance.

Funding Categories

There are three (3) funding categories for Underserved Cultural Community Development projects.

  1. Capacity Building;
  2. Consultant; and
  3. Salary Assistance.
Capacity Building

This funding category provides up to $5,000 for projects that increase administrative or artistic capacity. Eligible projects include but are not limited to:


The Consultant funding category provides up to $5,000 for retaining consultants that can provide specific administrative or artistic needs.

Administrative needs may include but are not limited to:

Artistic needs may include but are not limited to:

The consultant may not be a member of the applicant's staff or board. The consultant may not be an immediate family member of any staff or board members. This funding category may not be used to hire temporary staff positions.

Applicants must submit the consultant's resume with the application.

Salary Assistance

The Salary Assistance funding category allows applicants to request up to $25,000 for the full or partial salary support for one or more positions. The positions must be critical to the mission of the organization. Organizations can only receive this grant for up to 3 consecutive years.

Individual Artist

Individual Artist project grants provide up to $25,000 for artist-driven projects that have public benefit and enhance the State of Florida through the creation or presentation of artistic work. Individual Artist projects can be in all artistic disciplines, genres, and styles. Eligible projects will support the Division’s mission to advance, support, and promote arts and culture to strengthen the economy and quality of life for all Floridians. Funds must be matched, with no more than 25% of budget in-kind. Collaboration with other artists, organizations, and community members is encouraged. However, one lead artist must serve as the primary contact and fiscal agent for the grant. Individual Artist project grants are designed for artists at varying career levels.

All applicants must submit a complete application with required attachments and optional support materials on or before the application deadline. The application will include an artist statement and must describe the project in detail (including budget), its artistic significance/context, and public benefit. The applicant must also identify all Division Goals that are addressed by the project. Division Goals are:

Individual Artist Funding is intended for artists creating original works of art. For the purpose of this program derivative works such as interpretations, arrangements, reproductions, or any other transformations, or adaptations of pre-existing works created by other artists are not considered original.

Basic Application Eligibility

Individual Artist project funding is designed to support projects by practicing, professional, creative artists at varying career levels residing in Florida. For purposes of this program, a "professional creative artist" is defined as a person who creates, on an ongoing basis, original works of art within an artistic discipline, and is pursuing it as a means of livelihood or for the highest level of professional recognition.

All applicants must provide documentation of Florida residency (as defined by section 196.015, or section 222.17, Florida Statutes) as of the application deadline. This documentation must include one of the following:

Applicants must redact their Social Security Number and any other sensitive financial information submitted as documentation of residency as all application documents are subject to Public Records Law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).

All applicants must be 18 years of age or older by the application deadline. Applicants may not be enrolled in a degree or certificate program.

Required Attachments

Application Requirements

Grant Period

All proposed activity must take place within the grant period.

Accessibility and Non-Discrimination

The Division of Cultural Affairs is committed to making the arts and culture accessible to everyone, including:

Applicants may receive up to 10 points during panel review through the accessibility review criterion.

Organizations seeking support for activities are required to be open and accessible to all members of the public, regardless of sex, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, age, or marital status.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in employment, state and local government services, public accommodations, transportation and telecommunication. The ADA extends the requirements under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, to all activities of state and local governments and places of public accommodations operated by private entities, including places of public display. The 504 Self Evaluation Workbook which can be used as a reference, and downloadable Disability Symbols can be found at While the workbook is not required, failure to complete the workbook can impact the applicants accessibility score.

Request Amount

Specific Cultural Projects have a maximum request of $25,000.. Use the table below to find the maximum request amount. Proposal types and funding categories (levels) are described in detail in the Proposal Types section of the guidelines.

Proposal Type Funding Category Maximum Request
Arts In Education * All $25,000

N/A $25,000
Underserved Cultural Community Development Capacity Building $5,000
Consultant $5,000
Salary Assistance $25,000
Artist Performances on Tour N/A $25,000
Individual Artist N/A $25,000

* Note: Arts In Education Residency projects have specific contact hour requirements based on the amount requested.

Grant Proposal Budget

The Proposal Budget expenses must equal the Proposal Budget Income.

Match Requirements

Applicants must provide at least one dollar in cash and in-kind (donated goods or services) for every dollar requested from the division. This is called match. Some expenses can only appear in the Proposal Budget as match (see Match Only Expenses).

Total Proposal Expenses are defined as match (cash and in-kind) + request amount. No more than 25% of the Total Proposal Expenses may be in-kind. See the in-kind section of the guidelines for more details.

Matching funds may be anticipated at the time of application, but must be received by the end of the grant period. All expenses (both state grant and match) must be paid out (not merely encumbered) by the grant end date.

Exception: The Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI) recognizes rural or economically distressed counties and communities. Applicants that are located within a economically distressed county or community as of the application deadline are not required to provide cash match; however REDI applicants are still required to show a 50% match of in-kind (donated goods or services). You can find more information and a list of economically distressed counties and communities at

In-kind (Donated Goods and Services)

In-kind can appear in both the proposal budget and the operating budget. To calculate the value of volunteer services, use the federal minimum wage (see the Wage and Hour Division of the US Department of Labor If the volunteer is professionally skilled in the service provided (such as a photographer donating photography services or a Certified Public Accountant providing a pro bono audit), use the wage rate the individual is normally paid for the service.

The value of all professionally skilled services used as in-kind must be documented in writing by the volunteer. The value of donated goods must also be documented. Records of such documentation must be available upon request.

Use the following formulas to calculate maximum allowable in-kind.

Total Proposal Expenses (as reported in the proposal budget) may not contain more than 25% in-kind.

  • Maximum allowable in-kind = Total Cash Expenses (cash match plus request) divided by 3

The amount of in-kind allowed in the Operating Budget depends on the applicant's Total Cash Income as defined in the application.

If Total Cash Income is $150,000 or less, Total Operating Income may not include more than 25% in-kind.

  • Maximum allowable in-kind = Total Cash Income divided by 3.

If Total Cash Income is over $150,000, Total Operating Income may not include more than 10% in-kind.

  • Maximum allowable in-kind = Total Cash Income divided by 9.

Exception: There is no limit on the amount of in-kind that can be included in the Proposal Budget for applicants in a county that qualifies under the Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI).

Allowable Expenses

Allowable expenses must be:

Only allowable expenses may be included in the proposal budget.

Spending state grant funds on expenses that have not been approved by the Division, even if directly related to the program or project, will be disallowed and could result in a legal demand for the return of grant funds.

Match Only Expenses

No state funds may be used towards operational or indirect/overhead costs which include, but are not limited to:

Non-Allowable Expenses

The Grantee agrees to expend all grant funds received under this agreement solely for the purposes for which they were authorized and appropriated. Expenditures shall be in compliance with the state guidelines for allowable project costs as outlined in the Department of Financial Services' Reference Guide for State Expenditures, which are incorporated by reference and are available online at The following are non-allowable expenses for grant and matching funds.

Review Criteria

All applications will be evaluated and scored using the following four criteria.


Applicants must demonstrate excellence in all aspects of the proposal. Panelists will use the following application responses:

(Up to 40 points)


Applicants must demonstrate the expected impact of the proposal. Panelists will use the following application responses:

(Up to 30 points)


This criterion covers administration, planning, and evaluation. Panelists will use the following application responses:

In addition panelists will also use the applicant's reporting history and compliance status as of the panel meeting (see noncompliance).

(Up to 20 points)


Points will be awarded based on demonstration of accessibility in the facility and programming. Panelists will use the responses to the Accessibility questions in the application.

(Up to 10 points)


Applications must earn a minimum average score of 80 to be recommended for funding by the review panel.

The maximum number of points an application can earn is 100. Panel members will individually score each application. The average of the individual panelists' scores will be rounded to three decimal places. When the fourth decimal is 5 or greater, the score will be rounded up in favor of the applicant. For example, 79.9995 will be rounded to 80 but 79.9993 would remain 79.999.

Review Process

The application review process includes the following:

  1. Staff Review for eligibility;
  2. Panel Review and scoring;
  3. Florida Council on Arts and Culture recommendations; and
  4. Secretary of State approval.

Staff Review

Division staff will review all applications that meet the deadline for eligibility (see basic eligibility and specific eligibility). Staff review does not include subjective evaluations or comments on the content or quality of any grant application. Only applications that meet eligibility requirements will move forward to the grant review panel.

Staff will contact the applicant during the staff review to address issues with eligibility including:

Staff will also contact the applicant if the application indicates support materials are included but no materials are received.

After the application deadline, applications may only be amended at the request of Division staff. Only changes that are approved by the Division will be provided to the review panel.

Panel Review

After Division staff review, the Division will release eligible applications to the grant panel for review and scoring. Panelists must be practicing artists or other professionals. Panelists will be appointed by the Secretary of State each year based on the following considerations (in no particular order):

The Division is always seeking panelist nominations. Anyone may nominate a panelist (themselves or someone else) at any time by contacting a program manager (see help). Panelists may serve on a specific panel for up to 3 consecutive years. Panelists serve on a volunteer basis.

All panel members must comply with the Standards of Conduct for Public Officers and Employees of Agencies as set forth in section 112.313 Florida Statutes, and voting conflict of interest laws as set forth in sections 112.3143 and 286.012 Florida Statutes.

Panelists independently evaluate each application based on the review criteria detailed in these guidelines and are required to follow the Division's scoring instructions. After each panel member has evaluated the applications, there will be a public panel meeting to review, discuss, and score the applications. Panelists must voice their scores in the panel meeting. Only scores voiced during the panel meeting count towards the final average score for an application.

Panel Meetings

Panel meetings are a public process (usually conducted by teleconference) and anyone can participate by attending in person or by calling in via a toll-free number. Participation instructions will be emailed to applicants and posted on the Division's web site. The Division strongly encourages applicants to participate in the grant panel meeting, however it is not required. Participating in the panel process can be very helpful for those that intend to apply for future grants.

Panel meetings are chaired by a member of the Florida Council on Arts and Culture. If a member of the Council is not available a Division staff member will serve as the panel Chair. Chairs do not vote on applications being reviewed.

A typical panel meeting will include the following:

  1. Call to Order;
  2. Introduction of Panelists and Staff;
  3. Panel Instructions from the Chair;
  4. Preliminary scoring of applications. For each application:
    • the Chair will announce the application number and applicant name;
    • applicants may provide a brief update on the application. Updates may only include new proposal information;
    • applicants will be permitted to respond to panelist questions;
    • each panelist will voice his or her score;
    • Division staff will calculate and voice the total points and the average panel score.
  5. Public comment prior to panel consensus on scores:
    • During public comment, anyone (including applicants) may speak about the applications under consideration. After public comment, panelists may adjust their scores before the final vote to accept all scores.
  6. Panel Recommendations;
  7. General discussion from the panel (policies, procedures);
  8. General comments from the public (limited to 3 minutes or at the Chair's discretion);
  9. Closing remarks from the Chair; and
  10. Adjournment.

Florida Council on Arts and Culture Review

After the panel meeting, the Division will report the panel recommendations to the Florida Council on Arts and Culture in the form of a ranked list. The Council will amend panel recommendations based on new or existing information about the applicant or panel proceedings.

Information that will allow recalculation of the average score by the Council is:

Information that will result in the Council recommending zero funding is:

Council Recommendations

All Specific Cultural Project applications recommended by the Council will be merged into a ranked list in accordance with section 265.286(3), Florida Statutes, using the following system.

  1. Applications will be ranked by average score (highest to lowest);
  2. Applications with a tied average score will be ranked using the average points scored on each criterion in the following order:
    1. Excellence;
    2. Impact;
    3. Management; and
    4. Accessibility.
  3. If there is still a tie after the score for each criterion has been compared, the applications will be ordered by a sequence number assigned at application submission (lowest to highest)

This ranked list will be submitted to the Secretary of State for review and approval.


Subject to Legislative appropriation, Specific Cultural Project recommendations approved by the Secretary of State will be funded top-down at full request until the appropriation is depleted.

The Department of State's Legislative Budget Request will include the Secretary of State's approved ranked list of Specific Cultural Project applications. The Legislature may use this list to appropriate an amount in accordance with section 265.286(3), Florida Statutes.

If grant funds are returned to the Division, the Division shall award such funds to the next grant organization on the Secretary's ranked list of approved applicants according to section 265.286(4), Florida Statutes.

How to Apply

All application information submitted to the Division is open for public inspection and subject to the Public Records Law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).

Application Form

The application must be completed using the Division's online grant system and submitted online by 5:00 pm ET on the application deadline. If a deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or legal holiday, the deadline date will be the next business day. Deadlines and a link to the application form will be posted on the Division's web site.

Applicants may request that a submitted application be electronically un-submitted at any point before the application deadline. The application must be re-submitted by the application deadline to be considered.

Attachments and Support Materials

Attachments and support materials must be uploaded into the online grant application system. Attachments and support materials will not be accepted by any other method including email and fax.


Attachments are required documentation of eligibility. The required attachments for Specific Cultural Projects are:

Attachment Required for
Consultant Resume Underserved Cultural Community Consultant category

Work Sample, List of Recent Tours, Artist Resumes, Educational Materials, Sample Contract, Press Kit

Artist Performances on Tour
Florida Residency Documentation, Work Samples, Participant Resumes Individual Artist Projects

Support Materials

Support materials may be considered in the panel review and scoring so inclusion is highly recommended. We encourage all applicants to submit support materials.

Support materials may include, but are not limited to:

You may submit any combination of support materials. For example, you could submit:

Please submit only high quality materials that support your application and only as many as you need. Required attachments do not count towards the 10 upload limit.

It is your responsibility to verify and receive permission for the use of any copyrighted materials. You are also responsible for considering accessibility of your materials.

File Formats

Panelists are not required to own specific software and the Division makes no guarantee that panelists will be able to view your digital materials. To increase the chances of file compatibility, make sure files are in one of the following formats.

Uploading Instructions

Attachments and support materials must be uploaded in the online system by the application deadline.

You may include up to 10 uploads for your support materials in addition to your attachments. You can include more than one item in an upload. You are not required to upload multiple copies. You must describe your materials as you upload them.


For general information about the Division of Cultural Affairs and to access grant information, panel details and resources, visit our web site at:

For more information about the Specific Cultural Projects program, contact the program manager responsible for your proposal type and discipline.