SBA SVOG grant portal for shuttered venues snagged by glitch

In a blow to pandemic-battered theaters and occasion areas which have been ready greater than a yr for federal help, the Small Enterprise Administration has temporarily halted a grant program that was anticipated to start the method of disbursing $16 billion in aid funds yesterday resulting from technical difficulties with its on-line portal.

The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program, or SVOG, was licensed with the December stimulus bundle after 1000’s of venue house owners rallied to persuade lawmakers that current coronavirus aid packages weren’t suiting their wants. This system permits venues—together with performing arts areas, film theaters, museums, and different occasion areas—to use for grants of as much as $10 million. The portal was supposed to begin accepting functions at midday on Thursday, nevertheless it shortly grew to become obvious to would-be candidates that one thing was amiss.

In a tweet, the SBA stated, “After launching the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant utility portal, technical points arose regardless of a number of profitable assessments. After working with our distributors to deal with the problems, the portal was shut down to make sure honest and equal entry as soon as it’s reopened.”

We’ve reached out to the SBA for further remark and can replace this put up after we hear again. The company stated candidates should still proceed to register for new accounts whereas it addresses the technical points.

This isn’t the primary time {that a} federal aid effort for folks impacted by COVID-19 has been snarled by technical issues. Final yr, the SBA was criticized by lawmakers after the rollout of an emergency grant program aimed toward small companies proved particularly messy and plagued with glitches.