Monday’s Town Hall Postponed; President Approves PPP Flexibility Act; Tuesday’s DCLA Hearing Postponed to 6/19

June 8th Member Town Hall Postponed

A.R.T./New York is postponing the Town Hall currently scheduled for Monday, June 8th to a to be determined later date. 

As I promised all of you in Sunday’s letter, I have reached out to a group of individuals recommended by the Raben Group about facilitating and creating safe space for us to come together as a community grieving over the discrimination and violence against Black people across the country.

I firmly believe that our community is strongest when we come together. And I remain committed to serving the needs and challenges faced by you, our membership. 

At this moment in time, when the only certainty is “uncertainty,” we want to know how to serve you best.

Below is a link to a brief form where you can provide A.R.T./New York with information about your challenges. There is an option as well to leave your contact information for an A.R.T./New York staff member to reach you to follow up—that identification is completely optional. This form will remain available for at least the next month, so please feel free to return to it when you might have additional information you would like to share. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us directly as well if you would like to chat or have any questions. 


Thank you for being a member of our community. 

- Ginny

President Approves PPP Flexibility Act on June 5th 

On Friday, the President signed the PPP Flexibility Act into law. This bill makes a number of updates to the Payroll Protection Program that impact organizations in our field, including:

  • The deadline for expenditures in the program has been extended from June 30 to December 31. 
  • The loan may be used over the original 8-week period, or you may opt-in to an option to extend that to a 24-week period. 
  • The percentage you must use on payroll expenses has dropped from 75% to 60%. The other 40% may be spent on rent, mortgage interest, and utilities.
  • If you have received the PPP loan, you can also participate in the IRS Payroll Deferral Program.
  • The minimum payback period for the loan has been extended to 5 years.
  • Under the “Safe Harbor” provisions, employers have until December 31, 2020 to rehire employees and restore salaries back to their previous levels, and there are new exceptions to the FTE calculations for forgiveness if the recipient is (1) unable to rehire former employees and is unable to hire similarly qualified employees, or (2) unable to return to the same level of business activity due to compliance with federal requirements or guidance related to COVID-19. 

And a note from Karen Kowgios or Withum to keep in mind: With a 24-week covered period, borrowers would need to plan for the fact that it is highly likely that their loan will not be forgiven during 2020 based on the length of the covered period and the amount of time banks have to render a decision on forgiveness. Borrowers may need to consider if that is meaningful to them from a financial statement perspective or a loan covenant perspective. 

For more information, you can check out Withum’s resource page and the Payroll Protection Toolbox from FMA. As we know more and more adjustments are made to the PPP program, we will let you know.

DCLA Hearing Postponed: Rescheduled for Friday, June 19th at 10am.

The NYC Council Committee on Cultural Affairs has postponed the hearing on “DCLA, COVID-19, and Cultural Organizations in NYC” from June 8th. It is now scheduled for Friday, June 19th at 10am.

This will likely be the first hearing for DCLA’s new Commissioner, Gonzalo Casals, who began his tenure at DCLA on May 18th (click here for more information about Commissioner Casals).

Because this hearing is specifically about COVID-19:

  1. Please consider participating if you have been providing programming or services while the City has been on PAUSE. You may join the call on June 19th at 10am or provide written testimony (information on how to sign up to testify and/or submit testimony is below). Each speaker will have 2 minutes.
  2. Focus your testimony on the Programming/Services you have been providing and (if possible) how you anticipate your theatre will help support the City’s Reopening.
  3. A.R.T./New York also urges you to include this statement (or make it your own): The Theatre community has long played an important role in telling stories of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and we urge the Council to take action by “holding harmless” funding for DCLA’s Coalition of Theatres of Color, who are essential to ensuring a just and equitable NYC.  

To testify, view the hearing, or send your testimony:

  • If you are planning on testifying live via video conferencing, please register at no later than 24 hours before the hearing. Persons who do not register in advance will not be permitted to testify live via video conferencing. Testimony is limited to 2 minutes per person.
  • Written testimony may be submitted without registration by emailing it to [email protected] or via the City Council website at up to 72 hours after the close of the hearing.
  • If you are interested in viewing the hearing, but do not wish to testify live, the hearing can be viewed at

Please do not hesitate to reach out to Ginny at [email protected] if you have any questions. 

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