Tuesday, 22 June 2021
Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
Covid-19 Pandemic Supports
I refer the Deputy to my earlier reply to Parliamentary Question No 64.
I allocated €50 million to a suite of measures to assist the live performance sector. As part of that funding, on Tuesday June 15th I announced the allocations for the €25m Live Performance Support Scheme (LPSS 2021). I was delighted to be in a position to fund 237 successful applications under this scheme, the details of which are available on my Department’s website. These grants will help support employment and wellbeing opportunities across all genres and the continued production of high quality artistic output for the public.
I have also made an allocation of €14m available for the Music and Entertainment Business Assistance Scheme (MEBAS) to make a contribution to the overheads of businesses, specifically musicians and related crew, that have been significantly negatively affected by COVID-19 and that do not qualify for other business supports. The main features of this new scheme will see support offered by way of three levels of flat payments:
- €2,500 for businesses with a VAT-exclusive turnover of €20,000 - €50,000 with minimum business costs of €3,000 incurred from 1 April 2020 to 31 May 2021.
- €4,000 for businesses with a VAT-exclusive turnover of €50,001- €100,000 with minimum business costs of €6,000 from 1 April 2020 to 31 May 2021.
- €5,000 for businesses with VAT-exclusive turnover in excess of €100,000 with minimum business costs of €7,500 from 1 April 2020 to 31 May 2021.
Under the scheme, self employed businesses including musicians, singers, lighting and sound crew and audio equipment suppliers operating exclusively within the commercial live entertainment sector are eligible to apply. Applications may be made via the MEBAS application portal on my Department’s website.
I have also made an allocation of €5 million available to local authorities for live performances in summer 2021 to animate town centres, should public health considerations permit. This will allow for the procurement by local authorities of performances by local performers. This funding will be allocated shortly.
€5 million will also be made available for a scheme of capital supports for the commercial live entertainment sector.
Up to €1 million was allocated to the St Patrick's Festival 2021 for programming and it has supported over 3,500 days of employment for performers, producers, artists, technicians, creatives and support staff. With gatherings still restricted, SPF 2021 curated a rich and dynamic programme of events involving hundreds of artists, musicians, performers, creators, and community organisations which was broadcast on the St. Patrick’s Festival TV online channel marking the national day.
In addition, I have announced an additional €11.5m for a new Events Sector Covid Support Scheme which I hope to launch soon. This scheme will target SMEs in the events sector which aren’t eligible for the CRSS and for whom MEBAS and the Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID-19 will not make a significant contribution to fixed costs relative to the level of support that that would be available under CRSS, had such SMEs been eligible for that support.