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Notice Regarding the Collections Management Fund & COVID-19

This notice addresses general questions associated with managing existing Collections Management Fund (CMF) awards during COVID-19 pandemic. Museums Alaska is providing this information as a service to our grant applicants and awardees. Because COVID-19 and the complexities of operating museums during a public health emergency are evolving rapidly, we strongly encourage applicants and awardees to monitor Museums Alaska’s email correspondence and website regularly for updates.

APPLICANTS

1. Will there be any changes to Museums Alaska’s grant programs associated with COVID-19?

Museums Alaska is pausing all of its grant programs, including the Art Acquisition Fund and Collections Management Fund, until further notice. Current applications will be reviewed, but no new applications will be accepted. We are working with our funders to determine the best ways to support museums during the current public health crisis and to consider future opportunities.

AWARDEES

Museums Alaska understands that COVID-19 may impact your CMF-funded project as activities are postponed or cancelled and access to your workspace is limited or impossible. Please contact Della Hall at director@museumsalaska.org to explore normally allowable options such as modifying project activities, extending a project timeline, making minor budget revisions, or rescheduling your final report deadline. We are committed to working with you to provide the maximum flexibility allowable.

1. Will Museums Alaska allow us to continue to charge salaries and benefits to our currently active award if we cannot perform the work specified in the award due to disruption caused by COVID-19?

With advance approval, you may continue to charge salaries and benefits to your active CMF award as long as doing so is consistent with your organization’s policy for paying salaries (under unexpected or extraordinary circumstances) from all funding sources.

If you suspend project activities temporarily due to the impact of COVID-19, you may also charge other costs necessary to resume activities supported by your CMF award as long as doing so is within the scope of the original award and is to the benefit of the project, such as costs associated with managing the project outside of the facility.

To request advance approval for charging salaries, benefits, or other costs as described above to your CMF award, you must contact Della Hall at director@museumsalaska.org. You must include (1) a brief explanation of how COVID-19 has disrupted your work; (2) a description and dollar estimate of the expenses you wish to charge to your award; and (3) a verification that charging salaries and benefits to your active CMF award is consistent with your organization’s policy for paying such expenses (under unexpected or extraordinary circumstances) from all funding sources. We will notify you of the approval or rejection of your request.

You should not assume that additional funds will be available should the charging of salaries, benefits, and/or other costs necessary to resume activities result in a shortage of funds needed to carry out the award activities.

Please note that you must maintain appropriate records and cost documentation to substantiate the charging of any salaries and other project activity costs related to COVID-19 interruption of operations or services. As with other grant recordkeeping, these records and cost documentation are subject to audit.

2. Will Museums Alaska allow us to charge to our award costs associated with the cancellation of project events, travel, or other activities that were approved for our project?

If you incur costs related to the cancellation of events, travel, or other activities necessary and reasonable for the performance of your award, or the pausing and restarting of grant-funded activities due to the public health emergency, you may, with advance approval, charge these costs to the award.

To request advance approval for charging these costs to your CMF award, you must contact Della Hall at director@museumsalaska.org. You must include (1) a brief explanation of how COVID-19 has disrupted your work, and (2) a description and dollar estimate of the expenses you wish to charge to your award. We will notify you of the approval or rejection of your request.

You should not assume that additional funds will be available should the charging of cancellation fees or other costs result in a shortage of funds needed to carry out award activities.

Please note that you must maintain appropriate records and cost documentation to substantiate the charging of any cancellations or other fees related to COVID-19 interruption of operations or services. As with other grant recordkeeping, these records and cost documentation are subject to audit.

3. Will Museums Alaska allow extensions for Collections Management Fund Awards?

Museums Alaska will allow no-cost extensions of awards that were active as of March 31, 2020 and scheduled to end prior or up to December 30, 2020 for a period of up to twelve (12) months.

To request approval for a no-cost extension, you must email Della Hall at director@museumsalaska.org. Your message must include (1) a brief explanation of how COVID-19 has disrupted your work, and (2) include a revised schedule of completion showing how you will use the additional time to complete your project activities. We will notify you of the approval or rejection of your request.

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