As part of the 2018 budget cycle, the City Commission has approved a $150,000 grant program to encourage, promote and strengthen events and programs that benefit the Lawrence community and/or enhance the visitor experience in Lawrence. This program is overseen by the Transient Guest Tax Program Advisory Board.

The following goals and guidelines will be used in considering requests for funds from the Transient Guest Tax Grant Program (TGT).


The Transient Guest Tax Grant Program will provide funding for specific events which meet the following goals:

  • Demonstrate a measurable economic benefit including enhancing the cultural economy or travel/tourism economy, create additional transient guest tax and sales tax; and
  • Enhance Lawrence’s character and reputation for tourist activities and demonstrate pull of regional visitors.


In order to be considered, the online grant application must be completed (application is below).  The grant program will have one funding cycle each calendar year (for events occurring January 1 to December 31, 2018).  This program is administered through the City Manager’s Office with an Advisory Board that will make recommendations to the City Commission for final approval.


  • October 5 to November 3, 2017 – Application period for grants for FY2018
  • October 6 (2-3 p.m.) – Informational meeting for grant applicants – City Hall, Commission Room
  • November 17 (1-3:30 p.m.) – Advisory Board meeting (3-minute presentations) – Carnegie Building
  • December 1 (1-3 p.m.) – Advisory Board meeting (review scoring matrix and make recommendations) – City Hall, Commission Room
  • December 19 – City Commission reviews funding recommendations for approval


Please contact Porter Arneill, Director of Arts & Culture, (785) 832-3402,


The deadline to apply for 2018 funding was midnight November 3, 2017.

The 2019 grant application will open in the fall of 2018.



A scoring matrix based on the goals of this program will be used to evaluate applications. A short presentation (maximum of 3 minutes) by applicants will also be included as part of the evaluation. The advisory board may not consider all applications if the event does not meet the goals of the program. The following guidelines will be used to determine eligibility for funding:

  • Organizations can submit funding requests for multiple events held throughout the year as separate grant requests.
  • Grants will be limited to $15,000 per event or 10% of the total funding allotment for the year.
  • This funding can be used for overall event support; however, marketing and promotional efforts will be looked upon favorably. The following is a list of potential advertising/marketing/promotion tools that could be used for events:
    • Advertising: Print, social media, digital (web), radio, television
    • Printing: Flyers, posters, billboards, pre-event signage/banners, direct mail (including postage)
    • Video: Pre-event publicity video to promote event
    • E-mail: E-mail subscription marketing management tools
    • Web: Search engine optimization, event/program website design, market research analysis, website hosting fees
    • Design: Graphic design, copy-writing, design and layout services
  • Submitting organizations should be a Lawrence-based organization with events and programs held within the Lawrence city limits.
  • Events which have the potential to be repeat or signature events are encouraged to apply.
  • Organizations that apply for funds should note that the advisory board wishes to see events become self-sustaining after a period of time. This program is intended to help grow or initially fund events but this does not limit the advisory board from funding any events they determine meet the goals of this program.
  • When possible, event organizers should note whether the event will create overnight stays, thus generating Transient Guest Tax. An event producing overnight stays during non-peak times for hotels, including weekdays as well as weekends from December through March are particularly desirable.
  • The value of services provided by other organizations should be included in the application and noted as in-kind support. If cash or in-kind support has been received for the event, the application must include a letter of commitment as confirmation.
  • Any event receiving Transient Guest Tax Grant Program funds will be asked to sign an agreement with the city which will require post-event reporting including a summary of the event, data captured from the event including participant projections and use of city funding in the overall budget. Post-event reporting is due to the City of Lawrence within one month of the event/program. If an event report is not filed, future funding opportunities through this program may not be allowed.
  • Any entity receiving Transient Guest Tax Grant funding will be required to include the City of Lawrence logo on sponsorship program materials and credit the city for sponsorship when appropriate. The city logo is available at The convention and visitors bureau logo should also be included. Contact Andrea Johnson at for logo specifications.
  • Once the applications are received, the Advisory Board will begin their review process. Applications will be posted on the city’s website. The meetings of the Advisory Board are open to the public. A schedule of meetings is provided earlier in this application.