Statement of Purpose

A portion of the Clarion County Hotel Tax has been appropriated for a grant program specifically established to support Clarion County’s tourism assets. The purpose of this grant program is to increase overnight stays and overall tourism visitation within Clarion County. Grants are awarded based on merit as determined by the Clarion County Hotel Tax Committee with final approval from Clarion County Commissioners. Grants are administered by the Clarion County Visitors Bureau.

  1. Grants ($1,000 per day, up to $3,500) may be requested for the marketing of any tourism-oriented initiative sponsored by a non-profit organization located within Clarion County that submits a completed application. Applications must show how overnight stays and tourism visitation will be increased through the usage of these funds.
  2. 25% Matching Funds or in-kind donations are required on all grants to meet Act 18 guidelines.
  3. Eligible Uses include advertising and marketing programs targeted to media that will reach residents at least 50 miles outside of Clarion County, including but not limited to television, radio, newsprint, billboards, targeted paid social media ads, rack cards, digital ads, and magazines. Event brochures are also eligible, if it can be demonstrated that they can be used to attract non-county residents. The development or enhancement of a website is an eligible use.
  4. Ineligible Uses include advertisement in local publications such as high school sports programs, local newspapers, local radio, local online ads, etc. Grant funds cannot be used for beautification, restoration, or development of an asset. Grants will not be awarded for standard or event operating expenses or sectarian religion purposes.
  5. The grants are available on a continual basis throughout the year. Applications are available any time by visiting Clarion County, PA Room Tax | Clarion County Tourism Bureau (visitclarionco.org) Applications will be reviewed as needed at the meeting of the Clarion County Hotel Tax Committee.
  6. Award amounts must be utilized within 12 months of the award date. If the funds are not used within the 12-month period, applicants must return the entire amount to the Clarion County Tourism Grant Review Committee along with an explanation of why the funds were not used, unless an extension has been formally submitted in advance and accepted by the committee.
  7. As a provision of accepting these monies, awardees must provide adequate proof that the funds received were used for their intended purpose. A final project report is required within thirty (30) days of the completion of the project. If the awarded project will not be concluded on a specific date, a final project report is required no later than 13 months after the award date. The report must include:Documentation of the project
    1. An itemized list of expenses

    2. Copies of receipts/invoices and marketing materials

    3. Summary of the completed project

  8. An organization may only submit one grant request per project.
  9. Nothing shall prevent the Clarion County Tourism Grant Committee from withholding part or all monies available for annual awards, should that entity feel that insufficient requests have been made justifying exhaustion of those funds. Should funds be remaining at the end of any single fiscal year, those funds, need not again be awarded.
  10. It should not be presumed that any applicant will be awarded a grant on an annual basis, nor should the availability of these grant awards be considered an annual part of any applicant’s budget.
  11. The members of the Clarion County Hotel Tax Committee are appointed by the Clarion County Commissioners. In the event that a member of the Tourism Grant Committee serves on the Board of the applicant organization or event, or is affiliated in another manner, it is mandatory that said member remove his or herself from that review and decision-making process.
  12. Awardees shall publicly acknowledge the Clarion County Hotel Tax Grant program support through all reasonable vehicles as a stipulation of accepting such awards. “This project/brochure/ad/website, etc. was made possible in part by Clarion County Visitors Bureau Tourism Marketing Grant.” This notice must be placed on any brochure, website or literature produced by this funding. It must also be noted as sponsorship for such groups. Clarion County Visitors Bureau logo use is required.
  13. Grant awards will be presented to each recipient via the Clarion County Visitors Bureau.
  14. The Tourism Grant Review Committee will review the criteria and guidelines annually at the end of the fiscal year to enhance, amend or dissolve said guidelines.
Direct questions to: Hind Karns, hind@clarioncountyedc.com

As a provision of accepting marketing grant monies, awardees must provide adequate proof that the funds received were used for their intended purpose as outlined in their approved grant application. A final project report
is required within thirty (30) days of the completion of the project. If the awarded project will not be concluded on a specific date, a final project report is required no later than 13 months after the award date.
The report must include the following documentation:
Organization Name
Contact Name & Title
Mailing Address
Contact Phone
Contact Email
An itemized list of expenses for marketing grant fund usage
Copies of receipts/invoices and marketing materials

Clarion County Tourism Marketing Grant Application

Applications must be received no fewer than 90 days preceding the event date.

Each marketing grant application, based on merit, may qualify for a maximum of
$1,000 per event day, not to exceed $3,500 for multi-day events or projects