Financial aid options for small businesses in Illinois

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Illinois Governor Pritzker on Wednesday announced a new package of emergency assistance programs of more than $90 million for small businesses.

“Our department is leveraging every resource we have available to support small businesses in these challenging times,” said Erin Guthrie, Director of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, in a press release.

“These funds will provide small businesses on the brink with much needed working capital to continue making payroll and paying other bills while our administration continues to advocate for additional resources from the federal government.”

Hospitality Emergency Grant Program

Bars, hotels, and restaurants can apply for the grant which will help support “working capital like payroll and rent, as well as job training, retraining, and technology to support shifts in operations, like increased pick-up and delivery.”

  • Bars and restaurants that generated-
    between $500K and $1M in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $25,000
    less than $500K in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $10,000. 
  • Hotels that generated less than $8M in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $50,000.

Application can be submitted online in English or Spanish. Applications for awards will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. on April 1st, and winners will be chosen via a lottery, therefore, there is no benefit to submitting an application first as long as a valid, complete application is received by the deadline.

Accion will notify businesses on April 4th if they have received an award. Accion and DCEO are striving to make funds available to awarded businesses within two days of receiving the necessary bank information from an awarded grantee.

Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund

Businesses located outside of the City of Chicago with fewer than 50 workers and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019, can receive a low interest loan of up to $50,000 with a 5 year repayment period with no payments due for the first six months.  

Form will be posted here on Friday, March 27th.

Eligible businesses will be invited to submit a full application beginning on April 1st.

DCEO and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) will strive to make a loan decision within 10 days, and make funds available within two days of receiving bank information from a business.

Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program

Small businesses of up to 50 employees the opportunity to partner with their local governments to obtain grants of up to $25,000 in working capital.  These grants will be offered on a rolling basis.

Local governments can apply on behalf of the businesses.

Only units of local government recognized by the Illinois Constitution and able to support economic development activities on a sufficient scale are eligible to apply for the grant.

A map of eligible areas of the state can be accessed here. Application materials will be posted to the DCEO website on Friday, March 27th.

DCEO’s goal is to execute grants within 30 days of application receipt, after which funds will be accessible.

More information can be found here.

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