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Holmes invites small business owners to apply for new loan, grant programs

Published: Friday, March 27, 2020 04:58 PM

closed signAurora, Ill. – Restaurants, hotels and other small businesses across the state are invited to take advantage of two new emergency assistance programs, Senate Assistant Majority Leader Linda Holmes (D-Aurora) announced today.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our local economies, but the COVID-19 outbreak has hit many of them hard and even forced some to close,” Holmes said. “We must invest in stores, restaurants and hotels that make our communities unique.”

To provide assistance to struggling small business owners, Gov. JB Pritzker unveiled the Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, a $60 million program that will support low-interest loans of up to $50,000 for small businesses outside of Chicago. (Small businesses in Chicago can apply for a similar loan program here.)

Businesses with fewer than 50 employees and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Loan recipients will owe nothing for six months and will then begin making fixed payments at 3% interest for the remainder of a five-year loan term.

Pritzker also announced the Hospitality Emergency Grant Program. The program offers $14 million in grants to restaurants, bars, hotels and other hospitality businesses to help them make ends meet during the COVID-19 crisis. It will provide up to $25,000 to eligible bars and restaurants and up to $50,000 for eligible hotels.

Grant funds can be used to compensate employees and pay rent, or to support new practices like expanded pick-up, delivery and sanitation.

“Our beautiful main streets and their shops and restaurants are vital for most of us every day. It’s heartbreaking to see them struggling during this outbreak,” said Holmes. “These programs may offer some help to small business owners and get them through this challenging time.”

Applications to the Small Business Emergency Loan Fund will be available on the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s website by Friday, March 27.

The application period for the Hospitality Emergency Grant Program is open now and closes April 1 at 5 p.m. Businesses can find more information on the program here or apply here. A Spanish-language application is available here.

Cunningham encourages residents to report scams, price-gouging related to COVID-19

Published: Friday, March 27, 2020 04:57 PM

Sen. Bill CunninghamCHICAGO – State Senator Bill Cunningham is urging residents to file complaints with the Office of the Attorney General if they experience price-gouging, scams or other unfair practices related to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“We all have a part to play in preventing bad actors from using this pandemic to exploit others,” said Cunningham, a Democrat who represents portions of Chicago and the southwest suburbs. “I encourage anyone who has information on price gouging or scams to report it to the Attorney General’s Office.”

Link encourages local businesses to apply for new loan, grant programs

Published: Friday, March 27, 2020 04:54 PM

Sen. Terry LinkINDIAN CREEK – Assistance for restaurants, hotels and other small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak is available through two new state programs, State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) announced Friday.

“This pandemic is having major repercussions on our local businesses, many of which have had to close temporarily,” Link said. “It’s critical that our state finds ways to help them through this difficult time.”

To provide assistance to struggling small business owners, Gov. JB Pritzker unveiled the Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, a $60 million program that will support low-interest loans of up to $50,000 for sm​all businesses outside of Chicago.

Joyce: Help available for small businesses affected by coronavirus

Published: Wednesday, March 25, 2020 06:01 PM

Sen. Patrick JoycePARK FOREST - To assist local businesses impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19,  State Senator Patrick Joyce (D-Essex) is reminding residents of state and federal programs that may help business owners facing hardship.

“Small local businesses are the heart and soul of our communities. We must support them during these trying times,” Joyce said. “There are a variety of disaster assistance programs available to help give our local businesses the support they desperately need.”

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