small biz 102820SPRINGFIELD – As many businesses continue to struggle through the COVID-19 pandemic, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) is reminding small business owners to apply for the second round of Business Interruption Grants, a key piece of the State of Illinois’ pandemic response effort.

Manar, the Senate Appropriations II Committee Chair, played a key role in securing funding for this program during last spring’s budget negotiations.

“Crafting a budget to keep our state afloat during a period of sustained economic devastation requires difficult decisions, but throughout the process I remained steadfast that our small business community had to be prioritized,” Manar said. “We aren’t out of the woods yet, and that means we must continue taking every opportunity to infuse dollars into small businesses so that they live to see the end of this.”

Applications for the second round of the Business Interruption Grants (BIG) program are available now and will offer $220 million in funds for small businesses hit hardest by the ongoing pandemic.

The second wave of funds from BIG aims to provide relief for all types of small businesses, with a focus on businesses located downstate and in disproportionately impacted areas. Application information for the second round of funds and can be found on DCEO’s website at