Governor Pritzker Announces
On June 17, 2020 Governor JB Pritzker announced a significant business and community assistance package geared toward supporting communities and businesses impacted by the pandemic and recent civil unrest. More than $900 million across more than ten programs and four state agencies to will help working families and small businesses who have been hit the hardest by COVID-19’s economic impacts, which was compounded by recent property damage and civil unrest.
NEW BUSINESS INTERRUPTION GRANTS PROGRAM
The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) will launch the first round of Business Interruption Grants (BIG) by providing $60 million to businesses experiencing losses or business interruption as a result of COVID-19 related closures. The BIG Program is available for up to 3,500 businesses that experienced a limited ability to operate due to COVID-19 related closures. DCEO will begin distributing funds to qualifying businesses in early July. The total program funding will amount to at least $540 million in grants for small businesses, $270 of which has been set aside for childcare providers, and is funded by the CARES Act.
In the first wave of grants, priority will be given to small businesses that have been heavily restricted or completely shut down during the pandemic and are located in DIAs. Businesses eligible for the program must have experienced extreme hardship, demonstrated by eligible costs or losses in excess of the grant amount, since March and may continue to face depressed revenues or closure. Businesses must also have been in operation for at least three months prior to March 2020. An emphasis will also be placed on those businesses that are located in areas that have experienced recent property damage due to civil unrest, exacerbating the economic impacts of COVID-19.
Specifically, the program includes support for:
• Businesses in DIAs - $20 million for businesses that are located in a subset of DIAs that have recently experienced significant property damage, providing 1,000 grants of $20,000 each
• Bars and Restaurants - $20 million for bars and restaurants unable to offer outside service, providing at least 1,000 grants of up to $20,000 each
• Barbershops and Salons - $10 million for barbershops and salons, providing 1,000 grants of $10,000 each
• Gyms and Fitness Centers - $10 million for gyms and fitness centers that have lost significant revenue due to COVID-19, providing 500 grants of $20,000 each
DCEO will make the application for BIG available on Monday, June 22.
DISTRESSED CAPITAL PROGRAM
The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity's new economic recovery program will provide $25 million to support Illinois businesses that have sustained property damage as a result of civil unrest during the recent protests and demonstrations on or after May 25, 2020.
The Distressed Capital Program will reimburse the costs to repair structural damages, including repairs to storefronts and entrances, improving electrical systems, and restoring exterior work.
The program will prioritize small businesses, women and minority-owned businesses, underinsured or uninsured businesses, businesses that have a high community impact - such as grocery stores - and businesses in communities that have experienced historic disinvestment.
The Rebuild Distressed Communities NOFO will solicit applications from regional and local organizations that will perform outreach, coordinate local qualified vendors, and provide funds to cover the cost of repairs and building improvements for businesses in their region. The Distressed Capital Program also includes provisions to ensure BEP-certified contractors, including minority- and women-owned businesses, are the first in line to do the repair work.
DCEO will invite applications for the Distressed Capital Program with a NOFO made available on Monday, June 22.
The unprecedented program provides relief for families, renters, homeowners , child care centers, human service organizations, unemployed individuals and more.