COLLINSVILLE, Ill. – State Rep. Katie Stuart, D-Edwardsville, is encouraging local business owners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to apply for the new Business Interuption Grant (BIG) available through the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO).
“Recognizing that the past few months have been extremely difficult on the business community, DCEO is now accepting applications for grant funding to help those facing financial hardship stay in business and recover,” said Stuart. “The BIG Program is a critical lifeline for small businesses, and I encourage business owners in need to apply as soon as possible.”
The first round of the new Business Interruption Grant program will make $60 million available for 3,500 businesses that experienced losses or business interruption because of restrictions in the wake of COVID-19. Eligible businesses include restaurants, salons, gyms and other businesses that experienced extreme hardship. Grants will be made available for small businesses in amounts ranging between $10,000 and $20,000.
Additionally, Illinois businesses that have sustained property damage as a result of civil unrest during recent protests and demonstrations are encouraged to apply for the Rebuild Distressed Communities Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO). The program will reimburse businesses for costs they have spent or plan to spend on structural repairs, with applications for support expected to go live by August.
Stuart is drawing attention to the July 7 deadline to apply for both opportunities. Information on eligibility and the application process can be found at https://www2.illinois.gov/dceo/.
“Local businesses are the backbone of our regional economy, and it’s my priority to support their growth as much as possible,” continued Stuart. “In addition to sharing this information with the small business owners you know, I encourage residents to continue shopping locally to help businesses in our community recover from the current economic crisis.”