Once again, the State of Illinois is entering another wave of restrictions. Of course, your first priority should be staying healthy and safe, but we want to do our best to provide resources for supporting your small business during these hard times.
As Congress and the Illinois State government move to save different areas of the economy, it is important for small business owners to understand what resources are available. Take advantage of the following resources so you can stay informed and lessen the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on your business.
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Illinois Business Interruption Grant Program
The Business Interruption Grant (BIG) program is a $636 million program developed by Governor Pritzker and the Illinois General Assembly to provide economic relief for small businesses hit hardest by COVID-19. BIG leverages federal funding provided by the CARES Act to help offset losses related to COVID-19 for small businesses in Illinois.
Illinois Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program
With the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus and its detrimental impact on small businesses, the State is invoking its option to adjust Community Development Block Grant allocations to address specific needs to benefit Illinois’ non-entitlement communities in case of unforeseen circumstances — $20 million will be available for this program and over $5 million has already been deployed to 250+ businesses. Like some other grant programs, Illinois businesses that derive at least 33% of their gross annual revenue from legal gambling activities — unless the business is a restaurant with gaming terminals and approved by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) — are ineligible to receive this grant. For example, if 33% or more of your 2019 total gross revenue came from slot machine income, you would not eligible for round 2 BIG funding but be sure to double check all your gross revenue source percentages before ruling this funding option out.
Economic Injury Disaster Loans
Developed by the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA), an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) provides economic relief to small businesses and nonprofit organizations that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, small business owners, including agricultural businesses and nonprofit organizations in all U.S. states, Washington D.C., and territories, can apply for an EIDL.
Main Street Lending Program
Run by the Federal Reserve, the goal of the Main Street Lending Program (MSLP) is to keep credit flowing to small and midsized entities and nonprofit organizations that were in sound financial condition before the coronavirus pandemic but now need financing to maintain operations.
The MSLP is not grants and cannot be forgiven. Interested borrowers will work with an eligible lender to determine if they meet the program’s requirements, which are available online, as well as the lender’s own underwriting standards. The lender will determine approval for a loan. The Fed will participate in the lending by purchasing a 95% interest in the loan. The lender retains 5%. Refer to the diagram at the end of the document for a schematic on how the program works.
Small Business Assistance Program from ComEd
The Small Business Assistance Program from ComEd is designed to give their customers a helping hand during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Small Business Assistance Program provides eligible small business customers, whose service has not been disconnected, with a one-time grant equal to 30% of their total ComEd balance (up to $1,000) that will be applied to the past due balance and the remaining balance can be spread over a payment plan of up to six months.