COVID-19: Business Information & Resources
We continue to assemble resources and information regarding COVID-19. We are working to provide the most up-to-date and accurate information possible. Please visit http://www.cusbdc.org/covid-19-business-information-resources/ for a complete list of business & community resources and send any questions to info@cusbdc.org .
State of Illinois
Financial Assistance for Illinois Small Businesses
With information rapidly changing, we are committed to providing accurate training, information sharing, and guidance on the different financial assistance options available to small businesses and non-profits in Illinois.

SBA’s  Economic Injury Disaster Lo an Program

Illinois small businesses and non-profits can apply for the SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program .

  • SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact.
  • The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses; 2.75% for non-profits.
  • To process this loan, you must have a credit history acceptable to SBA *and* be able to determine that you have the ability to repay the loan.
  • Businesses do not go through a lender to apply. All applications must be submitted through the SBA website.
  • There is no cost to apply. There is no obligation to take the loan if offered.
  • View a list of documents you'll need here. Learn more here.

State of Illinois Programs

DCEO announced a new package of emergency assistance programs for small businesses in need of additional capital, totaling more than $90 million.

  • Hospitality Emergency Grant Program
  • Who is eligible? Bars and restaurants with a valid license to serve food or liquor and who generated revenues of less than $1 million in 2019. Hotels with a valid license (hotels, motels other lodging establishments) and who generated revenues of less than $8 million in 2019.
  • For bars and restaurants, based on the needs identified in the grant application, funds can be used to support working capital (rent, payroll, and other accounts payable), job training (such as new practices related to take out, delivery and sanitation) and technology enabling new operations as well as other costs to implement that technology. For hotels, funds can be used as working capital to support the retention of employees.
  • Applications for awards will be accepted until 5:00 PM on April 1st, and winners will be chosen via a lottery, therefore, there is no benefit to submitting an application first as long as a valid, complete application is received by the deadline.
  • Learn more here.
  • Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund
  • DCEO and the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) are establishing the Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund to offer small businesses low interest loans of up to $50,000.
  • Businesses located outside of the City of Chicago with fewer than 50 workers and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Successful applicants will owe nothing for six months and will then begin making fixed payments at a below market interest rate for the remainder of a five-year loan term.
  • Loan funds must be used for working capital, and at least 50% of loans proceeds must be applied toward payroll or other eligible compensation including salaries, wages, tips, paid leave, and group healthcare benefits.
  • After taking into consideration the preliminary terms outlined here, if you are interested in applying for the Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund, please complete the expression of interest form.
  • Beginning April 1, their lending partners will begin accepting official applications and will contact eligible businesses that have expressed interest.
  • Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program
  • DCEO is repurposing $20 million in CDBG funds to stand up the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program. This Fund will offer small businesses of up to 50 employees the opportunity to partner with their local governments to obtain grants of up to $25,000 in working capital. These grants will be offered on a rolling basis.
  • Who is eligible? Champaign County businesses that exist outside the city/village limits of Champaign, Rantoul, and Urbana.
  • Who is ineligible? Businesses within the Champaign, Rantoul, and Urbana city/village limits are NOT eligible. Why? These grant funds are repurposed Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) funds. Champaign, Rantoul, and Urbana already receive CDBG funds through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), so these unused funds are being activated to help businesses that exist outside of Illinois municipalities and counties that are already receiving CDBG/HUD funds.
  • Applications must be submitted by a unit of local government recognized by the Illinois Constitution. If you have interest in applying and/or questions, contact your unit of local government or Kathy Larson at the Champaign County RPC: kal9832@co.champaign.il.us.
  • Learn more here.

CARES Act

  • The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known as the Paycheck Protection Program, the initiative provides 100% federally guaranteed loans to small businesses who maintain their payroll during this emergency.
  • Importantly, these loans may be forgiven if borrowers maintain their payrolls during the crisis or restore their payrolls afterward.
  • Additional details will be released soon, but these guides are helpful to understand what's available:
  • Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act
  • U.S. Chamber of Commerce Guide & Checklist

Other Programs

  • The Illinois Small Business COVID-19 Relief Program is an impact investment loan program under which the State Treasurer would make up to $250 million in deposits available to financial institutions throughout the state, at near-zero rates, to assist Illinois small business and non-profits negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Accion has an expedited Line of Credit available (up to $25,000) to existing Accion clients and for any entrepreneur who needs access to capital right now. Any entrepreneur who has a clean credit report in 2019 is eligible for this expedited process.
  • Contact your existing lender to see what assistance they are offering.

Have questions about any of these programs? Need help with your application and/or preparing documents? We're here to help - it's free & confidential. Contact us to schedule an appointment via phone or Zoom by emailing info@cusbdc.org .

Assistance is also available in Spanish, French, Italian, and Portuguese.
Upcoming Webinars
We're Here to Help
If you have a question, want to share information about your company’s situation, and/or are in need of resources, please contact us:

  • Carly McCrory-McKay, Executive Director - Champaign County EDC
  • carly@champaigncountyedc.org / 217-649-2586
  • Jordan Landeck, Marketing & Events Director - Champaign County EDC
  • jordan@champaigncountyedc.org
  • Don Elmore, Director - Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC
  • don@cusbdc.org
  • Mariel Huasanga, International Trade Center Director - Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC
  • mariel@cusbdc.org