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The State of Illinois Back 2 Business, Small Business Recovery Grants

Applications open on August 18th!

The State of Illinois announced its Back 2 Business (B2B) Grant Program designed to help small businesses who suffered revenue losses between 2019 and 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A total of $250 million in grants are available, ranging from $5,000 to $150,000. The eligibility for the program is very broad and most businesses with $20 million or less in annual revenue are qualified. The program also has set aside and prioritizes certain hard hit business types like restaurants and hotels, smaller businesses (under $5 million in revenue), businesses in low-income census tracts, and businesses who were not helped by other programs like Paycheck Protection Program and Business Interruption Grant. 

The Spoon River Partnership for Economic Development is here to help all of our businesses in Canton and Fulton County. Please reach out to Executive Director, Cole McDaniel if you have any questions, or need technical assistance with the application process! We encourage business owners to take a look at the required documentation and start to pull these items together as soon as possible, so when the application portal is open, you will be able to submit yours promptly.

Funding available:

  • $250 million to small businesses across the state that experienced losses in 2020 due to COVID-19, including the following set-asides.
    • $100 million – Businesses located in Disproportionately Impacted Areas (DIAs). You can view the map here.
    • $30 million – Arts and Entertainment businesses that didn’t receive Shuttered Venue Operators grants
    • $25 million – Restaurants and taverns that didn’t receive the Restaurant Revitalization Fund
    • $25 million – Hotels
    • $25 million – Businesses that didn’t receive a BIG grant due to exhaustion of funds
  • Grants will range from $5,000 to $150,000 per business and can be used to cover a wide range of operations/staff/overhead costs
    • Up to $250,000 for hotels

 Eligibility requirements:

  • Businesses with revenues of $20 million or less in 2019 and a reduction in revenue in 2020 due to COVID-19
    • $35 million or less for hotels
  • Priority will be given to the following categories:
    • Hard-hit industries (see eligibility guidelines for a full list of priority industries and their definitions)
    • Hard-hit areas – DIAs comprising of 176 zip codes
    • Businesses who have yet to qualify for state funding or federal assistance (including the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), business Interruption Grant (BIG), Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG), and more)
    • Businesses that had less than $5 million in revenue in 2019
  • Learn about eligibility guidelines

How to apply:

  • Application Portal is open! Portal closes October 11.
    • Applications can be tracked in real-time
    • Allies for Community Business (A4CB), DCEO’s grant administrator, will begin accepting applications on Wednesday, August 18, 2021
  • Documentation needed:
    • Business owner ID (ITIN business owners eligible)
    • Business’s 2019 AND 2020 Federal tax returns
    • Two (2) business bank statements – one from the period April through December 2020, and most recent statement
  • Prepare for the application process early by learning about the information and documents required
    • Application is also available in: Spanish, Polish, Chinese, Hindi, and Arabic (coming soon)
  • List of Frequently Asked Questions

For Application assistance contact the Canton and Fulton County area Community Navigator:

Reach Cole by Phone or E-mail: cmcdaniel@cantonillinois.org