Further COVID-19 Relief for Businesses

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker released an overall economic recovery strategy, including a $250 million Back to Business (B2B) grant initiative. The recovery plan aims to assist small businesses that experienced significant financial impacts during the COVID-19 pandemic. The B2B grant is funded through the American Recovery Plan Act (APRA) funds.


Funding Available
A total of $250 million in grants will be distributed throughout Illinois. Grants are available from $5,000 to $150,000 per business and can be used for various expenses, including operations, staffing, and other overhead costs. Additional allocations include:

  • $100 million: Businesses located in Disproportionately Impacted Areas (DIAs)
  • $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 business Interruption Grant (BIG) grant due to exhaustion of funds


Understanding Eligibility
Businesses are eligible if revenue was $20 million or less in 2019 and a reduction in revenue in 2020 due to COVID-19.

To ensure assistance as given to businesses with the most significant financial impacts, the following industries will receive priority:

  • Hard-hit industries including but not limited to:
    • Hotels
    • Restaurants
    • Arts/entertainment
    • Retail establishments (excluding e-commerce)
    • Barbershops/salons
    • Fitness centers/gyms
    • Certain businesses in the tourism industry
  • 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), BIG, Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG), and more)
  • Businesses that had less than $5 million in revenue in 2019


Grant Application
Businesses looking to apply for the B2B grant must complete the online application available through the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity portal. Applications are currently open and will run through October 13, 2021. To complete the application, the business owner must provide a valid driver’s license and a copy of the filed 2019 and 2020 tax returns. Once completed, applications will be categories by need. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis based on priority.


To discover how CDH can assist in completing your B2B grant application, contact us today.