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Local News

Grants still available for Will County businesses affected by COVID-19 restrictions

A bartender fills a glass on Sunday, March 15, 2020, at Werk Force Brewing Co. in Plainfield, Ill. In light of the coronavirus outbreak, many restaurants and bars face uncertainty as Governor J.B. Pritzker announces mandated closures.
A bartender fills a glass on Sunday, March 15, 2020, at Werk Force Brewing Co. in Plainfield, Ill. In light of the coronavirus outbreak, many restaurants and bars face uncertainty as Governor J.B. Pritzker announces mandated closures.

State officials are urging Will County small businesses to apply for business interruption grants, especially as the region again sees additional restrictions to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Since March, Gov. JB Pritzker's administration has allocated over $600 million for the Business Interruption Grants, or BIG, program and is taking a second round of applications from businesses in hard-hit sectors, according to a news release.

Pritzker announced additional restrictions on multiple regions starting Friday, including in Will County, for a high test positivity rate. Area elected officials are urging local businesses to take advantage of the program.

“COVID-19 has created many difficulties and uncertainties for our business community,” State Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant, D-Shorewood, said in a news release. “This grant program can help our local businesses keep their doors open during these tough times.”

Due to the additional mitigations, businesses in Will County will receive priority consideration for this round of grants, with $220 million available to help offset costs and losses they've incurred as a result of the pandemic.

BIG program funds may be used to cover costs for payroll, rent, utilities and other working capital during the time businesses experience interruptions due to the pandemic.

The new restrictions include a ban on indoor service at bars and restaurants in the county.

Visit the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity website for information on how to apply for grants.

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