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March 24, 2020

COVID-19 UPDATE: City of Chicago's Small Business Resiliency Fund and Illinois and City Licensing and Certification Deferrals


Yesterday, Governor Pritzker issued Executive Order 2020-11 which further clarified his stay-at-home order from last week. The new Order amended Executive Order 2020-10 to clarify namely that: (1) individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain any Human Services Operations, such as adoption agencies, long-term care facilities, residential settings for individuals with disabilities and day care centers for children of essential employees; and (2) Illinois school districts do not need approval by the school board for an e-learning curriculum. To read Executive Order 2020-11 click HERE.


Last week, the City announced its establishment of a $100 million small business resiliency fund. Since our update last week, the City has released more specifics about the fund and eligibility requirements.

Loans will follow these guidelines: (1) loans will be low-interest loans for a term of up to five (5) years; (2) loans will be up to $50,000 but sized based on revenues before the COVID-19 outbreak; and (3) loan proceeds are required to be used for working capital. Businesses must apply at least 50% of loan proceeds toward payroll and commit to retain their workforce at 50% of pre-COVID-19 levels.

be eligible for the program, a business must: (1) have suffered more than 25% revenue decrease due to COVID-19; (2) employ fewer than 50 employees; (3) have gross revenues of less than $3 million in 2019; (4) provide a City business address or City business license; and (5) have no pre-existing tax liens or legal judgments.

The City will begin accepting applications on March 31, 2020. For more information click HERE.


Both the State and the City have provided certain relief for upcoming licensing and certification renewals. The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (“IDFPR”) issued two variances last week. The first relaxed continuing education requirements to make it easier for professionals to complete such requirements. The second variance extended the time to complete continuing education requirements for all current licensees that have renewal deadlines from March 1, 2020 through July 31, 2020, until a new deadline of September 30, 2020. To see the full text of the variances and the professions covered click HERE. IDFPR also issued a variance which extended medical cannabis agent renewal deadlines to September 30, 2020. To read that variance click HERE.

Chicago’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (“BACP”) has not offered deferrals on the same scale as IDFPR. BACP offices closed to the public on March 19, 2020. However, BACP continues to process business licenses, where applicable, online or over the phone. The renewal of public passenger chauffeur and vehicle licenses that expire before April 1, 2020, will be deferred until April 30, 2020. Further, public vehicle inspections scheduled at the BACP Public Vehicle Inspection Facility from March 19, 2020 to March 31, 2020 will be rescheduled. For more information on BACP click HERE.

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