Small Business | WGLT

Small Business

Staff / WGLT

Fifty businesses have received grants totaling $450,000 from the Town of Normal’s Small Business Relief Program to assist with COVID-19 impacts.

The town had 67 businesses apply for grant. In total they asked for more than $700,000 in assistance-- more than $300,000 than what Normal had to award.

The Normal Town Council voted overwhelmingly Monday night to waive next year’s liquor license fees for certain businesses negatively affected by Restore Illinois’ pandemic closures and restrictions.

Staff / WGLT / WGLT

The Town of Normal is using federal funds to launch a Small Business Relief Program that will offer companies with 50 or fewer full-time employees up to $15,000 in grants.

The town has received $450,000 from the Local CURE Economic Support program that uses federal dollars allocated to Illinois through the CARES Act. The City of Bloomington has a similar program.

John Minchillo / AP

The pandemic may be wrecking a lot of things for a lot of people. But one part of the economy that’s doing well is home improvement.

J.B. Pritzker speaking at podium
Eric Stock / WGLT

More than two dozen McLean County businesses and non-profits are getting some pandemic relief from the state.

Cans of beer being labeled
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

Bloomington-Normal businesses and other organizations were approved to borrow at least $130 million through the federal Paycheck Protection Program, with the most money going to restaurants and doctor’s and lawyer’s offices, according to a WGLT review of the loan data.

'Closed' sign in business window
WGLT file photo

A McLean County pandemic-relief loan program remains unused as more options emerge for struggling businesses.

Two Congressmen and a Regional HHS Director at a podium
Staff / WGLT

Two Central Illinois congressmen said they expect debate over a fourth coronavirus disaster recovery bill to be bipartisan, though they also preferred GOP drafts originating in the Senate.

A screen with a virtual meeting
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

McLean County Board Finance Committee members Wednesday evening asked Bloomington-Normal Economic Development Council Director Patrick Hoban to develop guidelines to repurpose money from a business creation fund to help existing businesses hit by pandemic-caused shutdowns.

The staff at Fort Jesse Cafe in Normal
Facebook / Fort Jesse Cafe

Bloomington-Normal’s restaurant workers need help.

That’s the message from Nick Birky, general manager at Fort Jesse Cafe, the popular breakfast and brunch spot in Normal. His entire staff of nearly 30 people is now out of work. (Fort Jesse Cafe opted not to offer curbside pickup for customer and staff health reasons.)