The new executive order will include the following modifications effective May 1:

OUTDOOR RECREATION: State parks will begin a phased re-opening under guidance from the Department of Natural Resources. Fishing and boating in groups of no more than two people will be permitted. A list of parks that will be open on May 1 and additional guidelines can be found on the Illinois Department of Natural Resources website HERE. Golf will be permitted under strict safety guidelines provided by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and when ensuring that social distancing is followed.

NEW ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES: Greenhouses, garden centers and nurseries may re-open as essential businesses. These stores must follow social distancing requirements and must require that employees and customers wear a face covering. Animal grooming services may also re-open.

NON-ESSENTIAL RETAIL: Retail stores not designated as non-essential businesses and operations may re-open to fulfill telephone and online orders through pick-up outside the store and delivery.

FACE COVERINGS: Beginning on May 1, individuals will be required to wear a face-covering or a mask when in a public place where they can’t maintain a six-foot social distance. Face-coverings will be required in public indoor spaces, such as stores. This new requirement applies to all individuals over the age of two who are able to medically tolerate a face-covering or a mask.

ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES AND MANUFACTURING: Essential businesses and manufacturers will be required to provide face-coverings to all employees who are not able to maintain six-feet of social distancing, as well as follow new requirements that maximize social distancing and prioritize the well-being of employees and customers. This will include occupancy limits for essential businesses and precautions such as staggering shifts and operating only essential lines for manufacturers.

SCHOOLS: Educational institutions may allow and establish procedures for pick-up of necessary supplies or student belongings. Dormitory move-outs must follow public health guidelines, including social distancing.

Category: Latest

The landscape industry requested additional information from the Governor's office about whether lawn, landscape, and tree services were essential services under Section 12, Paragraph H of the Executive Order that reads:

Critical trades. Building and Construction Tradesmen and Tradeswomen, plumbers, electricians, exterminators, cleaning and janitorial staff for commercial and governmental properties, security staff, operating engineers, HVAC, moving and relocation services, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, Essential Activities, and Essential Businesses and Operations;

Although landscaping is not mentioned by name, landscape services were verified as essential by the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity on March 23, 2020. An FAQ document was released on essential businesses that reads:

Can residential and commercial lawn service remain open?

Yes. Many landscape projects will fit under an exemption such as construction, agriculture, or public works. Outdoor landscape projects generally will provide for good social distancing that poses little risk of transmission, but it still is important to ensure the ability to wash or sanitize hands and take other precautions.

The FAQ document is included here: https://bit.ly/2Jsf3zT

This would include essential services for the following trades: landscape contractors (construction and maintenance), lawn care, irrigation, and tree care.

Additional information on green industry businesses: These fall under Section 12, Paragraphs A & B of the Executive Order.

Garden Centers - These establishments sell materials for customers to produce fruits and vegetables at their residences, sell firewood, pet supplies, and other household essentials. They are adapting business policies and procedures to protect employees and customers, in alignment with CDC guidelines, while serving the needs of the community.

Nurseries, Growers, Greenhouses - These businesses fall under agricultural production and are listed as essential businesses under the EO.

Category: Latest

This Thursday from 3:00-4:30 pm the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity, in partnership with the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, will be hosting a webinar for small business owners to learn more about the state and federal programs being offered to help them through this difficult period.

If you're a small business owner and wish to attend the webinar, please register by using this link: https://zoom.us/s/357027304

Category: Latest

Paycheck Protection Program – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will provide $349 billion in loans through the Paycheck Protection Program to small businesses and non-profits. Portions of these loans will be forgiven to the extent that recipients maintain their existing workforce or rehire. Loans can be up to $10 million and interest rates are maxed at 4% for portions of the loan that do not qualify for loan forgiveness. Learn more here.

Economic Injury Disaster Loan – The program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. Borrowers can request an emergency advance of $10,000 within 3 days of submitting the application and do not have to repay the advance if they are denied a loan. Learn more here.

Subsidy for Current Loan Payments – The SBA will cover up to 6 months of principal and interest payments that are owed on most existing SBA loans. Learn more here.

Training and Advising for Existing Businesses – Additional funds are provided to SBDCs, Women’s Business Centers, and Minority Business Centers for education, training and advising to small businesses. Small Businesses can take advantage of this now.

Aid to Midsize Businesses and Nonprofits – $454 billion will be available from the U.S. Treasury to provide financial assistance through loan programs established by the Federal Reserve. As part of that, a special fund is dedicated to midsize businesses and nonprofits with 500-10,000 employees to provide financing to banks and other lenders to make direct loans to these entities. The interest rate on those loans would be capped at 2%, with no payments due for the first six months. These loans cannot be forgiven.

Significant restrictions will be placed on the midsize business and nonprofit assistance, such as prohibiting paying out dividends while the loan is outstanding. More guidance will be forthcoming from the U.S. Treasury on additional criteria and funding access.

How can you help?

We are still looking for organizations to donate, make or sell personal protective equipment (PPE). If you are interested, please contact the following:
Donate: Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Make: Go to https://bit.ly/3dICp1O
Sell: Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
More information available here.

Additionally, the University of Chicago Booth School of Business is conducting a survey among small business owners to understand how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted small businesses. This survey is completely optional. Your responses will be anonymous and will not impact your eligibility to receive any financial assistance.

However, your responses will help us communicate your needs to policymakers and provide better recommendations for what they can do to help business owners in this time of crisis. Please fill out the survey here.

Category: Latest

COVID19 Updates

COVID19 Resources

COVID Business Resources

Koehler CUB Event

 

eNewsletter

eNewsletter Signup
  1. First Name(*)
    Invalid Input
  2. Last Name(*)
    Invalid Input
  3. Your Email(*)
    Please let us know your email address.

Contact Info

Springfield Office:
323B Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8250

Peoria Office:
400 NE Jefferson, Suite 200
Peoria, IL 61603
(309) 677-0120