Pekin, IL: The City of Pekin is now accepting additional applications for grant awards using the allocation made available through its Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program funded by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These grants are intended to support qualifying local businesses in the Pekin community that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. During the first and second rounds of funding, the City of Pekin awarded grants to 138 local businesses and self-employed individuals. Funds under this program are available but are limited and it is the City’s intent to focus the remaining resources to supplement existing federal or state programs already available to effectively support local Pekin businesses that retain the employment of citizens. Since the use of CDBG grant funding is governed by federal regulations, grant dollars will be directed to primarily benefit individuals with low and moderate income (LMI). The City also has an “Urgent Need” category to address businesses not directly assisting individuals with LMI. Grant funding under the “Urgent Need” category shall only occur as long as those funds are available. To qualify and be eligible for available grant funding, businesses must meet certain requirements that include, but are not limited to:
•Having a location in Pekin city limits.
•Having less than $1 million in annual gross revenues.
•Having fewer than 50 W-2 employees.
•Being a for profit business.
•Being in operation on or before July 1, 2019.
•Participation in one or more federal aid programs to enhance cash flow availability.
•Continued payment of employee payroll or health insurance, or certification that previouslyfurloughed/terminated employees will be rehired.
Businesses meeting the requirements above shall be first considered eligible for a:
•$5,000 maximum grant award for businesses with W-2 employees;
•$5,000 maximum grant award for businesses with a commercial location (excluding home-based, booth rental or workstation rental) that provides services consisting of direct or closecontact with customers such as fitness centers and salons (with or without W-2 employees);or
•$2,000 maximum grant award for self-employed individuals and businesses that do not haveW-2 employees.
The City will try to fund as many qualified applicants as possible. Should the number of applications received exceed available funding, the following criteria will be utilized to prioritize applications:
•The level of participation by businesses in other federally-funded programs such as thePayroll Protection Plan and/or Small Business Administration’s Economic Disaster InjuryGrant and Loan Programs.
•The number of jobs retained as of the date of the application, as well as, the number of jobsthat are planned to be rehired due to the assistance from the City and other federally-fundedprograms.
•The degree to which businesses have been directly impacted by new public healthrequirements (social distancing) related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
•The degree to which businesses have been impacted due to being considered “non-essential”and have lost their sources of revenue.
•The degree to which businesses are public-facing.
•Whether businesses operate within any of the following critically impacted industries:
oBuilding Material and Garden Supply Stores;
oClothing and Clothing Accessories Stores;
oElectronic and Appliance Stores;
oFood Services and Drinking Places; and
oFurniture and Home Furnishings Stores;
oGeneral Merchandise Stores;
oHealth and Personal Care Stores;
oMiscellaneous Store Retailers;
oMotor Vehicle and Parts Dealers;
oPersonal and Laundry Services;
oSporting Goods, Hobby, Book, and Music Stores;
oSupport Activities for Transportation; or
oTransit and Ground Passenger Transportation.
Grant funds may only be used by awardees for working capital expenses that include employee salaries, general operating expenses (rent or utilities), inventory, and advertising/marketing expenses. Business owners may start the application process by reading the full grant requirements at www.ci.pekin.il.us/small_business_grant and then clicking on the website link for the online application portal. Applications will be accepted until 11:59 AM on Monday August 31, 2020. Grant recipients should be notified soon thereafter with funding disbursements anticipated in September, 2020.