City of Decatur & 
Community Investment Corporation of Decatur

Sign up to apply to the Small Business COVID Assistance Grant

The City of Decatur Small Business COVID Assistance Grant is a program providing short term assistance to businesses that are located and have employees in low to moderate income census tract areas. Assistance is provided to businesses with up to twenty-five (25) employees not including the owner. Additionally, the program is set-up to pay the vendor, utility (electric, power, or gas), landlord, and/or mortgage company directly for past due bills only. Program assistance will be a minimum of $2,000 up to $10,000 per business.

The Small Business COVID Assistance Grant is now open.

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Eligibility Requirements

Your for profit business must meet all of the following criteria:

• Located in a low to moderate income (LI) census tract and serve the LI area in Decatur, Illinois
• Demonstrate at least 51% of the employees are below the 80% median income
• Business has not received any other COVID relief grants or loans for the same proposed use and for the same time period.
• Business was in operation by March 1, 2019
• Business is in good and active standing with the State of Illinois
• Business is current on business-related property taxes with Macon County, IL (if you own building) if receiving mortgage assistance
• Business can have 1-25 employees (can be full time or part time)
• Business has been significantly impacted by COVID restrictions
• Business does not have a conflict of interest (COI) or appearance of a conflict of interest. COI may be a family member who is on the city council, staff person, or a member of the grant review committee.
• Business cannot be a private club(s) or a business which limits membership
• Business cannot receive more than one-third of the revenue through gambling
• Business cannot distribute or sell cannabis or drug paraphernalia
• Business cannot be a retail liquor store, nightclub, adult bookstore, or non-therapeutic massage parlor
• Business cannot be a title loan, payday loan business, or pawn shop
• Business cannot be involved in the manufacturing or sale of wholesale of tobacco products, vaping, liquor, sexually explicit materials, or sale of firearms at wholesale
• Business cannot be a storage facility
• Business cannot be identified as ineligible by the U. S. Department of Justice, Housing and Urban Development or SAMS.Gov

Required Documents

Current Real Property Taxes - Please provide a copy of paid property taxes only if you own your building.

Business License or Document of Good Standing/Active Status with IL Secretary of State - If your business is a Sole Proprietorship you are not required to provide this documentation. Click here for the Secretary of State website.

Bank Statement - Please provide the most recent copy.

Tax Return - 2019 business taxes, or individual taxes if your business is a Sole Proprietorship.

Profit & Loss Statement - January-December 2020. Click here for an example spreadsheet of a profit and loss statement. Enter your figures into the sheet.

Utility/Power Bills - Electrical, Power, or Gas. Past due bill or statements only.

Mortgage Statement - Provide a statement reflecting the past due amount only.

Rent Statement - Provide a statement reflecting the past due amount only.

Lease Agreement - Provide a copy of your lease agreement only if you are renting the space.

Employee Information Form - Click here and complete the required employee information.

Use of Funds Form - Click here and provide information on how the grant funds will be used.

Need help submitting multiple versions of a document (e.g. monthly bank statements)?

You may have to submit multiple versions of a required document. We suggest you merge the PDF documents into one document for submission. We have provided a link to Small PDF, a free online tool to merge the PDF files. If you need assistance, please contact FORWARD-support@livestories.com or call 1-800-819-9785.

How to Submit your Application in FORWARD

Frequently Asked Questions

How will the applications be reviewed?

CICD, City staff, and a selection committee will review and approve all applications. Submission of an application does not guarantee grant approval. 

Are applications going to be granted on a first come, first serve basis?

Funding will be provided on a first-come basis and priority may be given to businesses serving residents in the low-income neighborhoods.

Are there restrictions to the way the funds can be used?

Grant funds may be used for PAST DUE rent or mortgage and utilities (power-gas and electric) that were incurred from March 2020 to February 2021.

What is the maximum amount of the grant?

Program assistance will be a minimum of $2,000 up to $10,000 per business.

Will the business owner receive the grant award?

No, the program is set-up to pay the vendor, utility, landlord, and/or mortgage company directly.

Are nonprofits eligible for this program?

No, nonprofits are not eligible.

Am I eligible if I received federal CARES Act funding?

Yes, but any funds that have been received cannot have been used for the same purpose and during the same time period.

Is information within the application subject to Illinois State public disclosure laws?

Yes, if selected as an award recipient, your business name may be publicly released due to Illinois State disclosure laws.

Still have questions? 

 If you have any questions contact us at 217-423-0352 or email Business.Assistance.CICD@gmail.com.

The City of Decatur and CICD are committed to helping all businesses, especially small business owners, navigate available resources to help our region's economy get back on track. Together, we move FORWARD.