Rockford announces loan program to help small business owners

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara announced a new program to help the city’s small business owners on Tuesday.

Small businesses are some of the most impacted by Gov. JB Pritzker’s Shelter-in-Place order to halt the spread of novel coronavirus, McNamara said.

The federal government passed a $2 trillion stimulus package overnight, which will provide funds to American families.

“We know, with this stimulus package, there’s a lot of resources for small businesses, but we also know that these resources, as they typically do, will take a long time to get to Main Street, where we care about most, right here in Rockford,” McNamara said.

The Northern Illinois Community Development Corporation is working with the City to establish the COVID-19 Small Business Emergency Relief Fund to help small businesses get through a 60-to-90 day window before the federal relief package arrives, McNamara said.

Jeff Holtman, President and CEO of Illinois Bank and Trust, said the City, Winnebago County, Illinois Bank and Trust, Associated Bank, WinTrust, Midwest Community Bank, Blackhawk Bank, Northwest Bank, Stillman BancCorp and Rockford developer Sunil Puri have also participated in the fund, raising a total of $2 million so far.

Rockford Local Development Corporation Executive Director John Phelps said the Small Business Association is offering assistance for Illinois businesses affected by the shutdown.

To be eligible businesses must:
Be for-profit entities
Have less than 100 employees
Be experiencing a business interruption or cash flow issue due to COVID-19
Meet an average credit score
Must have full year of operations or other financial information

For more information on the local loan program, contact John Phelps at or Andrew Jury at or call 815-987-8675.


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