Small Business Assistance Grant Program

On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), Public Law 116-136 was signed into law to support local small businesses hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. CARES Act funding is administered through the U.S. Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Community Development Block Grant program to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the Covid-19 pandemic (CDBG-CV3). This funding allocation authorizes the City of Des Plaines to provide relief funds directly to local small businesses.

The City’s Economic Development Small Business Assistance Program (EDSBA) will focus on the immediate financial needs of small businesses with 20 or fewer Full-Time Employees, located within the Des Plaines corporate limits that have been negatively impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The total amount made available for the EDSBA is $276,164 with each grant award capped at $15,000 per business. Grant awards allow coverage of expenses such as employee wages, rent/mortgage utility subsistence payments, workspace and/or equipment modifications due to social distancing, and expenses tied to the purchase of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Additionally, funds may be used to reimburse the costs of business interruption caused by required closures and/or limited operations due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

  1.  To be eligible for the CDBG-CV3 funds, Des Plaines small business owners must meet the following criteria:
  • Be a locally owned, for-profit business located within the corporate limits of the City of Des Plaines.
  • Occupy a commercial space with a “brick and mortar” location (home-based businesses are ineligible).
  • Have an active City of Des Plaines Business Registration and/or license established prior to March 1, 2019.
  •  Be in good standing with the City of Des Plaines at the time of the award.
  • Must have experienced a 20%< revenue decline due to the Covid-19 pandemic for the period of March 2020 through December 2020 versus March 2019 through December 2019.
  • Have 20 or fewer Full-Time Equivalent employees as of March 1, 2020.
  • Must not have any Federal or State tax lien(s) or other judgment(s) against the business, its owners, or partners.
  • Must not have had a bankruptcy filing or a foreclosure proceeding within the last six months.
  • Applicants cannot duplicate benefits for any type of funds regardless of source for the same expense.

2. and at least ONE (1) of the following eligibility criteria must be met to qualify:

  • The business owner’s household income (including all adults at their home address) is below the HUD low- and moderate-income limits, per HUD income guidelines
  • The business is located within a low- and moderate-income area (LMA) as per HUD guidelines. Click here to check the business address is in an LMI area.
  • Funding will help retain 51% (depending on the number of employees) of full-time equivalent position(s) for a person(s) from a low- and moderate-income (LMI) household, as per HUD income guidelines, who is at imminent risk of job loss without the funding (Note: this includes furloughed workers). It is anticipated that the funding would be used to supplement or aid job retention rather than as a sole means of retaining a worker. Employees must have been on payroll as W-2 workers and be considered LMI to be considered for retention. If new hires throughout the year, employees must be on the payroll as W-2 workers and be considered LMI at the time of hire.


Grant Application Procedure

  • Applications must be submitted ONLINE on this platform.
  •  Applications will be accepted in order of submission with grants awarded on a first-come, first-served basis until the CDBG-CV3 funds have been allocated.
  • Grants will be awarded to those businesses who submit timely, fully completed applications that meet the criteria set forth by the City of Des Plaines.


All applications must follow the formatting described below:

  • Only one application per business will be accepted.
  • Required and supporting documents shall be labeled.
  • Extraneous information will not be considered.
  • Required documents must be submitted with this application.
  • The full application with signature must be submitted online to the Center of Concern.


Online Application Form 


Reservation Rights

The City of Des Plaines reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to award all, a portion, or none of the available CDBG-CV3 funding, and may reject applications based on the quality and/or merits of the application, or when it is determined to be in the public interest to do so. Furthermore, the City may extend deadlines and timeframe, as needed. The City of Des Plaines reserves the right to substantiate any applicant’s qualifications, financial information, capability to perform, and availability. The City of Des Plaines and the Center of Concern reserves the right to waive any informalities in the application, to accept any application or portion thereof, and, to reject applications, should it be in the best interest of the City of Des Plaines or the Center of Concern to do so.


Post Award and Sub-recipient Criteria

All awards are subject to the City’s receipt of its CDBG-CV3 appropriation from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. All awards are subject to pre-contract negotiations with the recipient. The City of Des Plaines is committed to monitoring the performance of grant recipients to ensure that Federal funds are used appropriately and, in a manner, to maximize low- and moderate-income public benefit. Monitoring each grant recipient ensures that the goals and objectives identified within the City’s HUD Action and Consolidated Plan are met. Recipients that do not comply with the Post-Award and Sub-Recipient Criteria listed below will forfeit their award of CDBG-CV3 funds. The forfeited funds will be then returned to the CDBG-CV3 program for reallocation.

For assistance or questions, please call 847-701-4705 or email Center of Concern’s Community Support Specialist, Schoen Aldrich at [email protected]