The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity announced a new micro-lending program for small businesses that are having a hard time getting traditional funding from banks. Part of the $5 million set aside for the program is federal disaster relief money from the 2008 floods.
Now, the state hopes three lenders in Chicago will funnel money to businesses that are saying that they can't get access to credit.
"The credit crunch was the number one concern, that was universal at every session, in every part of the state, if you're a start up business? Just forget it," said Warren Ribley, director of the Illinois Department of Commerce.
Loans will start at $500 but can be as much as $75,000.