Loans, grants becoming available to help small businesses stay afloat during pandemic

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Loans and grants are becoming available to help small business owners and their employees stay afloat during this pandemic.

The state of Illinois gave on average $14,000 to bars and $30,000 to hotels.

"It means the world. It's scary when your entire livelihood is based on your business and you want to take care of people," said Erik Archambeault with Rogers Park Social.

Archambeault said that state grant money goes to pay his seven employees. They are all working now to plan for shifting a business model - like possibly selling to-go cocktail sets that are both legal and lucrative.

"People are going to be scared to be in large crowds so what to you do differently is kind of where we are all at right as business owners is looking to what do we need to change," Archambeault said.

Archambeault is among those who also applied for a federal loan.

A spokeswoman for the U.S. Small Business Administration said business owners can find out through their lenders if they got approved.

Cook County began taking loan applications from suburban small business owners last week.

So far, the City of Chicago has received 8,000 applications for its Small Business Resiliency Loans.
Copyright © 2020 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.