Funding For Local Chambers of Commerce
Local chambers of commerce which support small businesses and local communities throughout Illinois have been devastated by the pandemic. Lost memberships and the inability to host fundraisers have deeply impacted chambers of commerce. With the Delta variant causing further disruptions, many chambers continue to struggle, and some may not make it through the pandemic.
The SBAC is aware of these issues small chambers of commerce across Illinois are facing. So much so that the SBAC and the Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (IACCE) hosted a joint call with Senate President Don Harmon and local chamber of commerce executives to address the scope of needs their small business members face. You can view that call in its entirety below.
Some chambers of commerce received Business Interruption Grants, but many did not. Moreover, while Back to Business grants may be available to chambers, these organizations do not wish to compete against their own members for funding. We are advocating for the use of ARPA funds to provide grants for local chambers of commerce with less than 1500 members. These grants should be awarded to chambers which can demonstrate a $5000 or greater loss of gross revenue from 2019 to 2020. The grants should equal two months of that lost revenue.
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