Cook County launches loan program for suburban small businesses, 1099 workers

Daily Herald report
Updated 4/7/2020 1:03 PM

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle on Tuesday signed Executive Order 2020-9 to create the Community Recovery Initiative, which creates an emergency relief fund for businesses and 1099 workers in suburban Cook County.

The county will seed an initial $10 million for the fund, which will grant loans to gig workers and small businesses to weather the COVID-19 pandemic.


The creation of the fund comes days after Preckwinkle announced the county's new technical assistance network with the American Business Immigration Coalition, the Illinois Restaurant Association, and the National Partnership for New Americans to help suburban small businesses and contract workers quickly and successfully access $377 billion in new small business loans created as part of the CARES Act recently passed by Congress.

"Unprecedented problems call for unprecedented solutions," Preckwinkle said in an announcement of the initiative. "Small businesses and entrepreneurs are at the heart of the towns and villages throughout Cook County, and my administration will do all it can to support them through this dark time."

The new fund will offer one-time, zero-interest loans to suburban Cook County small businesses with up to 25 employees and to suburban Cook County residents who make more than half their income in 1099 contract employment. The loans will be up to $20,000 for small businesses and $10,000 for individuals.

The county plans to open applications for the Community Recovery Fund by mid-April. To learn more and sign up for updates when the application opens, visit

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