CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - When the pandemic struck, Furniture King took a financial hit.
They were looking at ways to stay afloat and keep employees on the payroll, so they applied for the Downstate Small Business Stabilization grant with the help of the city of Carbondale.
According to the State of Illinois, the Downstate Small Business Stabilization component has been established to provide working capital funds to community’s businesses economically impacted by COVID-19.
The grant is for businesses that employ 50 employees or fewer.
Brad Weiss, the CBW of Furniture King, said this extra chunk of change helped them out entirely.
“We received 25,000-dollar grant and it really helped in keeping everybody’s payroll going and making up for the unusual year in business,” said Weiss.
But that process was lengthy.
“We actually started applying last April of 2020. And it took almost a year to receive the grant,” he continued.
The grant is helping 14 businesses, and $267,000 in grant money is flowing to businesses in Carbondale.
Steven Mitchell, the city of Carbondale’s Economic Development director, took on the charge for helping out businesses.
“We worked directly with the business to gather the information for the initial grant application. And then we got those applications approved by city council. And once they were approved by city council they were submitted to the state for approval,” said Mitchell.
The city wanted to help businesses stay open and not permanently close.
“To make sure that the city provides anything that they can to our local businesses, insure their success,” Mitchell said.
The city took on a lot of steps to make the process easier for those in need of some extra cash.
“To make it as easy as possible for our businesses to apply. We got some pretty good responses, number of businesses applied not everyone who applied won,” he said.
Weiss could not be more thankful for the help of the city.
“I really became to appreciate the grant more as time went on.”
More than $8.5 million in Downstate Small Business Stabilization grants have been deployed to 422 businesses across 103 communities throughout the state of Illinois.
The full list of businesses helped can be found on the State of Illinois website.