Sen. Jones

CHICAGO – With support from State Senator Emil Jones III (D- Chicago) more than 120 small businesses in the district he represents have received over $2.5 million in funding from the Back to Business program.

“Our community businesses are still feeling the lasting effects of the pandemic, and we want to help them stay open,” Jones said. “I am happy to see so many businesses in the 14th District receive the help they require to continue operating and serving our community.”

A total of $2.6 million was awarded to 124 businesses in the 14th district. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity awards business grants through the B2B program, using funds allocated to them by the American Rescue Plan through last year’s state budget.

DCEO has provided $250 million in B2B grants – thanks to strong support from State Senator Emil Jones III – to small businesses throughout the state, with an emphasis on hard hit sectors, such as hotels, restaurants, bars, barbershops and salons, and disproportionately impacted areas.

“These funds will help local area businesses bounce back after years of struggles,” Jones said. “Please continue to support our local businesses. This funding will help, but we must continue to shop local and support our communities by shopping at small businesses when possible.”

With strong support from Jones, the state has seen six Illinois’ General Obligation bond rating upgrades in the last year from all three of the nation’s primary credit rating agencies. The latest upgrade comes as a result of the state paying down its bill backlog from over $16 billion to less than $3 billion in a course of just a few years.

Due to fiscal responsibility, the state saw an increase in funds available to assist small businesses.

Jones urges small businesses to visit the DCEO website for additional resources or contact DCEO’s First Stop Business Information Center Services at 800-252-2923 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..