With many businesses having had to close due to Covid 19 shutdowns and restricting measures, it’s no wonder many owners are suffering. Chicago businesses are no exception. But there are means and ways around it, quite possibly a lot. For instance, a new batch of small business grants were announced by governor JB Pritzker that Chicago businesses are anticipating will keep their businesses open as the Covid19 pandemic wears on. Governor Pritzker said the state would be taking applications for the following group of grants priced at a total of $250 million last Thursday. Owner of Bronzeville Wingz Nicole Jackson says they’ve been running for the past six months, but it hasn’t been a without defaults.

“It’s been a struggle, I will say that,” she said. Nicole hopes that the stimulus pay off will help her avoid having to make cutbacks of workers in her shop and stay open for the long haul.

Recently, as he introduced the new grants, Gov. Pritzker said, “The challenges that small businesses in the pandemic are facing are immense.” Pritzker continued, “Many have not survived. And so what we’re trying to do is support as many as we can to support them in any way we can.”

At one restaurant, Pearl’s Place, the lunchtime favorites remain on the menu, but lunchtime favorites aren’t hitting the same numbers as pre-pandemic. Darrel Green, the owner, said a state grant from the first round of financial aid for small businesses helped him stay alive, presently at least.

“We have to survive. We are doing our best to live up to that. That’s our goal,” Green said.  

There are widely available programs for Chicago’s small businesses online on CBA.org. One is the Utility Relief Program. In the descriptive reference it is stated: “Due to the Impact of the Coronavirus 2019 the department of finance has taken several steps to help our customers. Effective immediately: no new late fees will be assessed on unpaid utility bills, no payment plans will be defaulted, and, no past due date will be referred to a collection firm.”

Since the Coronavirus began to ravage the landscape and its people, many have been ordered to stay at home. However, this order hasn’t been good at all for small businesses in the nation, including those in Chicago. Yet Chicago politicians have notified residents they are trying to help businesses stay open during what President-elect Joe Biden has called a “dark winter”.

Are you a small business in Chicago trying to survive the pandemic? Let us know how you are handling it in the comments below.

This article originally published on GREY Journal.