Funds are being made available by the Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity. The funds will be for your local WorkNet offices throughout Illinois. The funds will be for preventing essential, small businesses from laying off or furloughing employees. The government is looking for businesses finding it hard to decide between keeping workers and having to layoff/furlough.
Here are some sample scenarios that qualifying businesses (“essential” per the Governor’s order and “small” by the SBA’s definition) can apply to cover:
- Companies who can’t afford frequent deep cleaning but need their employees to be at work. The cleaning/sanitization service could be paid for by layoff aversion funds.
- Companies that need specific software or computer applications for the employees asked to work from home/remotely. Those software or applications can be bought with layoff aversion funding.
- A call center environment needs workers to work from home to support social distancing. Layoff aversion funding can be used to buy essential supplies like laptop computers and/or smart phones.
- Companies that are running three shifts instead of two to help promote social distancing. The layoff aversion funding could be used to offset related costs to the employer or workers, excluding wages and benefits.
- Incumbent worker training to redirect and reassign existing employees on critical business needs. Layoff aversion funding can help pay for projects to support the production of goods and services that are needed to address COVID‐19 National Health Emergency and/or preserve critical business operations to stay in business.
The above are just included cases, not all. The employee payroll and benefits can’t be covered with the funding. Upcoming costs as well as expenses incurred already since the start of the Governor’s stay-at-home order (March 20) can be reimbursed through this grant. $5000-$50,000 amount could be awarded to each company. You need to complete the application document and submit to your local WorkNet office by close of business Wednesday, May 6.