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The City of Paxton will hold a public hearing on April 30 at 6:30 p.m. in the council chambers, to provide interested parties an opportunity to express their views on the proposed downstate Small Business Stabilization applications funded by Community Development Block Grant funds.

Early next month the city intends to apply to the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity for grants from the State CDBG Program. These funds are to be used to provide working capital for the benefit of the following businesses: (1) Arcade Café, LLC dba Arcade Café $25,000; (2) Cheesecloth & Buttermilk, Inc. $25,000; (3) Country Thyme Tea Room $15,000; (4) Leading Edge Salon $25,000; (5) Haide Obed dba Country House Family Restaurant $25,000; (6) Market Street Barber Shop $15,000; (7) Teri Hancock dba Picket Fence Florist $25,000; (8) Pro-Type Printing, Inc. $25,000 ; (9) Pueblo Lindo, Inc. $25,000; and, (10) Timothy M Johnson dba Tim’s Lawn Service & Snow Removal $15,000.

The City intends to request grants in the estimated amounts specified above in CDBG funds in separate applications for each business. The total amount of funds to be requested will not exceed $220,000 and will address the urgent needs of the respective businesses due to the COVID-19 emergency.

Mayor Bill Ingold said earlier this month he posted information about the grant program on the city website and sent it also to the chamber of commerce. He hand-delivered letters to the businesses he knew were not chamber members.

Ingold said the city received some 25 applications. Some were not qualified because they were not in business for at least three years or were sole proprietors. Ingold emphasized this is not small business administration money nor is it part of the payroll protection program run by the federal government. “It was a moving target every day, the rules kept changing,” Ingold said. Applicants had to include a paragraph outlining how the COVID-19 emergency has affected their businesses.

The city council will have adjourned their regular meeting April 28 to 7 p.m. April 30, following the public hearing. Ingold said he expects the council to then act on the 10 separate resolutions for the businesses as the city will apply to the CDBG on their behalf.

Information related to these applications will be available for review prior to the public hearing at the office of the mayor (217) 379-4022 at City Hall, (by appointment) between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

Written comments should be submitted no later than April 30, in order to ensure placement of such comments in the official record of the public hearing. Due to the COVID-19 emergency, interested parties may participate in the hearing and gain access to the council chambers based on the enforcement of required social distancing. For additional information concerning the proposed projects, contact Ingold.