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Crystal Lake rolls out new relief program for sales tax-generating businesses

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The city of Crystal Lake will be providing grants to sales tax-generating businesses that have lost revenue because of state restrictions aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19.

The City Council approved the new business relief program at its meeting Tuesday evening, as well as an expansion of an existing program aimed at helping businesses transition and recover from the ongoing pandemic, according to the city’s website.

The grant program, which uses state funding allocated by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, seeks to help keep businesses open and operating within the community, reduce the number of business closures, and minimize the number of retail and restaurant vacancies so that the city’s business community remains “vibrant and successful,” according to the website.

In order to qualify, businesses must generate sales tax and walk-in traffic, according to the website. Also, the business’ annual sales cannot exceed $4 million.

Franchise businesses, home-based businesses, home occupation businesses, professional and medical businesses and businesses with more than three business units do not qualify, according to the website. Neither do businesses that have received the state’s Business Interruption Grants.

Grant amounts will be based on Illinois Department of Revenue submitted sales tax figures from March 1 through Sept. 30 compared with the same period in 2019.

Businesses that experienced less than a 50% loss over that period will be awarded $5,000; those that experienced a 50% to 75% loss will be awarded $10,000; and those that had losses greater than 75% will be awarded $15,000, according to the website.

Applications can be found on the city’s website at crystallake.org.

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