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                                                                 Important Incentive Websites
 Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity
Southland Regional TIF Maps
 Southland Regional Enterprise Zone Maps
 Centerpoint 504


Employer Training Investment Program

The Employer Training Investment Program (ETIP) supports Illinois workers’ efforts to upgrade their skills in order to remain current in new technologies and business practices, enabling companies to remain competitive, expand into new markets and introduce more efficient technologies into their operations. ETIP grants may reimburse Illinois companies for up to 50 percent of the cost of training their employees. Grants may be awarded to individual businesses, intermediary organizations operating multi-company training projects and original equipment manufacturers sponsoring multi-company training projects for employees of their Illinois supplier companies. Training grants can be provided directly from the State or in cooperation with local community college.

Job Training and Economic Development Grant Program

The Workforce Investment Act provides federal funds for dislocated workers. This Act is implemented through partnerships between community-based providers and employers for the provision of customized training to low-skilled, low-wage employees, and unemployed disadvantaged persons.


Maps of Municipal TIF and Enterprise Zones

Industrial Revenue Bonds

The Illinois Finance Authority (IFA) is a self-financed, state authority principally engaged in issuing taxable and tax-exempt bonds, making loans, and investing capital for businesses, non-profit corporations, agriculture and local government units statewide.IFA approves about $3 billion in project financing each year. Since its formation in 2004, IFA has approved 780 projects and funded nearly $11 billion in capital projects to support growth initiatives throughout Illinois – initiatives that create and keep jobs, stimulate the economy and improve quality of life.

Illinois DCEO Participation Loan Program

Works with banks and other conventional leaders to provide financial assistance to small businesses that will employ Illinois workers.

Illinois Finance Authority Participation Loan Program

IFA assists banks in lending to Illinois businesses that create or retain jobs by purchasing loan participations. Through this program the Authority will purchase up to the lesser of $300,000, or a 50% participation, directly from the borrower’s bank.

Employee Illinois State Treasurer's Economic Program

Employ Illinois gives business owners access to capital to start or enhance their businesses with the help of low-interest rate loans. The loans are available to business owners large and small, and we have programs tailored to owners of child care facilities and self-employed Reserve Forces. The loans are primarily for equipment and working capital with a amortization of up to five years.

Available at more than 400 banks and lending institutions statewide, Employ Illinois loans strengthen the financial health of our communities and the state by investing in job creation and other quantifiable benefits. A participating bank or other financial institution must determine if a borrower is credit worthy before an Employ Illinois loan is approved by the Treasurer’s Office.

Small Business Financing Programs

The SBA offers numerous loan programs to assist small businesses. Centerpoint GSU can work to help companies access the SBA loan guarantees. Centerpoint also manages a Southland small business loan programs. CenterPointworks with Southland Community Development Corporation to finance those projects that need a bridge between what can be raised conventionally and what is needed to complete the project. CenterPoint/Southland Community Development Corporation loans can be used for any project that brings benefit to the South Suburbs.504 loans can be used by all types of businesses from restaurants to bowling alleys, funeral homes to hotels every business wanting to own property can benefit from the 504 program. To find out if this program will work for your business complete and submit the 504 eligibility assessment form.

Export Import Bank of the United States

Provides financing for qualified exporters in terms of export loans, insurance, and working capital guarantees.

Business Financing Guide

A Guide of Federal, State, and Regional Loan Incentive and Grant Programs for Business and Economic Development. Compiled by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

Tax Increment Financing

Tax Increment Financing (TIF) is a redevelopment tool authorized by state statute to help revitalize certain areas by eliminating certain blighting conditions and instituting conservation measures in order to encourage private investment and to enhance the tax base. The “tax increment” is the difference between the amount of property taxes collected before and after the designation of a TIF District.

Illinois Enterprise Zone Program UDPATE

SB3616 passed the General Assembly unanimously and includes provisions to extend the enterprise zone program.  Those provisions, which have now been adopted as law, include:

·         Revised renewal guidelines. Public Act 97-0905 enables DCEO to grant Enterprise Zone extensions until 2016. Beginning with zones expiring in 2016, zones would need to reapply for Enterprise Zone designation under the bill’s provisions.  

·         Consolidation with other incentives. The act eliminates River Edge Redevelopment Zones (RERZ) upon their expiration, but allows them to apply to become Enterprise Zones. The RERZ program provided tax incentives to help redevelop environmentally-challenged properties next to rivers in four zones. In addition, under the new law, other areas will have the opportunity to apply for Enterprise Zone designation, and existing Enterprise Zones and RERZs would not receive preference when reapplying for status after their life cycle expires.

·         Opportunities for extensions. Zones designated under the enrolled bill would have a 15-year term, with a review by the new Enterprise Zone Board at 13 years to determine whether the zone designation should be extended for an additional 10 years.

·         Eligibility and rules on extensions. Areas applying for designation would have to meet more specific criteria regarding the socio-economic condition of the area. The law provides a point system that DCEO and a new Enterprise Zone Board would utilize to assist in making designations.

·         Administrative changes. Public Act 97-0905 includes several changes to the approval process and administration of Enterprise Zones. DCEO will utilize the new criteria provided to assign a score to Enterprise Zones applications. DCEO will submit applications and scores to the new five-member Enterprise Zone Board that is charged with approving or rejecting Enterprise Zone applications by majority vote.

·         Reporting requirements. The law also requires additional reporting requirements. Businesses in Enterprise Zones, as well as those designated as High-Impact Businesses (not located in Enterprise Zones but eligible to receive similar tax benefits), must report annually on the total tax benefits received by incentive category, job creation, job retention, and capital investment. DCEO would make this information available in the aggregate as part of their annual reports on the Enterprise Zone program, which already includes job and capital investment information.

Elimination of select tax incentives. The law also eliminates three of the tax incentives provided to businesses in Enterprise Zones: the income tax credit of $500 for each hire that is economically disadvantaged or a dislocated worker; the income tax exemption for dividends paid by corporations; and the deduction for interest income from loans secured by eligible investment credit property. Businesses in Enterprise Zones can still take advantage of the remaining five state tax incentives, as well as any local tax incentives offered. The fiscal implications of these changes 

Illinois Housing Low Income Tax Credits


Illinois EDGE: Economic Development for a  Growing Economy

The EDGE program is designed to offer a special tax incentive to encourage companies to locate or expand operations in Illinois when there is active consideration of a competing location in another State. The program can provide tax credits to qualifying companies, equal to the amount of state income taxes withheld from the salaries of employees in the newly created jobs. The non- refundable credits can be used against corporate income taxes to be paid over a period not to exceed 10 years. To qualify a company must provide documentation that attests to the fact of competition among a competing state, and agree to make an investment of at least $5 million in capital improvements and create a minimum of 25 new full time jobs in Illinois. For a company with 100 or fewer employees, the company must agree to make a capital investment of $1million and create at least 5 new full time jobs in Illinois.

High Impact Business Program

Provides tax credits and exemptions to businesses that make a minimum eligible investment of $12 million which cause the creation of 500 full-time jobs, or make a $30 million investment that retains at least 1,500 full-time jobs.

Cook County Incentives

Cook County has a property tax reclassification incentive for industrial, distribution, warehousing, and commercial businesses. The townships in South Cook County have been defined as redevelopment areas and these classifications are available. These incentives are essential to compete with surrounding counties. Class 6b-Industrial Development up to 50 percent reduction in manufacturing, warehousing or distribution company’s total property tax bill for 12 years. Class 6c-Environmental Cleanup and Development up to 50 percent reduction in property taxes for 12 years. For commercial and industrial redevelopment of brownfields, may be combined with Class 6b or Class 8 incentives.Class 7a and 7b-Commercial Development up to 50 percent reduction in a company’s total property tax bill for 12 years. For projects in redevelopment areas, class 8-Industrial or Commercial Development up to 50 percent reduction in a company’s total property tax bill for 12 years. For facilities in areas in need of substantial revitalization, Class 9-Multifamily residential development up to 50 percent reduction in an owner’s total property tax bill for 10 years. Available for rental buildings in any area of Cook County, Class L-Industrial or Commercial Development up to 50 percent reduction in property taxes for 12 years. For commercial or industrial rehabilitation of landmark buildings incentives are also available.

Will County Tax Abatement Program for Business

Will County’s ad valorem property tax abatement program is done on an application/weighted process. As a result of the application evaluation, a project can receive 50% abatement on improvements for 3, 4 or 5 consecutive tax levy years. Abatement can only apply to improvements done to the property, based on the equalized assessed valuation of the property. The Will County Tax Abatement Incentive is administered by the Will County Center for Economic Development.

New Market Tax Credits

The New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Program was established in 2000 as part of the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act 2000. The goal of the program is to spur revitalization efforts of low-income and impoverished communities across the United States and Territories. The NMTC Program provides tax credit incentives to investors for equity investments in certified Community Development Entities, which invest in low-income communities. The credit equals 39% of the investment paid out (5% in each of the first three years, then 6% in the final four years, for a total of 39%) over seven years (more accurately, six years and one day of the seventh year) . A Community Development Entity must have a primary mission of investing in low-income communities and persons. New Market Tax Credits 

EB-5 Pilot Program

The “EB-5 Pilot Program” is an Immigrant Investor program that affords foreign nationals the opportunity to become lawful permanent residents in the United States through investment in strategic, US-based economic development projects in various Regional Centers. In March of 2009, Chicagoland Foreign Investment Group became one of those Regional Centers and has since extended its designation area to include Northwest Indiana and parts of Wisconsin.


Illinois Technology Enterprise Centers serve technology-based entrepreneurs, innovators and small businesses by assisting them with critical business start-up and marketing needs. The regional centers, supported by DCEO, help entrepreneurs locate pre-seed and early stage financing; help innovators in high growth and high technology sectors further their technical and/or managerial skills, and assist with new product development and marketing, thus nurturing new venture development in Illinois.

Manufacturing Extension Program - Chicago Manufacturing Center

MECs assist small and mid-sized companies with technological advancement, stressing continuous improvement of business practices to help firms be more competitive in a global economy.

Illinois Finance Authority Seed Stage Venture Capital

The Technology Development Bridge provides seed stage equity financing to small technology companies. It is an innovative public-private partnership, developed by the Illinois Coalition and funded by the IFA, aimed at helping technology firms access capital they need to grow and create jobs.

Illinois Venture Capital

Venture capital investment in Metro Chicago is strong. The Chicago metro area has been consistently in the top 5 among U.S. metros in the receipt of total venture-backed investment dollars. There are currently more than 120 venture capital funds located in the Chicago metro area.

Business Energy Efficiency

The Smart Energy Design Assistance Center (SEDAC) is designed to encourage for-profit small business owners, design professionals, and building contractors to incorporate renewable energy systems and energy conservation practices. SEDAC supports the Illinois Small Business $mart Energy (SB$E) program to increase the efficient and effective use of energy in for-profit businesses throughout Illinois. MEEP will offer Illinois manufacturers total energy cost optimization planning including energy information management systems, information on purchasing options available due to electric deregulation, and guidance on low-cost financing options for energy efficiency improvements.

© Copyright 2011 Chicago Southland Economic Development Corporation.    Private Website
1904 W. 174th Street • East Hazel Crest, IL 60429 • Phone: 708-922-4671 • Fax: 708-206-1133 • reggie.greenwood@ssmma.org