Steve New Newsletter

State releases new guidelines for claiming unemployment benefits

People filing claims for unemployment benefits in Illinois are being asked to adhere to an alphabetized schedule because of overwhelming phone and internet traffic.

The state's Department of Employment Security is also issuing a reminder that the day or time of day in which a claim is filed will not affect whether claims are approved or benefit amounts.

Additionally, claims will be back-dated to reflect the date in which claimants were laid-off or let go from their jobs due to COVID-19. More information is available at the IDES website.

econ assistance

Stadelman, West highlight emergency grants and loans for small businesses

State Senator Steve Stadelman and State Rep. Maurice West today detailed three new emergency assistance programs geared toward providing immediate economic assistance to small businesses in communities across Winnebago County that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The economy in this community is driven by small businesses, and small businesses are often owned and run by a single individual or family," Stadelman said during a media opportunity at Salamone's restaurant in downtown Cherry Valley. "As we continue to see corporate investment at the federal level, it’s refreshing to see the state of Illinois prioritizing these businesses and recognizing that their needs are significantly different than the needs of massive corporations during this uncertain time.”

Added West, "We're moving in uncharted territories at this time, and it's important for the government to provide support as much as possible. I want to make sure all of our businesses in the Rockford region apply for the programs they are eligible for."

Stadelman and West were joined restaurant owner Rosalie Salamone, who shared the impact of the global health crisis on her family's business.

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Hospitality Emergency Grant Program

To help hospitality businesses make ends meet in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity is launching the Hospitality Emergency Grant Program. Bars, restaurants and hotels can access $14 million in grants to support working capital (rent, payroll and other accounts payable), job training (such as new practices related to take out, delivery and sanitation) and technology enabling new operations.

Bars and restaurants that generated between $500,000 and $1 million in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $25,000, and bars and restaurants that generated less than $500,000 in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $10,000. Hotels that generated less than $8 million in revenue in 2019 are eligible for up to $50,000. Funding for the new program comes from money originally budgeted for tourism promotion, job training and other purposes.

Application deadline is 5 p.m. April 1.

Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program

To support small businesses in downstate and rural counties across Illinois, DCEO is repurposing $20 million in federal funds to establish the Downstate Small Business Stabilization Program. This Fund will offer small businesses of up to 50 employees the opportunity to partner with their local governments to obtain grants of up to $25,000 in working capital. These grants will be offered on a rolling basis.

Application period opens March 27.

Illinois Small Business Emergency Loan Fund

The $60 million program will support low-interest loans of up to $50,000 for small businesses in every industry outside of Chicago. Businesses with fewer than 50 employees and less than $3 million in revenue in 2019 will be eligible to apply. Successful applicants will owe nothing for six months and then begin making fixed payments at 3-percent interest for the remainder of a five-year loan term.

Application period opens March 27.

To submit applications or obtain additional information on the three programs, visit the DCEO website.

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 Steve New Newsletter

Dear Chamber Leaders,

This is a time of great change and uncertainty. I appreciate your patience and your willingness to assist
as our community navigates the COVID-19 outbreak.

I'm sure you are receiving as many calls looking for guidance as my office. To help you respond to questions from businesses, I have compiled a list of services that may assist you. For your reference, I have attached:

 a FAQ to help restaurant and bar employees navigate the unemployment insurance program

 guidance from the federal Department of Health and Human Services regarding infection
control and prevention in nursing homes, and

 a copy of the executive order prohibiting on-premises food and drink consumption at all Illinois

Gov. JB Pritzker announced today that Illinois will extend its income tax filing deadline from April 15 to July 15 to coincide with the federal extension. In addition:

In addition, Illinois has secured a statewide Economic Injury Declaration with the U.S. Small Business Administration. As a result, small businesses that have been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak now have access to up to $2 million in low-interest disaster assistance loans. Interested business owners can apply at

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation has extended license expiration dates and continuing education deadlines. Licensees may complete continuing education requirements and other coursework online.

To help alleviate some of the economic challenges facing bars and restaurants due to COVID-19, the Department of Revenue will defer sales tax payments for more than 24,000 small- and medium-sized bars and restaurants. More information on the deferral is available at
These changes have been made possible by emergency declarations at both the state and federal levels. Gov. Pritzker has signed a series of executive orders granting the authority for these changes in an
effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

Please understand these policies are fluid and subject to change. Additionally, more changes might be forthcoming.

Feel free to share with your business community. They, too, may have some recommendations on how we might offer help to our local business owners during this challenging time, and I would encourage you to forward these suggestions to me for consideration. If you would like more information on any policy or topic, please let me know.

My office remains open by phone (815-987-7557) or email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). I am happy to speak to any and all companies to help alleviate concerns. Thanks again for your patience and support.


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State Senator Steve Stadelman

34th District

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Steve New Newsletter

Dear friends,

In this trying time, I'm very cognizant that information overload is one of the many challenges we all face. The state and local response to the coronavirus threat is appropriately robust and responsible, yet I appreciate everyone's apprehension.

This afternoon, Gov. JB Pritzker encouraged the people of Illinois to limit their travel by issuing a stay-at-home order to take effect at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 21. As rumors swirl, let me repeat the governor's assurance that essential services will always remain open, including but not limited to grocery stores, pharmacies and gas stations.

I'm including below links to those state resources that I believe you will find most helpful. Regrettably, I must postpone a Town Hall Meeting on Prescription Drug prices previously scheduled for March 30.

I'm including links below to the state resources I believe you will find most helpful. Please take every precaution to stay safe and healthy.


Steve Stadelman | District 34

  • With information changing so rapidly, the state has launched a new website containing all of the resources Illinois has developed in response to the COVID-19 crisis, including the latest health advisories, number of confirmed cases statewide and executive orders issued by the governor.




  • All Illinois Secretary of State offices and Driver Service facilities are CLOSED through March 31. Expiration dates are being extended by 30 days for: driver’s licenses, identification cards, vehicle registrations and other transactions and document filings.
  • Family and Community Resource Centers operated by the Illinois Department of Human Services (including the Rockford center at East State Street and Mulford Road) are open with reduced staff in accordance with guidelines on social distancing. It is recommended, however, that you apply for and manage benefits (including SNAP, WIC and TANF) online or by calling 1-800-843-6154. The state also has filed a federal waiver to ease eligibility requirements for food-assistance programs like SNAP and WIC.

  • The Illinois Commerce Commission has enacted consumer protections for utility customers including a moratorium on shut-offs, suspension of late-payment penalties and a prohibition on door-to-door marketing by alternative suppliers until further notice.

  • Illinois has been approved for up to $2 million in low-interest, federal disaster assistance loans for small businesses facing financial hardship following the submission of documentation demonstrating the impact of COVID-19 on more than 3,000 businesses across the state. Eligible businesses in all 102 counties can apply online. By order of the governor, sales tax payments are being deferred for more than 24,000 small- and medium-sized bars and restaurants — accounting for nearly 80% of dining and drinking establishments statewide.


Category: News

Steve New Newsletter

Coronavirus: What you should know


Stadelman moves to protect survivors of sexual assault

State Senator Steve Stadelman has introduced a bill that would make a civil no-contact order permanent if an individual is criminally convicted of sexual assault. Under current law, sexual assault survivors must see their alleged assailants in court every two years to renew their no contact orders.

“Survivors of sexual assault have to live day in and day out with the trauma caused by assault,” Stadelman said. “The least we can do to help them is not to force them to relive their trauma every 2 years.”

Stadelman developed the Senate Bill 3617 in consultation with the City of Rockford and Rockford Sexual Assault Counsel (RSAC). Similar lifetime protection orders are already in place for stalking victims.

“If an individual believes that it’s in the best interest of their safety to extend an order of no contact against their criminally convicted perpetrator, they should have the right to do so,” Stadelman said. “People should have the right to feel safe in their daily lives without having to endlessly go to court.”

Stadelman fights for rights of kids to run lemonade stands

State Senator Steve Stadelman voted last week for legislation that would prevent children from having their lemonade stands shut down by overzealous local bureaucrats. The legislation was inspired by the story of 11-year-old Hayli Martinez, who last week told the Senate Public Health Committee about how officials in Kankakee flagged and quickly closed her lemonade operation last summer. 

“My lemonade stand is a dream I shared with my grandma before she passed away -- she always told me to make lemonade out of lemons, so I did,” Martinez said. “When my lemonade stand was shut down, I became very upset. I asked myself, "Why me?" I didn’t do anything wrong.”

Stadelman is the sponsor of Senate Bill 3169 and co-sponsor of Senate Bill 3459. Both would eliminate local requirements such as a license, permit or fee to sell lemonade for an individual under the age of 16.

“We should be encouraging our young entrepreneurs. The current law does nothing but discourage them,” Stadelman said. “I remember what it was like to be a kid in the summer, trying to find something to do. This legislation allows our youth to be creative and make a small profit at the same time.”

SB 3459 passed committee and will now be reported to the Senate floor for full consideration.

 Stadelman legislation to spur construction spending passes Senate

Legislation introduced by State Senator Steve Stadelman to help the state finance construction projects across Illinois passed the Senate last week.

Stadelman's bill allows the Illinois Treasurer to invest up to 5 percent of the state’s investment portfolio in Illinois infrastructure development companies, a change that would permit up to $700 million in financing.

“This measure creates new economic development opportunities for the state,” Stadelman said. “The construction industry is a key part of our state’s economy, so it only makes sense to allow the treasurer to invest in infrastructure projects.”


In case you missed me on Facebook ...

Congratulations to recipients of the YWCA achievement awards at the 40th Leader Luncheon today and thank you to Calvin Wesley for his kind letter supporting my nomination in the racial justice category. In his letter, Calvin expressed hope for his personal growth, having obtained free legal assistance to expunge an old criminal record through the Second Chances Summit, a partnership between my office and Prairie State Legal Services.

Steve YMCA

Rockford area members of the Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition came to the Capitol to advocate for more state investment in wind and solar energy.

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Contact Info

Springfield Office:
Senator 34th District
121A Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8022
District Office:
200 S. Wyman St., Suite 301
Rockford, IL 61101
(815) 987-7557
(815) 987-7529 FAX