(SPRINGFIELD) Central Illinois businesses and residents affected by the December 1, 2018, tornadoes and severe storms can now apply for low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration. The loans are available in response to a letter from Governor Bruce Rauner requesting a disaster declaration by the SBA for Christian County and the adjacent counties of Shelby, Montgomery, Macon, and Sangamon. While businesses and private nonprofit organizations can borrow up to $2 million, eligible homeowners can get up to $200,000 and other homeowners and renters can borrow up to $40,000. Various requirements apply. Some applications are due by February 19, 2019, while others are due by September 23, 2019.
(SPRINGFIELD) The number of vacant homes in Illinois was nearly 68,000 in the third quarter of the year, a 4 percent increase over what it was a year ago. The Land of Lincoln has the 20th highest home vacancy rate among the fifty (50) states and the District of Columbia. Tennessee ranked number one on the analysis, followed by Kansas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Indiana rounding out the top five with the lowest vacancy rate. Rounding out the top ten states were Alabama, Michigan, Florida, Oregon, and Kentucky.
(SPRINGFIELD) Two new laws supported by Secretary of State Jesse White will take effect next Tuesday, New Year’s Day 2019. The first law will require parents and caregivers to secure children in rear-facing safety seats until they are two (2) years old or weigh at least 40 pounds or more or measure 40 or more inches tall. The second new law places more emphasis on bicycle safety for those taking Secretary of State driver exams by adding questions to help improve safety between drivers and bicyclists who share the road. For more details on these new laws and more, go to the Secretary’s website at www.cyberdriveillinois.com.