Dep’t of Business Affairs &Consumer Protection/BACP

    • Issues Business Licenses & Use of Public Way Permits
    • Provides Monthly Free Workshops on business topics
    • Open 8:30AM to 4:30PM, Room 800 of City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle Street, Chicago 60602

Small Business Center Solution Station

The Solution Station offers entrepreneurial assistance with legal advice, access to capital, and one-on-one counseling. They offer a wide array of supportive services to connect with other important business resources. Visit the Small Business Center Solution Station every Tuesday (SCORE), Wednesday (Community Law Project), Thursday (Accion Chicago or Women’s Business Development Center) to receive free business counseling, legal assistance, financial and loan assistance, and tax support from our trusted non-profit partner agencies. It is located at City Hall, room 800. Walk ins are welcome, or to make an appointment email: or call 312-744-2086. 

Restaurant Issues

Farmers Markets

Energy Savings Program for Small Businesses

If you’re a small business owner looking to improve your bottom line, you can take steps to reduce your business’s energy use and save money on natural gas and electricity bills with the Small Business Energy Savings (SBES) program. Get a free energy audit and see what rebates you are eligible for.

Loans UNDER $50K for Small Businesses

includes Northside Federal Credit Union and Accion

Loans OVER $50K for Small Businesses

includes (federal) SBA, (state) DCEO and Accion programs

Small Business Improvement Fund/SBIF Reimbursement Program for Renovation

City of Chicago webpage on SBIF

Site Selection Tool for Finding Commercial Space

Parking Pay Boxes

LAZ Parking,, 877-744-PARK (7901)

Bike Rack Requests

Illinois Sale Tax Resale Certificate

Pro Bono Legal Services for Businesses and Nonprofits

The Business Transactions Externship Program (BTEP) at The John Marshall Law School provides free legal assistance to businesses and tax exempt not-for-profit organizations. Get answers to legal questions related to:
  • Business entity formation
  • Structure of the businesses entity, focusing on ownership, control, and financing
  • Agreements between owners
  • Contracts with key employees and independent contractors
  • Protection of confidential information
  • Contracts with third parties
  • Routine forms

Crime Prevention & Safety Tips

Green Business Tips

  • Reduce HVAC operating costs: reduce air leaks, insulate surfaces, EnergyStar appliances
  • Reduce Lighting costs: CFL and other energy efficient lighting
  • Recycle cardboard, paper, plastics, batteries, food scraps
  • Encourage employees to walk, bike or take public transit to work
  • Use low toxic emissions materials indoors
  • Use sustainably created products
  • Shop locally (thereby reducing transportation costs)
  • · Use clean energy sources

Environmental Complaints Hotline

For noise, construction dust, fumes, chemical spills, etc.

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity

Bob Anderson
Northeast Regional Manager
312-814-7129 Office
815-721-3543 Cell
City Compliance Issues

 Unfair Hiring and Employment Practices

Office of Inspector General, 866-IG-TIPLINE or (866-448-4754)
 Fraud, Waste, Misconduct or Corruption
Office of Inspector General, 866-IG-TIPLINE or (866-448-4754)
 Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)
Department of Human Resources, 312-744-8868
 Sexual Harassment
Department of Human Resources, 312-744-9059
 Workplace Violence
Department of Human Resources, 312-744-9059
 Supplier Diversity
Department of Procurement Services, 312-744-4900
 Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
Chicago Department of Public Health, (312) 747-2237
ADD—Business Development Centers
Hull House

Enterprise Zone #4 in 47th Ward

Small Business Development Centers:
There are several SBDCs near us:
Illinois Entrepreneurship Centers
(A new initiative aimed at stimulating job growth in Illinois): 13 regional offices specialize in assisting companies with high growth potential. ECs accelerate entrepreneurial ventures by helping businesses connect with resources and funding, patents and products, money and markets. Centers also provide customized marketing strategies that drive product growth. Targeted to companies with high growth potential. Services include Access to capital; product licensing; access to technology; access to networks
ECs near us:
    • Chicagoland Entrepreneurship Center: Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce – AON Center, 200 E. Randolph St., Suite 2200 /Chicago, Illinois 60601-6436, T: 312/494-6736, F: 312/861-0635, W:, E:
    • Chicago West Side Entrepreneurship Center: University of Illinois at Chicago / Chicago Community Ventures 700 North Sacramento Blvd., Ste. 130 / Chicago, Illinois 60612, T: 773/822-0320, F: 773/822-0310, W:, E:
    • Illinois Hispanic Entrepreneurship Center: Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, 111 West Washington St., Suite 1660 / Chicago, Illinois 60602-2703, T: 312/425-9500, F: 312/425-9510 W:, E:
Illinois Technology (ITEC) Enterprise Centers
Targeted to Technology-based startup companies. Service include, Financing programs; training in technical and managerial skills; assistance with new product development and marketing
ITECs in Chicago:
Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTAC)
Targeted to existing businesses that are interested in selling their products and/or services to local, state, or federal government agencies. Services include one-on-one counseling, technical information, marketing assistance and training
PTACs near us:
    • Illinois PTAC at Women’s Business Development Center: 8 South Michigan Suite 400/ Chicago, Illinois 60603-3302, T: 312/853-3477 x-43, F: 312/853-0145, W:, E:
Illinois International Trade Centers
Targeted to existing, new to-export companies interested in pursuing international trade opportunities Services include, evaluation of company’s readiness to export; access to foreign market information; documentation assistance; automated trade leads; and linkages with trade representatives. NAFTA Opportunity Centers (NOCs) provide specialized assistance to those firms seeking to take advantage of the trade opportunities in Mexico and Canada made possible by the North American Free Trade Agreement.
ITCs near us
The Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Illinois (MEPI)
Centers and affiliated support organizations help manufacturers with productivity, technology modernization, and enhanced business practices. Targeted to small and mid-sized Illinois manufacturers. Services include, identifying a company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; report where a company stands on more than 50 performance indicators; manage projects to address various manufacturing needs including, but not limited to manufacturing modernization, quality assurance, best manufacturing practices, product development, and market development.
The Chicago Manufacturing Center (CMC) Serves the Metropolitan Chicago area
Small Business Environmental Assistance Program (SBEAP)
Targeted to businesses required to comply with state and federal air pollution regulations. Services include, a confidential helpline: 800-252-3998; Workshops; on-site visits; Clean Air Clips; consultant directory, and Environmental Resources
U.S. Export Assistance Centers
USEACs offer a full range of federal export programs and services from a number of federal agencies under one roof. Many locations have new-to-export programs called E-TAP.
    • 200 W. Adams Street, Suite 2450 / Zip Chicago, IL 60606, T: (312) 353-8065, F: (312) 353-8098, E: (
Women’s Business Centers
SBA’s network of more than 60 Women’s Business Centers (WBC) provide a wide range of services to women entrepreneurs at all levels of business development.
    • Women’s Business Development Center, 8 South Michigan Aveune Chicago, IL 60603, T: 3128533477 x38, F: 3128530145, W:, E:
SBA Classroom
The Small Business Classroom is an on-line resource for training and informing entrepreneurs and other students of enterprise. The classroom is designed to educate and provide interactive business guidance on a variety of topics to many types of students. Besides “traditional” small business clients, the on-line classroom will benefit high school and college students, individuals with time and travel limitations, people with disabilities, international business resources and others.
More than 10,500 volunteers provide training and one-on-one counseling at no charge
In Chicago:
    • U.S. Small Business Administration 500 W. Madison St., Suite 1250 / Chicago, IL 60661, T: (312) 353-7724, F: (312) 886-5688
    • Chicago State University Business & Health Services 95th & Dr. Martin Luther King Dr./ Chicago, IL 60628, T: (773) 995-3938
Illinois Capital Access Program (CAP)
The Illinois Capital Access Program (CAP) is designed to encourage financial institutions to make loans to small and new businesses that do not qualify under conventional lending policies. CAP is a form of loan portfolio insurance, which provides additional reserve coverage to the lender on loan defaults. By participating in CAP, lenders have available to them a proven financing mechanism to meet the needs of financial institutions and Illinois small businesses.
Patriot Express Loan Initiative
The new Patriot Express loan is offered by SBA’s network of participating lenders nationwide and features our fastest turnaround time for loan approvals. Loans are available up to $500,000 and qualify for SBA’s maximum guaranty of up to 85 percent for loans of $150,000 or less and up to 75 percent for loans over $150,000 up to $500,000. For loans above $350,000, lenders are required to take all available collateral.
Enterprise Zone Program
The Illinois Enterprise Zone Program is designed to stimulate economic growth and neighborhood revitalization in economically depressed areas of the state. This is accomplished through state and local tax incentives, regulatory relief, and improved governmental services.