Stock ScottsHB3656SPRINGFIELD – To prioritize the safety of first responders, Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) championed new requirements drivers must adhere to when approaching an emergency vehicle on the side of the road.

“First responders prioritize Illinois residents’ safety every day,” Munoz said. “We need to come together to protect the individuals on the front line who are assisting roadside emergencies. Slow down and move over when approaching any vehicle on the side of the road.”

Under the new law, drivers must change lanes, reduce and maintain a safe speed, proceed with caution, be prepared to stop and leave a safe distance until passing an emergency vehicle. The visual signal, such as flashing lights, is an indication to drivers that they are approaching a hazardous condition when circumstances are not immediately clear.

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DCEO B2BCHICAGO – Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) is encouraging local businesses struggling from pandemic losses to apply for the latest round of the Back to Business grant program before the Oct. 13 deadline.

Overall, the B2B program will provide $250 million in American Rescue Plan dollars for small businesses negatively affected by the pandemic. Grants will range from $5,000 to $150,000 per business and can be used to cover a wide range of operations, such as staff and overhead costs.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and show the diversity of our state,” Munoz said. “Throughout the pandemic, we have continued to see businesses close their doors. I strongly encourage business owners to take advantage of this grant opportunity before it closes.”

Priority is given to businesses in hard-hit industries, in hard-hit areas, and with revenues less than $5 million, as well as businesses that have not yet received any government assistance.

More than 45 businesses in the district Munoz represents have already received nearly $2.3 million in grants. They include restaurants, medical centers, beauty parlors, art studios and more demonstrating the diversity of the local small business community and how many different kinds of businesses are eligible for grants.

“A large number of grants have already awarded to businesses in the 1st District, but there is still funding available” Munoz said. “Business owners and employees have worked tirelessly to provide for the community – now it’s time for us to help them.”

Learn more about the B2B grant program and start an application on the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity website. The deadline to submit an application is Oct. 13.

Rebuild IllinoisCHICAGO – Bourdeau-Griffin Interiors & Architectural Supplies, Inc. will receive nearly $2 million in state funding to create a business hub and development center on the Chicago’s South Side, Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) announced Thursday.

“This funding will fuel economic development in our community,” Munoz said. “I’m pleased to see funds go to a business that will expand and bring more jobs to the 1st District.”

Bourdeau-Griffin Interiors & Architectural Supplies, Inc. is expected to receive $1,901,518 to create a business hub and development center hub on the South Side of Chicago for interior designers, architects, contractors, artists, business owners and buyers.  

Frantzie Bourdeau-Griffin began experimenting with designer products in the 1980s to find a way to serve interior design clients at an affordable price. The company has since established a reputation for quality and innovation.

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Senator MunozSPRINGFIELD – Minority and women-owned businesses will be accepted for participation in the state’s Business Enterprise Program if they have already been certified by Chicago or Cook County’s program thanks to a measure sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago) that was signed into law today.

The Business Enterprise Program was developed to ensure that businesses owned by minorities, women and people with disabilities are awarded at least 20% of the total dollar amount of state contracts.

“Minority-owned businesses are often at a disadvantage compared to other businesses in the state,” Munoz said. “These businesses will now have a better chance to compete for state contracts.”

The new law requires the Business Enterprise Program to recognize and accept the certifications of businesses certified as minority-owned businesses or women-owned businesses by the city of Chicago, Cook County, or other entities approved by the Business Enterprise Program Council for purposes of participating in the program.

“Illinois is a very diverse state,” Munoz said. “It’s important that the contracts we award reflect that diversity. That’s one more way we can remove the barriers minorities face in the economy.”

The law takes effect Jan. 1, 2022.

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