News & Blog

UPDATES & EVENTS: OCTOBER 2019

// UPDATES & REMINDERS + GOOD TO KNOW:

 Illinois Manufacturing Month – Tour Local Small Businesses
Did you know the manufacturing industry employs more than 11,700 people in Champaign County? Join Champaign County EDC and The Atkins Group for tours at local companies, including Advanced Filtration Systems on October 29 and APL Engineered Materials on October 30! Tours are open to the public and free to attend. Learn more + register: https://www.mfgday.com/events?host=Champaign+County+EDC

Illinois’ State Trade and Export Promotion (ISTEP) Program – 2019/2010 Group Trade Mission Schedule Released
Illinois’ State Trade and Export Promotion (ISTEP) program provides Illinois’ small businesses with both financial and technical assistance to increase their exports. Learn more about this program, including Group Trade Missions, and how we can help you: http://www.cusbdc.org/illinois-state-trade-and-export-promotion-istep/. Assistance is also available in Spanish, French, Italian, and Portuguese.

New Illinois Law: Employers Can No Longer Ask for Past Salary Information
Governor JB Pritzker signed into law an amendment to the Illinois Equal Pay Act that bans employers and employment agencies from asking about applicants’ past wage and compensation histories or using such information to screen candidates for a job. The new law took effect on September 29, 2019. Department of Labor staff is available to answer questions from both employers and employees on the new law and can be reached on DOL’s Equal Pay Act Hotline: 866-372-4365.

New Illinois Law: Illinois Employers Must Provide Sexual Harassment Training and Other Employee Protections
On August 9, 2019, Governor JB Pritzker signed the Workplace Transparency Act (WTA) into law. The act strengthens protections for employees and responsibilities for Illinois employers. Among other protections, Illinois employers will be required to train employees on sexual harassment prevention, effective January 1, 2020. The act also requires employers to report to the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) the number of adverse judgments or administrative rulings involving sexual harassment and unlawful discrimination on a yearly basis, beginning July 1, 2020.

SBA Small Business Awards Nominations
National Small Business Week will take place May 3-9, 2020. Nominations are now open for SBA’s Small Business Week Awards! In addition to the typical national awards – Small Business Person of the Year, Exporter of the Year, 8(a) Graduate of the Year – the SBA Illinois District will also be opening some new categories this year, including Young Entrepreneur of the Year, an Encore Entrepreneur of the Year, a Rural Small Business of the Year, and a Family-Owned Business of the Year. Nomination forms and guidelines are available at www.sba.gov/IL and www.sba.gov/NSBW. The deadline to apply is January 7, 2020.

2020 Workshop Schedule – Ideas Wanted
We’re in the process of building out our workshop & seminar schedule for January – December 2020. If you have ideas of topics you’d like us to cover, please email us at info@cusbdc.org.

// YOU ARE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE FOLLOWING SBDC EVENTS:

 SBDC Office Hours at Champaign Public Library (Launch)
SBDC Director Don Elmore hosts open office hours (9:30 AM – 12 PM) at Launch twice per month. Launch at the Library business services include a walk-in coworking space, seminars, meeting rooms, and resources to help start, manage, and grow your business. Visit champaign.org/launch for more information.
Date: Thursday, November 7, 2019|
Time: 9:30 AM – 12 PM
Location: Champaign Public Library – 200 W. Green Street, Champaign, IL 61820
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/sbdc-office-hours-champaign-public-library-3/2019-11-07/

SBDC Workshop: Social Media 101: A Beginner’s Guide
Presented By: Clanin Marketing
Ideal for those about to start their social media strategies, this workshop will cover the various social media platforms and their targeted users, the importance of handles and hashtags, ways to post and schedule to social media, and many other best practices.
Date: Thursday, November 14, 2019
Time: 11:30 AM – 1 PM
Location: Champaign Public Library (Robeson A & B) – 200 W. Green Street, Champaign, IL 61820
RSVP: Free to attend – registration required to secure a spot. Limited space available. RSVP online at cusbdc.org/events, email info@cusbdc.org, or call 217-378-8535. All materials will be provided.
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/sbdc-workshop-social-media-101-beginners-guide/

SBDC Workshop: Starting Your Business in Illinois
Presented By: Don Elmore, Director of the Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC
Thinking about starting a business in Illinois? This informative workshop helps entrepreneurs understand many of the steps and requirements. You’ll be taken step-by-step through a variety of topics and have the opportunity to ask questions.
Date: Tuesday, November 19, 2019
Time: 5:30 – 7:30 PM
Location: Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC – 1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100, Champaign, IL 61820
RSVP: Free to attend, registration required to secure a spot. Materials will be provided. RSVP at cusbdc.org, by emailing info@cusbdc.org, or calling 217-378-8535.
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/sbdc-workshop-starting-business-illinois-2-2019-11-19/
*This workshop is offered on a monthly basis. Visit our Events Calendar (http://www.cusbdc.org/events/) to see all upcoming dates and times.

PTAC Services at CUSBDC
Keli Krueger-Huhra, Director of the Illinois Procurement Technical Assistance Center at Bradley University
Need expert assistance with government contracting? We can help. Illinois Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) are resources for small businesses looking to enter the world of government contracting. The centers provide one-on-one counseling, technical information, marketing assistance and training to existing businesses interested in selling their goods and services to local, state, and/or federal government agencies.
Date: Wednesday, November 20, 2019
Time: 10 AM – 4 PM
Location: Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC – 1817 S. Neil Street, Suite 100, Champaign, IL 61820
RSVP: Small businesses in our area who need expert assistance with government contracting may schedule appointments with Keli Krueger-Huhra, Illinois PTAC Director at Bradley University, by contacting us at ptac@cusbdc.org or calling 217-378-8535.
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/ptac-services-cusbdc/2019-11-20/
*PTAC services are offered on a monthly basis. Visit our Events Calendar (http://www.cusbdc.org/events/) to see all upcoming dates and times.
**To learn more about and/or better understand PTAC services, watch this video: https://youtu.be/_mX88Sr18x8.

SBDC Office Hours at Champaign Public Library (Launch)
SBDC Director Don Elmore hosts open office hours (9:30 AM – 12 PM) at Launch twice per month. Launch at the Library business services include a walk-in coworking space, seminars, meeting rooms, and resources to help start, manage, and grow your business. Visit champaign.org/launch for more information.
Date: Thursday, November 21, 2019
Time: 9:30 AM – 12 PM
Location: Champaign Public Library – 200 W. Green Street, Champaign, IL 61820
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/sbdc-office-hours-champaign-public-library-3/2019-11-21/

Small Business Saturday® – November 30, 2019
This November 30, be a part of the 10th annual holiday shopping tradition that brings together communities in support of their favorite small businesses. Find out how you can get in on one of the biggest days for the Shop Small Movement: https://www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/shop-small/.

SBDC Workshop: Social Media 201: Level Up
Presented By: Clanin Marketing
Level up your social media presence with ways to create thumb-stopping content, best practices for going live, utilizing the latest ad options, finding new customers, and more. Familiarity with social media is recommended.
Date: Friday, December 13, 2019
Time: 11:30 AM – 1 PM
Location: Champaign Public Library (Robeson A & B) – 200 W. Green Street, Champaign, IL 61820
RSVP: Free to attend – registration required to secure a spot. Limited space available. RSVP online at cusbdc.org/events, email info@cusbdc.org, or call 217-378-8535. All materials will be provided.
Link: http://www.cusbdc.org/event/sbdc-workshop-social-media-201-level/

// WHO WE ARE + CONTACT US:
To learn more about what the Illinois SBDC at Champaign County EDC does and how we can help you, watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pACBxITj1ds. To make an appointment with the SBDC, register on the website at http://www.cusbdc.org/ (click the red ‘Become a Client’ button), email info@cusbdc.org, or contact:

  • Don Elmore, SBDC Director: don@cusbdc.org
  • Mariel Huasanga, SBDC International Trade Center Director: mariel@cusbdc.org

Connect with the SBDC on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

The Illinois Small Business Development Center at Champaign County EDC is funded through a cooperative agreement between the U.S. Small Business Administration, Illinois Department of Commerce, and the Champaign County Economic Development Corporation; with additional support provided by EDC of Decatur and Macon County and the Midwest Inland Port.