BEP Webinar DatesFunds will Enable Businesses Throughout Illinois to Identify, Compete for, and Win Government Contracts – Deadline to Apply is July 10, 2020

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) today announced a new grant opportunity for the renewal or establishment of new Illinois Procurement Technical Assistance Centers (PTACs) – a statewide network focused on matching small business with governmental entities seeking goods and services that the businesses offer. Through a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) released today, the State will make up to $816,000 available in federal and state funds for new or existing community-based PTACs to offer continued support in helping small businesses become certified so they can identify and obtain contracts with local government and their contractors.

The Illinois PTACs are the portal for small businesses looking to enter the world of government contracting. These centers provide one-on-one counseling, technical information, market research and training to existing businesses interested in selling their goods and services to local, state, and/or federal government agencies. The Illinois PTAC collaborates with Department of Defense (DoD) and other Federal, State, and local agencies working cooperatively with them to accomplish the mission of this program.

PTACs play a critical role in helping small businesses apply for lucrative government contracts. In fact, Illinois businesses won nearly 800 government contracts – worth over $1.1 billion in FY 2019, with the help of the Illinois PTAC program, while creating 489 and saving 693 jobs. The matching grant will allow current and proposed new centers to provide technical assistance through the employment of professional, experienced advisors and may cover costs associated with salary, fringe benefits, facility and indirect costs associated with the PTAC.

The Illinois PTAC program has served as a statewide resource for businesses to obtain procurement technical assistance services for the over 35 years. There are currently cooperative agreements with 7 host organizations that serve the entire state. These local centers provide procurement technical assistance at 9 physical locations.

To help more minority- and women-owned businesses become certified for government work, PTACs provide one-on-one guidance and training on the local, state, and federal minority and women business certification programs.

In addition to guidance on certification, PTACs host focused outreach events and collaboration with other state and federal agency efforts targeting these special groups. PTACs make a concerted effort to seek out and assist small business concerns, Small Disadvantaged Businesses concerns (SDB), Women-Owned Small Businesses concerns (WOSB), HUBZone small business concerns, and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business concerns (SDVOSB), historically black colleges or universities and Minority Institutions (HCBCU/MIs).

Eligible applicants will include qualified Illinois universities, colleges, chambers of commerce and other non-profit business development related organizations that are interested in hosting and operating an Illinois PTAC. All eligible organizations interested in becoming an Illinois PTAC are invited to submit an application to the NOFO, found HERE.

For interested applicants, an optional Technical Assistance Informational meeting will take place on June 17, 2020 at 10 AM Please register by clicking the following link: Join meeting.The meeting number (access code) is: 285 495 267; meeting password: anHXKgFQ553; for call-in: 1-312-535-8110.

More information:

  • CMS Business Enterprise Program (BEP) is holding free weekly webinars, every Friday from 2 - 3 p.m. for current and potential BEP certified vendors. (See flyer attached)
  • DCEO Office of Minority Economic Empowerment (OMEE) webinars:

Saturday, June 13, 2020 - 12:00p.m.-1:00p.m. – All in for Women Businesses, click here to register:

Wednesday, June 17, 2020 – 9:00 a.m. –10:00 a.m. please click here to register.

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