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Ameren offering hardship grants to small businesses and non-profits

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(WSIL) -- Ameren Illinois announced that funding is available for small businesses and non-profits that have fallen behind on their electric bills.

Under the company's COVID-19 Economic Hardship Recovery Program, one-time grants of up to $500 will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis until October 31, 2021, or until the funds are exhausted. 

The company hopes to provide some relief to the small businesses hit hardest by the pandemic. 

"We see the small business and the not-for-profit as really the backbone of these communities and Ameren Illinois is such a community-based organization that these funds are very important to help these organizations get back on their feet, to recover from the pandemic, and then to begin to-to continue their service to our communities," said Mary Heger, Senior Vice President of Customer Experience with Ameren.

To be considered, businesses must have an active, non-residential account, 50 or fewer full-time employees, and a principal office in Illinois.

Eligible businesses may include, but are not limited to: small commercial enterprises, restaurants, clothing stores, hair salons, flower shops, and fitness facilities. Eligible non-profits may include, but are not limited to: schools, day cares, senior centers, religious organizations, community organizations, and charitable organizations.

Grant recipients will have the funds applied to their Ameren Illinois electric account. To apply, visit or call the Ameren Illinois Business Center at 800.232.2477.