Department of Business Affairs & Consumer Protection, Outreach & Education Division
What We Do

Outreach & Education

The Department of Business Affairs & Consumer Protection (BACP) supports the growth of Chicago's small businesses by hosting events and providing resources to help entrepreneurs respond to the needs of a changing world. Our programs include free business workshops, small business expos, and connecting businesses with important business resources.

 

Small Business Center on the Road

The City of Chicago's Office of New Americans and BACP invite small business owners and entrepreneurs to a series of free expos offering business resources on financing, licensing process, tax laws and business networking. More information can be found at the Expo Page. 

Business Education Workshops

BACP offers free Business Education Workshops  every Wednesday and Friday. The classes are open to the public and hosted at City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St. in Room 805. Class topics focus on start-up operations, financing, marketing, social media and more. Classes are taught by industry professionals, not for profit agencies, and city employees.

If you plan on opening a business that requires a business license inspection, plan on attending the Licensing, Permits and Inspections 101 Workshop, offered every month. Another workshop offered each month that may help entrepreneurs learn the process on How to Do Business with the City of Chicago. 

The Business Start-up Certificate Program

The Business Start-Up Certificate Program is free and designed to teach business owners the essential elements of starting and growing a business. Entrepreneurs can earn a Business Start-Up Certificate when they complete a curriculum of BACP Business Education Workshops.

One-on-One Business Counseling at the Small Business Solution Station

The Small Business Solution Station offers free one-on-one business counseling for entrepreneurs. This is where you can talk to an expert about planning, legal issues, small business loans, tax matters or just get expert advice.

Counseling is offered at City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle St. in Room 800. The Solution Station is open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and the last Friday of each month from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Counseling is provided by our partner organizations, SCORE, The Law Project, the Women's Development Center and ACCION Chicago.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is at the Small Business Solution Station from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the last Friday of every month. They have a bilingual (Spanish/English) staff on hand for free one-on-one consultation for small business owners on tax-related matters.

An appointment to visit the Solution Station is not necessary, but can be scheduled by calling 312.744.2086 or emailing BACPoutreach@cityofchicago.org

Give Us Your Feedback

BACP relies on feedback from our customers to improve services. We take customer satisfaction seriously and measure our performance based on your input. Click the button above or the link below to provide feedback on your interaction with BACP. The survey will take no more than two minutes to complete.

Alerts (Outreach & Education)

Severe Alert May 6, 2016 FAQs for the 2017-2018 NBDC and NBDC Specialty Advisor RFP

Most Recent News (Outreach & Education)

Jun 24, 2016 City Small Business Center Is ‘ON THE ROAD’ To The South Shore Cultural Center
Apr 29, 2016 City Takes The Small Business Center ‘ON THE ROAD’ To Pilsen
Mar 3, 2016 Chicago To Host Food Truck Festivals At Daley Plaza And Willis Tower
Feb 26, 2016 City Hosts First Small Business Expo ‘On The Road’ Series For 2016
Feb 25, 2016 City of Chicago Partners With Fifith Third Bank To Expand 2016 Small Business Expo ‘On The Road’ Series

View all News Releases (Outreach & Education)

Supporting Information

Department Main Office

Business Affairs and Consumer Protection

  • Phone: 312.744.6060
    Toll Free:
    TTY: 312.744.1944
    Fax: 312.744.0246
  • 121 N. LaSalle Street
    8th Floor
    Chicago, IL 60602   
    Get Directions