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Tipsheet

One US County Begins a Guaranteed Basic Income Program

AP Photo/Tony Dejak

Los Angeles County has officially kicked off its basic income program that gives 1,000 residents $1,000 per month for the next three years. 

According to officials, recipients were chosen at random of a pool of more than 180,000 applicants. 

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"Given the huge number of L.A. County residents who applied, it's abundantly clear that a guaranteed basic income is an idea whose time has come," L.A. County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl told Fox 11 LA. "I'm confident that we will see what other pilots have already shown: that a guaranteed basic income, by giving people a bit of financial breathing room, allows them to stabilize their lives and that of their family." 

The county Board of Supervisors voted to develop the pilot program last year to address poverty and income instability.

Participants must be at least 18 years old, have a household income under $56,000 for a single person or $96,000 for a family of four and have experienced negative impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The L.A. County participants were chosen by the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Guaranteed Income, which is researching guaranteed income programs across the country.

Recipients receive the money via debit card. They range in age from 18 to 91 and live in communities throughout the county, speaking languages including Armenian, Cantonese, Farsi, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish and English, according to officials with Breathe: L.A. County's Guaranteed Income Program. (Fox 11 LA)

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"Three years from now, I feel confident that this L.A. County program will be seen as a foundation stone that led to expanded programs providing economic opportunity and stability to every eligible American household," Kuehl added.

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