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California low-income residents will soon receive $500 per month, no-strings-attached income
The city of Stockton, California, plans to begin giving low-income residents $500 per month, with no strings attached, as a part of a universal basic income program. (2012 file photo/Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

California low-income residents will soon receive $500 per month, no-strings-attached income

Just months from now, low-income residents in Stockton, California, will receive no-strings-attached money to meet their needs, as the city lays the foundation for a universal basic income, KOVR-TV reports.

What’s the story?

The Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration is an experimental program introduced by Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs that will pay low-income residents $500 per month.

“They’re written off,” Tubbs said. “They don’t have the money because there is something wrong with them, and I want to demonstrate that when given the opportunity that people, especially the people of Stockton, will make good choices and the right choices for themselves and their families.”

Another part of the program includes hiring three artists to create murals that will be “used to start a conversation on the universal basic income project so that people will take it upon themselves and go and do research on it, and see how impactful it can be for our community.”

Where is the money coming from?

The program will be funded by the Economic Security Project as a part of the Universal Income Project.

“Universal basic income is a simple idea that could have a radical impact on our society: give people enough money to meet their basic needs, providing everyone in the country with an income floor,” the website reads. “Basic income could eliminate absolute poverty, support entrepreneurship and creativity, and allow every American to share in the prosperity that we have created together as a nation.”

What’s the current status of the program?

A director was hired to oversee the program in February, and now the city is seeking a research partner to help develop eligibility guidelines.

Right now, there are no work requirements for a person to receive the $500 per month. The money will be tracked in the planning phase to see how recipients are spending it.

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