Over 80 Cities and Counties Used Federal Pandemic Aid to Fund Universal Basic Income Handouts

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    by Jose Nino, Big League Politics:

    Currently, there are at least 82 municipalities in 29 states conducting universal basic income experiments. This includes over 70 pilot programs created during the past year per a coalition of over 100 American mayors pushing the UBI.

    According to a report by John Haughey of The Epoch Times, Mayors for Guaranteed Income and its coalition members are calling on local governments to roll out pilot programs with federal pandemic assistance from a $350 billion fund for state and local governments within the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), enacted in March 2021.

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    This mayoral group was created by former Stockton, California Mayor Michael Tubbs in June 2020 following the city’s launch, and subsequent expansion of a guaranteed income project.

    During a virtual roundtable discussion held on December 15, 2022, several municipal officials revealed that there is growing public support for basic income programs.

    DePaul University’s Dr. Amanda Kass claimed that the ARPA state and local recovery fund is currently being used “as a seed for long-term policy change.” Kass studies how counties, municipalities, and states, spend federal pandemic aid.

    Before the panel, Kass said that ARPA is the first federal program “that has ever produced this amount of highly flexible aid to nearly all governments in the United States—to tens of thousands of governments.”

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