New federal stimulus checks aren’t coming anymore, but state and local governments are coming up with their own programs to help people affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Several state and local governments have introduced programs offering direct payments to individuals. Now, Los Angeles has also come up with a plan to give direct payments to some of its residents. These Los Angeles coronavirus stimulus checks, however, aren’t exactly the type of checks that we have seen so far from the federal government. Rather, they are part of the sample project for a guaranteed basic income program.
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Last week, the Los Angeles city council approved a $40 million Basic Income Guaranteed: Los Angeles Economic Assistance Pilot (BIG:LEAP) program. Under the program, around 3,000 families, who are living in poverty, will get $1,000 a month for 12 months. The recipients will be free to spend the money on whatever they want.
The application process for these Los Angeles coronavirus stimulus checks has already started. The authorities started accepting applications from Friday last week and will continue to accept them until Nov. 7 at 11:59 pm. From the total number of applicants, the city will randomly pick 3,203 families.
“We’re taking a big leap forward in our generational fight to end poverty,” LA Mayor Eric Garcetti said last week while announcing the start of the application period for the BIG:LEAP program.
Those interested in applying for the program need to visit bigleap.lacity.org. The program is estimated to support 10,000 and 12,000 residents. One of the eligibility requirements is that the family needs to have at least one child. For more information on the program, you need to contact Councilman Curren Price's district office at (323) 846-2651.
Guaranteed Basic Income Program: How It Could Help
Los Angeles’ one-year guaranteed basic income program will be managed by the city’s new Community Investment for Families Department. Also, the results of the program will be used for a research study by the University of Southern California and the University of Pennsylvania.
The study will primarily look at the impact of the program on the household’s mental health. Also, the study would look into the results in relation to food security, housing security, parenting, employment and family dynamics.
Moreover, the researchers will compare the results against a control group that doesn’t get any money from the program. Additionally, the mayor believes the research will help them to study the impact of the program by neighborhood, age, ethnicity and family type.
LA is not the only city to experiment with a guaranteed basic income. Many other cities, such as Long Beach and Compton in Southern California, have come up with or are considering similar programs as well. Chicago is also considering a one-year pilot program that would give $500 monthly payments to 5,000 low-income households. California, earlier this year, also pledged $35 million for the basic income pilots.