Alameda City Council approves guaranteed basic income pilot program

Alameda City Council on Tuesday passed a guaranteed basic income pilot program. The council approved the program in a 3 to 2 vote. The program is designed to help low-income Alameda residents. 

City staff said about 11,000 households qualify, but only 150 will be selected as part of the pilot program. It could provide the recipients with a $1,000 a month cash payment. 

The city would use funds from the American Rescue Plan act to pay for the program. Similar programs are being piloted in Oakland, San Francisco and Stockton among dozens of other cities.

"I'm really excited that we as a council have a chance to make a direct impact in people's lives and that with this program we might be able to leverage it to provide more benefits or similar benefits to more people," said Mayor Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft. 

The two council members who voted against the pilot program argued the program didn't help enough people. 

Stockton’s program launched in 2019. Oakland’s program launched last year.