Los Angeles, Atlanta Among Cities Joining Coalition To Test Universal Basic Income

Forbes – by Rachel Sandler

Mayors in Los Angeles, Atlanta and nine other U.S. cities said Monday they will work to launch universal basic income pilot programs, a growing sign that political leaders are beginning to take the idea of guaranteed income seriously in the wake of the pandemic.


The mayors of Los Angeles; Oakland, California; Atlanta, Georgia; Tacoma, Washington, Newark, New Jersey; Saint Paul, Minnesota; Jackson, Mississippi; Compton, California; Shreveport, Louisiana and Stockton, California, have joined Mayors For A Guaranteed Income, a coalition advocating for UBI policies, or the idea of giving out recurring cash payments to all individuals without any strings attached.

Mayors For A Guaranteed Income was founded by Michael Tubbs, the 29-year-old mayor of Stockton who launched one of the first guaranteed income pilots in the U.S. last year, along with the Economic Security Project, a non-profit supporting the idea of creating an income floor for all Americans.

Though the coalition will advocate collectively for a guaranteed income and share information, each city will launch their own pilot with separate funding streams, either by creating a working group to find room in the city budget or by forming public/private partnerships, Tubbs told Forbes.

Tubbs said the pandemic and the unrest caused by the death of George Floyd, who was allegedly apprehended for using a counterfeit $20 bill before he was killed, pushed him to announce the coalition now.


“It’s taken COVID-19 where direct cash payments are part of the solution offered by the federal government, so I just thought the time was right to organize mayors around the idea because we live in a time of pandemics,” Tubbs said. “If it’s not COVID-19 this year, it’ll be an earthquake next year, a hurricane the year after or fire. Folks need to build economic resilience in our cities now.”

When Tubbs announced Stockton’s program in 2017, which gives $500 monthly to 125 residents, it garnered attention from the media and other politicians as one of the first serious UBI tests in the U.S. The 18 month pilot—which began doling out money in February 2019—ended in June, but was renewed earlier this month until January 2021. Tubbs said the program has been beneficial, with most recipients spending money on groceries and utility bills. Anecdotally, Tubbs said, the $500 was a lifeline for people waiting for coronavirus unemployment assistance. One recipient was able to take unpaid time off from an hourly position to interview for another job with more benefits, Tubbs added.


Guaranteed income has a long history dating back to political theorist Thomas Paine, who in 1797 proposed a form of a lump sum granted to all citizens. Martin Luther King Jr. also supported the idea in his fight to eradicate poverty. More recently, researchers in the U.S., Finland, Kenya, Canada and the Netherlands have begun conducting their own small scale UBI pilot programs. But the once-far-fetched policy has gotten mainstream attention amid the pandemic after Congress seriously debated the idea of giving regular direct cash payments to Americans. “I think the pandemic exposed just how fragile the economic underpinnings of our society are,” Tubbs said. “COVID-19 has put us in the midst of another Great Depression which necessitates bold, New Deal-type investments in our people and our social safety net.”


4 thoughts on “Los Angeles, Atlanta Among Cities Joining Coalition To Test Universal Basic Income

  1. Thanks, (((rachel sandler))).

    They’re not “beginning” to take it seriously, they have been. That’s one of the purposes of the scamdemic.

    A transition to ease the low hanging fruit into communism under the guise of financial crisis “caused” by the whole lying stinking shite show.

    She of course could NEVER come to such a conclusion, as ALL the fingers would point directly to her cabal.

  2. What I found most disturbing about this article was the reference to Thomas Paine promoting universal basic income. It sent a chill through me. I am only beginning to learn more on Paine’s position, but just came across this:

    “Returning to the original point regarding the fairness of redistributing income from the wealthy to the un- or under-employed: Paine foresees this objection by calling for a universal basic income. In other words, he thinks that it should not be granted on the basis of need. That’s because, for one thing, he bases his whole argument on the equality of natural rights. All human beings alike are deprived of their natural right of free and full access to all of the land and its resource in societies that enforce landed property rights.”

    The quote is from an article entitled, “Paine on Basic Income and Human Rights.” Full article here is interested:


    So, was it that Paine saw, like Henry, that our national resources belong to us and any profits from them should be shared among American Nationals? I think that might be it. I don’t think he was saying, let’s be fully communistic and forcefully take from some to give to others.

    Oh the timing of this. So smoothly they move the pieces into place. Create epic fear, devastate the economy resulting in horrible struggle and suffering of the people, stoke chaos and division, and then sail right in with the commie safety net of gov stipends. Me thinks Paine would weep.


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