CHICAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — Chicago will launch a universal basic income program which will pay $500 a month to 5,000 low-income families.
Most of the funds will come from President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan and was included in the city’s $16.7 billion 2022 budget, according to WFLD.
Applicants for the program will be chosen at random, but must earn less than $35,000 a year to qualify.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot hailed the program as a means to lift people out of poverty, but critics have said it encourages people to avoid work during a labor shortage.
“I am beyond excited to announce the passage of the most progressive and forward-looking budget in our city’s history,” Lightfoot said in a statement.
Forty other cities, including Los Angeles, have considered plans to launch universal basic income programs.
Chicago’s budget also includes millions for police, violence prevention, and mental health programs.