New Jersey Just Completed a 1-Year Basic Income Experiment

Paterson, New Jersey, is giving about 200 residents $400 a month in guaranteed income in an experiment to see if a basic income could help people pay for rent and groceries. The low-income residents were chosen lottery-style and received the $400 on debit cards for 12 months. A survey of the participants indicated that the money was spent on food, rent, and utilities. The program is funded in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania’s Guaranteed Income Center. To qualify for the program, single-person households had to earn less than $38,910 a year, a family of three had to make less than $110,331 a year, and a family of five had to make less than $184,405 a year. Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh recently announced that the program will now be expanded.