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Alexandria’s guaranteed income pilot program delayed

Earlier this year, the City of Alexandria dedicated some of its American Rescue Plan Act funding to a program that would guarantee a basic income, but now one of the non-profits working on the pilot said it’s hit some delays with no estimate of when the pilot will start.

The pilot program is now called, in a sort of transparent backronym, Alexandria’s Recurring Income for Success and Equity (ARISE). It will focus on 150 families who will receive a $500 monthly cash payment for 24 months, with no strings attached on its use. Eligibility has been set at 50% of the area median income or below.

The Department of Community & Human Services (DCHS) has been overseeing the pilot in cooperation with Bruhn Morris Foundation and ACT for Alexandria, two local non-profits. ACT for Alexandria said in an email that “while great progress has been made” there have also been some delays.

“Enrollment has been postponed and an estimated start date for applications is not yet available,” ACT for Alexandria said. “DCHS is in the process of securing a research partner to study and report on the outcomes of the pilot and to identify a partner to disburse the funds.”

ACT for Alexandria said the hope is to start the program sometime in spring 2022.

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