Baltimore Is Sending Out Stimulus Checks

Baltimore Is Sending Out Stimulus Checks

New STIMULUS CHECKS – Here’s Who’s Getting Them

( – When COVID-19 first hit, the federal government scrambled to figure out how to bolster the economy and help Americans through the unknown difficulties ahead. From enhanced unemployment benefits to stimulus checks deposited directly into bank accounts, there were plenty of ways the government tried to ease the peoples’ burdens. Now, the City of Baltimore, Maryland, is trying out a new program to help young families in poverty make ends meet.

Baltimore Launches Young Families Success Fund

From May 2 to May 9, the city of Baltimore accepted applications for its Young Families Success Fund pilot program. The city will provide 200 young parents with monthly payments of $1,000 to be used however they choose. Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott (D) hopes the additional income will be used for childcare, medical bills, or to help parents find better jobs and full-time employment.

This is not a universal basic income program, as not everyone is eligible. Applicants must be between 18-24 years old and have caretaking responsibilities for children. The city plans to follow up with the program participants with surveys and interviews and compare the results with a 156-person control group that will not receive the monthly cash installments.

Rolling Out Guaranteed Income Programs

In Baltimore, the guaranteed income program will be funded by $4.8 million of the city’s federal American Rescue Plan Act budget and donations from the following organizations, among others:

  • CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
  • The Zanvyl and Isabelle Krieger Fund
  • The Annie E. Casey Foundation
  • The France-Merrick Foundation
  • The Abell Foundation

Various organizations helped plan the new fund, but it was modeled after similar programs like one in California called the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration (SEED). That program provided $500 to 125 people for 24 months, which apparently provided for the “enhanced well-being” of participants and boosted full-time employment by 12% compared to the control group, which only increased full-time employment by 5%.

Pushback for Universal Payment Programs

While some liberal cities believe these programs work every time, many people have pushed back on the idea, suggesting it will incentivize some people to work less, use the money on non-necessities, or perhaps even illegal substances. Economist Nate Brady believes that if a universal basic income gets too high, the cost of labor will increase, ending with an increase in the cost of living — something Americans are already experiencing with record-high inflation.

The new program in Baltimore, along with a similar one in Montgomery County, Maryland, will provide more data on whether or not such a payment actually helps a community or at least certain groups, such as low-income families.

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