Committee in Minnesota’s House approves Universal Basic Income Program

Saint Paul, MN: Legislation to establish a basic income program paying at least $500 monthly in direct cash payments was authorized by a Minnesota House panel.

It would be possible to fund the program through 2028 with a one-time $100 million appropriation in fiscal year 2025.

House File 2666 would make this $500 available to qualified individuals across the state for 18–24 months.

People who qualify must have a low household income (defined as less than or equal to 300 percent of the federal poverty threshold), be receiving public benefits, and be in need.

Rep. Athena Hollins (DFL–St. Paul), who is the bill’s sponsor, has stated that everyone should be able to receive the payments in order to alleviate poverty and crime.

According to Hollins, “you’re still a part of that community” regardless of whether you’re a recent immigrant or a migratory worker. “Some areas are counting on these individuals to fill service gaps.”

A basic income program might be established by nonprofits, state and local governments, or tribal governments with the help of competitive funds from the Department of Human Services if this bill were to become law.

Each year, by January of 2027, the agency and the legislature would receive a report from an impartial study committee that had evaluated the program.

There were little constraints on how NGOs may spend or who would obtain the money, according to Rep. Walter Hudson (R-Albertville). It is against the law to ask grantees to prove their identity, residency, citizenship, or income in any other way.

Immigrants in the country illegally or those posing as someone else would receive assistance through this program, according to Hudson. “We won’t even bother to question that; there will be zero documentation.”

A guaranteed basic income program is in place in Minneapolis and St. Paul.

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