Pilot program offering cash payment to financially strapped families now taking applications

Residents in Atlanta who qualify can now apply for the Mayors for a Guaranteed Income Pilot Program or I.M.P.A.C.T.

Three hundred Atlanta residents are going to receive direct cash payments approved by city leaders and funded with taxpayer money. While the program was approved by the Atlanta City Council, there were some concerns over who controls the $2 million in taxpayer money.

"To provide eligible low- and moderate-income individuals with a monthly stipend of $500 per month for up to 12 months due to a memorandum of understanding," District 2 City Council Member Amir Farokhi explained to the Atlanta City Council during a meeting back in October.


Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms is joining about 50 other mayors in the program. It offers a direct cash payments plan for those living on the margin. It could be for as long as 12 months or $6,000 total. The money would not be a loan, but an investment by the city in the qualified resident.

"We are seizing this moment to realize Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s vision for addressing economic security and pervasive poverty," said Mayor Bottoms. "Dr. King said, ‘The curse of poverty has no justification in our age.' In the spirit of Dr. King's vision for the beloved community, the launch of the I.M.P.A.C.T. program takes us another step closer to creating One Atlanta—an affordable, resilient and equitable Atlanta. Thank you to the Urban League of Greater Atlanta and Mayors for a Guaranteed Income for leading and joining us in this impactful work."

The city would set aside $2 million for the pilot program. The program, with some overhead administrative costs, will be run by non-profits. The $2 million will go to the Urban League of Greater Atlanta to launch the pilot program with a $500,000 being put up by I.M.P.A.C.T. The city will use two outside resources to administer the donations.

"We are honored that Mayor Bottoms chose the Urban League of Greater Atlanta to facilitate I.M.P.A.C.T., a guaranteed income research program for City of Atlanta residents in need of a helping hand," said Nancy Flake Johnson, President and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Atlanta. "The timing couldn’t be more relevant to so many families hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are in an excellent position to partner with the Mayor and the City based on our 100+ years history of proven programs to empower people in Atlanta who have been marginalized. This initiative aligns with our new Financial Empowerment and Emergency Relief Center (FEERC) – an integrated person-to-person economic mobility framework. It gives us another tool to help clients bridge their financial gaps and move toward financial independence."

To learn more about the program or to apply go to ulgacoaimpact.org.