City seeking input on potential guaranteed basic income for artists pilot program

The City’s Office of Arts & Culture is seeking input from local artists and creatives on a potential Guaranteed Basic Income for Artists (GBI) program.

“Basic income programs have produced positive outcomes for individuals and families, and we are eager to try this approach in Sacramento,” said Mayor Darrell Steinberg. “Many artists struggle to get by financially, and a small infusion of funds could give them the ability to focus on their work without fear.”

Funding for the program would come from the $10 million in Federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding for the arts and creative economy, which was approved as part of the Mayor’s ARP spending framework.

“The City recognizes that artists and creative workers have experienced significant economic instability, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Cultural and Creative Economy Manager Megan Van Voorhis. “We are interested in exploring different solidarity-economy concepts that address that instability, along with systemic racism and inequity, to support Sacramento’s creative workers.

The program for artists is not the only guaranteed basic income initiative the City of Sacramento is exploring. As part of the Mayor’s ARP spending framework, the City Council also allocated $750,000 to expand the Direct Investment Program in Sacramento managed by United Way. This community pilot program offers a guaranteed basic income for residents, regardless of their profession.

Artists and creatives located in the city of Sacramento can provide their input on the potential program by filling out the brief survey on the Office of Arts & Culture’s website.

The Guaranteed Basic Income for Artists pilot program is expected to go to City Council for budget approval in the coming weeks. If approved by City Council, the project is expected to launch in the summer.

%d bloggers like this: