City of St. Louis, Offices of the Treasurer and Mayor Announce Launch of the STL Guaranteed Basic Income (STL GBI) Pilot, Outline Timeline and Eligibility

$5 million from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) will provide participants with $500/month for 18-months.

October 10, 2023 | 3 min reading time

The City of St. Louis is proud to announce the launch of the STL Guaranteed Basic Income (STL GBI) Pilot Program. $5 million from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) will provide participants with $500/month for 18-months. 

“Throughout the month of October, my office and our GBI partners are committed to engaging with our community partners to provide education, access, and assistance to those interested in applying for the GBI program,” said Treasurer Adam Layne. “We understand the importance of a collective effort in making this program known and accessible to everyone who needs it.” 

Last December, Mayor Jones signed BB116, sponsored by Ald. Shameem Clark-Hubbard (10), to establish the first Guaranteed Basic Income program in Missouri. Originally planned to enroll 440 families, Jack Dorsey’s #startsmall philanthropic initiative, with operational support from Deaconess Foundation, is contributing $1 million to add an additional 100 participants to the program for a total of 540 participants.

“St. Louis is joining more than 30 municipalities across the country in trying this new, exciting way to financially empower families and lift them out of poverty,” said Mayor Tishaura O. Jones. “President Joe Biden’s expanded child tax shows how direct payments support families and help them afford the essentials, and our 2021 Direct Cash Assistance helped thousands of St. Louisans put food on the table and pay the bills. Now, we are taking the next step with STL Guaranteed Basic Income, and are thrilled to have the support of St. Louis native Jack Dorsey to help even more families make ends meet.” 

Preliminary analysis of GBI programs across the country show how families overwhelmingly use monthly payments for the essentials. According to Stanford University’s Basic Income Lab, the largest share of expenditures went to retail sales and services, food and groceries as well as housing, utilities, and transport. Direct payment programs help recipients get back on their feet and re-enter the workforce.

Washington University in St. Louis’ Social Policy Institute and the Brown School Evaluation Center are partnering with the City for data analysis and evaluation of the program. The academic team will study the impact of the program on the participants’ lives and help them share their stories. 

“Our team at the Social Policy Institute and the Brown School Evaluation Center utilizes research and evaluation to advocate for efforts that create equitable social impact,” said Dr. Stephen Roll. “We are honored to be partnering with the City to understand the impact of this important program. To evaluate the impact of this program, we will be drawing on surveys, credit data, and in-depth interviews with participants to understand all the ways in which GBI is impacting the lives of St. Louis residents.”

Implementation partner FORWARD and payment disbursement partner MoCaFi, will administer the application and distribution process. 

“MoCaFi is honored to be a part of St. Louis’ Guaranteed Basic Income program and to distribute over five million dollars to the city’s residents,” said St. Louis Community Manager Eddie Mungai. “During the pandemic, MoCaFi provided assistance to over 9,000 St. Louis families. This summer, we brought our On Our Block program to the city, hosting financial coaching sessions and helping residents build personalized pathways to wealth. Today, we’re expanding our investment in this city and its future by disbursing funds to families in need. With their Guaranteed Basic Income program, St. Louis serves as an example of how we can address injustice and close the racial wealth gap.” 

The timeline for application as well as eligibility requirements can be found below:

Phase 1: Program Information

October 10th - October 23rd 

Eligible residents interested in being notified when the application window opens are asked to sign up on the website. This page is open to gather reliable contact information for those interested in applying for the program.

Eligible applicants must meet all the following requirements: 

  • St. Louis City resident with a child or dependent under the age of 18 enrolled in a public school (St. Louis Public Schools or a public charter school)
  • A combined household income of less than 170% of the federal poverty level 
  • Experienced negative financial impact due to the COVID-19 pandemic (loss of work, increased childcare costs, and the like)

Phase 2: Application Period

October 23rd – November 1st

We invite all eligible residents to take advantage of this opportunity to apply. Documentation requirements include Photo ID and Proof of School Enrollment (school documentation with parent, guardian, dependent name and address, like a recent report card or enrollment document).

Phase 3: Invitation for Verification

November 6th – November 13th

Applicants chosen via lottery will be invited to submit financial documentation and verification of City of St. Louis residency. Applicants will then be selected on a first come, first serve basis for $500 monthly payments for 18 months.

Programmatic partnership questions should be directed to Becca Belleville, Guaranteed Basic Income Program Manager at

Related Stories

Was this page helpful?      

Comments are helpful!
500 character limit

Feedback is anonymous.