Ann Arbor to open applications for guaranteed income pilot program

Applications for the city of Ann Arbor’s guaranteed income pilot program for entrepreneurs, managed by Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan (U-M), will open Oct. 2-13. 

One hundred eligible applicants will be randomly selected to receive payments of $528 per month from early 2024 to 2026. Another 100 applicants will be randomly selected to participate in a research study of the program. Although they will not receive monthly payments, they “will be paid as a token of appreciation for taking similar surveys as the participants who receive the payments,” according to a statement from U-M.

Applicants must be Ann Arbor residents, have income below 225% of the federal poverty level, be 18 or older, and be engaged in some business activity. Kristin Seefeldt, associate director of Poverty Solutions, explains in an email that the last requirement has been left purposefully broad in order to reach the widest audience possible.

“This pilot is about celebrating residents who do much to strengthen our community but are still struggling to make ends meet,” Seefeldt says in U-M’s press release. “Both the funded and unfunded participants are vital to the success of this study.”

To make the application accessible, Seefeldt says members of the Poverty Solutions team will be present at Ann Arbor District Library branches to assist applicants who may not have internet access. She also says Poverty Solutions is working alongside several community partners and social service agencies in order to reach as many possible applicants as they can.

“We will be holding a community information session at the downtown public library,” Seefeldt says. “We hope to have some answers about potential benefit impacts soon.”

Those interested in applying for the pilot or finding more information can visit the Guaranteed Income to Grow Ann Arbor website. For additional information or alternative arrangements to apply, applicants can contact Poverty Solutions directly at

Rylee Barnsdale is a Michigan native and longtime Washtenaw County resident. She wants to use her journalistic experience from her time at Eastern Michigan University writing for the Eastern Echo to tell the stories of Washtenaw County residents that need to be heard.
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