RFP for Financial Partner for Guaranteed Income Pilot Program

I. Introduction

The City of Alameda (City) seeks a partner (Financial Partner) to conduct the payment facilitation for its City’s Guaranteed Income Pilot Program (Pilot Program). The selected Financial Partner will work with the “Implementing Partner” and the City to begin cash distribution to selected Pilot Program participants by Spring/Summer 2023.

Guaranteed Income (GI) programs provide a flat monthly cash payment to a defined population. These programs are distinct from other financial assistance programs—they are unconditional, unrestricted, and include regular payments for a period of time, often concurrently with collecting survey and participation data that helps inform larger policy and program development focused on alleviating poverty. Unlike other government assistance programs, direct cash recipients are empowered to make their own decisions on how to spend the money in ways that best meet their basic needs, which allows for dignity and self-determination.

The selected organization will administer the financial aspects of the Pilot Program that will consist of providing $1,000 per month to approximately 150 low-income households in Alameda over a 24-month period. The Financial Partner’s role will require close collaboration with both the City and other partners involved in the Pilot Program. Additional program partners will likely include 1) an Implementing Partner responsible for administering the Pilot Program and 2) a “Research Partner” responsible for completing a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the program impacts.

The City is working with the advocacy and research organization Mayors for a Guaranteed Income (MGI) as a consultant on this project.

II. Overview

The City is a community of approximately 80,884 residents in the San Francisco Bay Area. On May 17, 2022, the Alameda City Council directed staff to develop a Guaranteed Income Pilot Program focusing on low income residents. In broad terms, the Pilot Program will provide $1,000 per month to approximately 150 households over a two-year period. The Pilot Program will be funded through the City’s allocation of funds from the federal American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA). The City anticipates working with the Implementing Partner to launch the Pilot Program in the Spring/Summer 2023.

In addition to this RFP, the City will be issuing RFPs for two other program partners:

  • Implementing Partner—responsible for administering the program. Responsibilities will include: program support, collecting applications from potential recipients, selection and enrollment of recipients, and collaboration with other partners on outreach and communication efforts.
  • Research Partner—to design and conduct a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the Pilot Program’s contribution to financial stability of the recipients, determine methodology for selection of program and control group participants, and to help secure benefit waivers from state and federal agencies.

An “Advisory Board” composed of community and advocacy organizations, individuals with lived experience (i.e. low-income persons), and City staff will be created to help inform decision-making on key programmatic elements.

III. Program Goals 

GI is an income distribution program that provides individuals with a fixed amount of money each month to cover basic living expenses. The goals of the City’s Pilot Program are threefold:

  1. Limit economic volatility and empower recipients to make their own decisions on spending money in a way that best meets their basic needs, allowing for dignity and self-determination.
  2. Inform public policy and program development designed to alleviate poverty at the local, state and federal levels.
  3. Contribute to a change in the narrative surrounding the larger discussion of poverty in Alameda and beyond.

IV. Scope of Work

The role of the Financial Partner will require continued collaboration with both the City and its other program partners. The Financial Partner will conduct payment facilitation of the GI funds over the 24-month duration of the Pilot Program.

Required Activities

  1. Preparation of financial product(s) for the purpose of distributing payments to Pilot Program participants 
    • Define payment distribution mechanism(s)
    • Prepare participant enrollment process
    • Provide enrollment/payment options for undocumented participants
    • Provide training to City staff and Implementing Partner on enrollment process and financial product(s)

2. Enroll selected Pilot Program participants to ensure first payment is received for all participants once Pilot Program launches

3. Work with City staff and Implementing Partner to provide training/orientation to Pilot Program participants so that functionality of financial product(s), payment schedule, and other key information is conveyed

4. Facilitate cash payments  to Pilot Program participants on a monthly or biweekly basis, depending upon final Pilot Program design 

  • Provide support to City staff, Implementing Partner, and Pilot Program participants as necessary throughout program duration. Support would include being available to troubleshoot issues for Pilot Program participants and Implementing Partner.
  • Meet periodically with Implementing Partner and City staff during disbursement period to review Pilot Program status

If determined necessary during program design, collect aggregate and anonymize Pilot Program participant spending data and transfer spending data to Research Partner.

Other Requirements and Qualifications

  1.  Demonstrates capacity to deliver services (as needed) in languages other than English that are most spoke in Alameda, including English, Spanish, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Korean.
  2.  Ability to hire and maintain consistent staffing to meet program goals.
  3.  Experience working with local government policy makers and community-based organizations preferred.
  4. Meet a minimum of monthly with the City and program partners to discuss status and to make necessary adjustments.

Please note that this list is not exhaustive. Additional activities may arise throughout the course of the Pilot Program.

V. RFP Schedule

Dates and Times Action
Monday, August 8 RFP Issued
Friday, August 19 Deadline for RFP Questions
Friday, August 26 RFP Q&A Posted
Wednesday, Sept. 7, 4:00p Proposals Due
Week of Sept. 19 RFP Interviews
Week of Sept. 26 Selection of Partner

VI. Submittal Instructions 

Please submit your proposal electronically to GI@alamedaca.gov by 4:00PM PST on Wednesday, September 7.

The proposal should be submitted as a single .PDF file, with the subject line: (Name of Organization) Response to RFP: City of Alameda GI Financial Partner.

Late proposals will not be accepted.

VII. Questions 

Please email any questions regarding the RFP to GI@alamedaca.gov by 4:00PM on Friday, August 19. Answers will be posted on the RFP web page on Friday, August 26.

VIII. Submittal Requirements 

The City is requesting that submitted proposals contain the following information in the ensuing order: 

  1. Table of Contents
  2. Letter of Interest: A letter expressing your interest in being considered as the Financial Partner. Include the name, title, and contact information, including mailing address, phone number, and email address of the person whom the City should contact regarding this response. (1- page maximum).
  3. Project Understanding and Approach: A statement demonstrating your understanding of the proposed project and describing your approach to completing the presented scope of work in a timely and cost-efficient manner (1-page maximum).
  4. Team Organization and Description: Please include an organizational chart and information about the specific relevant experience for the proposed employees and applicable staff. One employee must be designated as the principal contact for the City (1-page maximum).
  5. Key Staff/Team Experience: For key team members, please provide resumes and include examples of experience implementing cash transfer programs. (5-page maximum).
  6. Work Plan, Fee Proposal, and Schedule. Please provide a detailed work plan, task-by-task budget proposal, and implementation schedule. If proposer has additions or suggested amendments to the presented scope of work, please include them in your response.
  7. Comments/Questions on the City Standard Service Provider Agreement: The City’s standard service provider agreement is attached for your consideration (see Exhibit A). If the applicant has any questions/concerns related to the standard form contract, they must be submitted in writing with your response to this Request for Proposals.
  8. Supporting documents (optional): Provide documents, links, communications materials, etc. that provide any relevant background information about the organization and experience with similar projects. 

IX. Selection Process 

Based upon the submitted written responses to this RFP, City’s selection team will review and rank the proposals according to the following criteria:


Total Points

Project Proposal

  • Proposed work plan supports the project's goals; and activities set out in the Scope of Work.
  • Project work plan has a strengths-based, anti-racist, and anti-stigma lens.
  • Applicant demonstrates understanding of the challenges and barriers that low-income residents of Alameda face.
  • Applicant demonstrates understanding of specific barriers and challenges faced by historically excluded communities in Alameda.
  • Project activities are clearly defined and described.
  • Time commitment of staff is appropriate to the project scope.

40 points

Timeline & Budget Proposal

  • Timeline of work is feasible.
  • Budget is in alignment with the proposed activities.
  • Budget and timeline demonstrate understanding of programmatic priorities.
  • This will not be a low-bid contract. However, proposed contract budget, cost controls, program efficiencies, and other budget matters will be taken into consideration.

20 points

Organization Experience

  • Qualifications and relevant organization, staff experience and capacity to perform the proposed work plan.
  • Demonstrated commitment to serving low-income residents and historically excluded communities.
  • Experience effectively partnering with both public entities and private organizations on projects of similar size and scope.

35 points

Ability to meet the City’s standard contract requirements

  • Through execution of the Service Provider Agreement attached as Exhibit A; written confirmation of this condition is required to be eligible to a submit proposal.

5 points

Total Eligible Points


X. Additional Terms and Conditions

  1. Nondiscrimination: Applicants for this RFP shall not discriminate against any interested individual, firm or applicant on the grounds of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, handicap, disability, marital status, pregnancy, sex, age, or sexual orientation.
  2. Permits, Licenses, and Insurance: The successful applicant for this RFP shall, at its sole expense, obtain and maintain during the term of any agreement executed pursuant to this RFP all appropriate permits, certificates, licenses, and insurance including, but not limited to, a City of Alameda Business License which may be required in connection with the performance of services hereunder.
  3. Signatures and Declarations: Each proposal responding to this RFP must be signed on behalf of the submitting entity by an officer authorized to bind the entity to its proposal.
  4. City’s Right to Waive: The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to waive any immaterial irregularities in a proposal responding to this RFP or in the submission of a proposal.
  5. City’s Right to Modify the RFP: The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify this RFP should the City deem that it is in its best interests to do so. Any changes to the RFP requirements will be made by written addendum posted on the City’s website. The failure of an applicant to read any addenda shall have no effect on the validity of such modification.
  6. City’s Right to Suspend or Cancel the RFP: The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to suspend or cancel this RFP in part or in its entirety should the City deem that it is in the City’s best interests to do so.
  7. City’s Right to Reject Any Proposal: The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to reject any proposal responding to this RFP that the City determines does not satisfy the conditions set forth in this RFP, or contains false, misleading, or materially incomplete information. The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to reject all applicants and not to award to any applicant should the City deem that it is in its best interests to do so.
  8. City’s Right to Extend RFP Deadlines: The City reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to extend any of the deadlines listed in this RFP by written addenda should the City deem that it is in its best interests to do so.
  9. Cost of Proposals: All costs incurred during proposal preparation or in any way associated with an applicant’s preparations, submission, presentation or oral interview (if any) shall be the sole responsibility of Applicant.
  10. Liability for RFP Errors: Applicants are solely responsible for all errors and omissions contained in their responses to the RFP.
  11. Proposals Property of City: Upon receipt, each proposal responding to this RFP that an applicant submits to the City becomes the sole property of the City and will not be returned to the applicant.
  12. Oral and Written Explanations: The City shall not be bound by oral explanations or instructions given at any time during the process or after the award. Oral explanations given during the review process and after award become binding only when confirmed in writing by an authorized City official. Written responses to question(s) asked by one proposer will be provided to all applicants to this RFP.
  13. Public Record: All proposals are subject to the Public Records Act.


Exhibit A: City of Alameda Service Provider Agreement(PDF, 532KB) 

Download a PDF of this RFP here(PDF, 1MB).


RFP Questions and Answers


What exact services are required for the financial partner to provide in languages other than English (ex: customer service, mobile platform/app, letters to participants etc)?

The Financial Partner should have the capacity to provide all methods or mediums of communications to program participants in other languages. For example, online banking or mobile platforms should have the capacity to be provided in languages other than English. 

Do you have any caps or limits on the percentage of funds that can be used for administration? 

No, we do not have any limits and this will not be a low-bid contract. However, proposed contract budget, cost controls, program efficiencies, and other budget matters will be taken into consideration.

Is there any software that the winning bidder is expected to use? 

No. We leave this up to the discretion of the proposer.

Is there a blackout period?

No, there is no blackout period and vendors are not prohibited from communicating with members of the City Council during the RFP process. However, selection of the partners will be conducted by a selection committee.

Who is the selection committee and will the bid winner go to council approval? 

The selection committee has not yet been confirmed. It is anticipated that the proposers’ contracts will be presented for City Council approval by November, 2022.

Are you open to multiple respondents on the same proposal? 

We are open to a proposer subcontracting with another agency(ies) or organization(s) to perform certain elements of the scope of work.

Can we submit one application for both the implementation and research partner as we feel like we can do both?  

No. While we are receptive to a proposer applying to perform more than one partner role, for our evaluation purposes, we will need to be able to assess each partner individually. Therefore, please submit two separate responses. The partner role of each submittal should include a clearly defined budget and approach, responding to the corresponding RFP. This response applies to all program partners.

Can the comparison group be pulled from the non-lottery winners and/or those who qualified but chose not to enroll?  

We leave this up to the discretion of the proposer. The proposer should provide an explanation for its recommendation. The final program designed will be determined in collaboration with all program partners and the City.

What are the available funds for the research partner contract to conduct the scope of work outlined in this RFP?

The City Council has allocated $4.6 million in ARPA funds for the pilot program, which includes approximately $3.6 million for the monthly payments to program participants. Therefore approximately $1 million is set aside for the three Program Partners, with any remaining funds being applied to be used to expand the number of program participants. This will not be a low-bid contract. However, proposed contract budget, cost controls, program efficiencies, and other budget matters will be taken into consideration. This response applies to all program partners.

What type of contract will be awarded (i.e. Firm Fixed Price or Time and Materials)?

We have a limited budget and are therefore seeking a firm fixed price contract. 

Whose responsibility will it be to convene and engage the community Advisory Board?

The City will help form and coordinate the community Advisory Board. The convening and day-to-day management will be the responsibility of the Implementation Partner. 

Who is responsible for any costs associated with convening the community advisory board e.g. incentives or travel costs?

If the Advisory Board includes individuals with lived experiences, incentives or stipends for attending Advisory Board meetings would be covered by the Implementing Partner. 

In the submittal requirements on page 6 of the RFP it says: “Key Staff/Team Experience: For key team members, please provide resumes and include examples of experience conducting social science research and program evaluation. (5-page maximum).” Could the city clarify whether the 5-page limit includes both an explanation of staff and contractor experience conducting social science research and program evaluation along with staff resumes? Or whether this section should cover staff and organizational experience conducting social science research and program evaluation, and full resumes can be included separately as an Appendix? If full resumes are to be included in the Appendix, how long should each resume be?

The key staff team experience should be limited to five pages. Staff resumes may be hyper-linked in the proposal if needed. 

The submittal requirements do not provide a page limit for the section “Work Plan, Fee Proposal, and Schedule.” Could the City of Alameda clarify their page limit expectations for this section? 

We are looking for a thoughtful and thorough response, which adequately demonstrates an understanding of the project and any potential challenges.

The RFP outlines three tasks: A. Program Design and Participant Selection; B. Research Methodology; C. Reporting. Would the city of Alameda consider an alternative task structure that included an additional task that breaks out the data collection which aligns better with the phases of the research? For example, A. Program Design and Participant Selection; B. Research Methodology; C. Data Collection; and D. Reporting.

Yes, we are open to an alternative task structure if that allows you to better explain your proposed approach.

What is the period of performance completion date for this project taking into account the timeline for ARPA funds obligation and disbursement requirements? Based on the first two pages of Exhibit B-2 attached to the RFP (sections pasted below), what is the ultimate completion date for the contractor’s work? Is it December 31, 2024 or December 31, 2026? On the first page of Exhibit B-2 it says. “Pursuant to ARPA, Eligible Uses under this non-R&D federal program must be obligated no earlier than March 3, 2021 and no later than December 31, 2024, with final disbursement of all funds no later than December 31, 2026.” And then on the following page of the same exhibit it says:  “ARPA Funds. CITY agrees to provide the GRANTEE a total sum not to exceed the value of the Agreement to be Eligible Uses set forth in the Exhibit A (Scope of Work), conditioned on the requirement that such funds will be used or disbursed by GRANTEE to eligible subcontractors no later than December 31, 2024.”

The City anticipates the Pilot Program will launch in the spring or summer of 2023, which would mean the final participant payment would occur in the spring or summer of 2025. Per ARPA guidance, Program Partner invoices will need to be paid by December 31, 2026. However, the City anticipates that all invoices would be submitted by the fall of 2026 at the latest.

Will the contractor be required to get a City of Alameda business license?


In the RFP under Section X.13 Additional Terms and Conditions, will the City allow bidders or contractors to identify portions of its proposal to be exempted from public disclosure under the Public Records Act?

We are asking for clarification and will post a response shortly.